UBS analyst Erika Najarian initiates coverage of large cap regional banks

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UBS on Thursday launched coverage of seven banks, including five with buy ratings and two with hold ratings, as the group is poised to benefit from higher interest rates. Analyst Erika Najarian said she expects 21% upside in these names, despite strong stock performances thus far in 2022. UBS assigned a buy rating and a $32 price target to KeyCorp KEY, +1.72% ; a buy rating and $212 price target for M&T Bank Corp. MTB, +2.34% ; a buy rating and $56 price for Fifth Third Bancorp. FITB, +1.89% ; a buy rating and $32 price target for Regions Financial Corp. RF, +2.03% ; and neutral ratings on Citizens Financial Group CFG, +1.36% and First Republic Bank FRC, -1.78%, with price targets of $58 a share and $210 a share, respectively. Najarian also assumed coverage of Huntington Bancshares Inc. [hban], which was previously covered by UBS. She upgraded Huntington Bancshares to buy from neutral and raised its price target to $21 from $15. “This group has even greater exposure to net interest income (NII) as a percentage of revenues vs. the big banks (66% vs 52% respectively), and is therefore especially sensitive to positive revisions in the rate outlook,” Najarian said in a research note. KBW Nasdaq Bank Index is up 12% so far in 2022, including a rise of 0.7% on Thursday.

Source: Marketwatch

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