KBC Group NV increased its stake in Sandy Spring Bancorp Inc. (NASDAQ:SASR) by 234.0% in the fourth quarter, according to the company in its most recent Form 13F filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission. The fund owned 11,170 shares of the bank’s stock after buying an additional 7,826 shares during the quarter. KBC Group NV’s holdings in Sandy Spring Bancorp were worth $436,000 as of its most recent SEC filing.
Other institutional investors and hedge funds also recently modified their holdings of the company. FNY Partners Fund LP bought a new stake in Sandy Spring Bancorp in the fourth quarter worth $132,000. Court Place Advisors LLC bought a new stake in Sandy Spring Bancorp in the third quarter worth $200,000. Magnetar Financial LLC bought a new stake in Sandy Spring Bancorp in the third quarter worth $203,000. Columbia Partners L L C Investment Management bought a new stake in Sandy Spring Bancorp in the third quarter worth $228,000. Finally, SG Americas Securities LLC purchased a new stake in Sandy Spring Bancorp in the third quarter worth $261,000. Institutional investors own 71.04% of the company’s stock.
A number of research firms have weighed in on SASR. Gabelli began coverage on Sandy Spring Bancorp in a research note on Monday, January 8th. They issued a “buy” rating and a $50.00 target price on the stock. Zacks Investment Research upgraded Sandy Spring Bancorp from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Saturday, December 23rd. BidaskClub lowered Sandy Spring Bancorp from a “sell” rating to a “strong sell” rating in a research note on Thursday, January 25th. Stephens upgraded Sandy Spring Bancorp from an “equal weight” rating to an “overweight” rating and set a $45.00 target price on the stock in a research note on Thursday, February 22nd. Finally, Sandler O’Neill set a $44.00 target price on Sandy Spring Bancorp and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a research note on Friday, January 12th. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, four have given a hold rating and three have issued a buy rating to the stock. The company presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $44.80.
Sandy Spring Bancorp (NASDAQ:SASR) last released its earnings results on Thursday, January 18th. The bank reported $0.64 earnings per share for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.63 by $0.01. Sandy Spring Bancorp had a return on equity of 10.91% and a net margin of 21.63%. The business had revenue of $55.79 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $56.21 million. During the same quarter last year, the firm posted $0.55 earnings per share. The business’s revenue was up 8.7% compared to the same quarter last year. sell-side analysts expect that Sandy Spring Bancorp Inc. will post 3.05 EPS for the current year.
The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Wednesday, February 21st. Stockholders of record on Wednesday, February 14th were paid a dividend of $0.26 per share. The ex-dividend date was Tuesday, February 13th. This represents a $1.04 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 2.68%. Sandy Spring Bancorp’s dividend payout ratio is currently 42.80%.
In other news, Director Shaza L. Andersen sold 8,546 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Monday, January 22nd. The stock was sold at an average price of $39.64, for a total transaction of $338,763.44. Following the transaction, the director now owns 77,344 shares in the company, valued at $3,065,916.16. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is accessible through this link. Also, Director Joe Reeder sold 1,538 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Thursday, January 25th. The shares were sold at an average price of $38.63, for a total value of $59,412.94. Following the transaction, the director now owns 154,473 shares in the company, valued at approximately $5,967,291.99. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last 90 days, insiders have sold 22,556 shares of company stock worth $883,879. Insiders own 2.60% of the company’s stock.
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About Sandy Spring Bancorp
Sandy Spring Bancorp, Inc is the bank holding company for Sandy Spring Bank (the Bank). The Company operates through three segments: Community Banking, Insurance and Investment Management. The Company’s Community Banking segment operates through Sandy Spring Bank and involves delivering a range of financial products and services, including various loan and deposit products to both individuals and businesses.
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