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Comerica shares downgraded at DA Davidson amid rate cut concerns

Published 02/27/2024, 07:42 PM
Updated 02/27/2024, 07:42 PM
© Reuters.

On Tuesday, Comerica Incorporated (NYSE:CMA) received a downgrade from DA Davidson from Buy to Neutral. The firm also reduced the bank's price target to $56 from the previous $63. This adjustment reflects concerns over Comerica's balance sheet sensitivity to prolonged high interest rates, potentially hindering the bank's performance.

The analyst from DA Davidson pointed out that Comerica's net interest income (NII) guidance for 2024, provided in January, predicted an 11% decrease using the forward curve as of December 31. This forecast included an assumption of six rate cuts beginning in March.

However, recent remarks from Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell suggest a March rate cut is unlikely, with the first reduction now anticipated in June. This shift could exert further downward pressure on Comerica's net interest income than initially forecasted.

The reassessment of the rate cut timeline is a response to Powell's comments and the latest employment data, which has been relatively strong. These factors contribute to the expectation that the Federal Reserve may delay the start of interest rate reductions, which in turn affects banks like Comerica that have a liability-sensitive balance sheet.

Comerica's stock adjustment on the market reflects the updated financial outlook and the anticipation of how the bank will navigate a changing interest rate environment. The new price target of $56 set by DA Davidson represents a recalibration of Comerica's value in light of these economic factors.

Investors are now observing how Comerica will adjust its strategies to mitigate the impact of a potential delay in rate cuts on its net interest income. The downgrade serves as a signal to the market of the challenges that Comerica may face if the higher interest rate environment persists longer than previously expected.

InvestingPro Insights

Amidst the downgrade by DA Davidson, Comerica Incorporated (NYSE:CMA) presents a mix of challenges and resilience as reflected in the latest data and analysis from InvestingPro. With a market capitalization of $6.46 billion and a price-to-earnings (P/E) ratio of 7.58, the bank stands on a valuation that is modest relative to earnings. This P/E ratio has remained stable, with the last twelve months as of Q4 2023 showing a slight adjustment to 7.56.

Despite a challenging interest rate environment, Comerica has demonstrated a commitment to shareholder returns, maintaining dividend payments for an impressive 53 consecutive years. The current dividend yield is at 5.8%, which is particularly attractive to income-focused investors. Moreover, the dividend growth over the last twelve months stands at 4.41%, signaling a steady return for shareholders.

InvestingPro Tips highlight that while analysts have revised their earnings expectations downwards for the upcoming period, and Comerica suffers from weak gross profit margins, the company is still expected to be profitable this year. This profitability is supported by historical performance, with Comerica having been profitable over the last twelve months.

For investors seeking a deeper dive into Comerica's financial health and future prospects, InvestingPro offers additional insights. There are currently 5 more InvestingPro Tips available for Comerica, which can be accessed by visiting https://www.investing.com/pro/CMA. To enhance your investing strategy, use the coupon code PRONEWS24 to get an additional 10% off a yearly or biyearly Pro and Pro+ subscription.

This article was generated with the support of AI and reviewed by an editor. For more information see our T&C.

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