Financial behemoth Wells Fargo shares got a rating boost to buy from hold, from Jefferies analyst Ken Usdin. He also raised his share price target to $38 a share from $26.
Calling Wells a " still-discounted turnaround story”, Usdin said that it is approaching a positive rate-of-change in many parts of the franchise. According to the analyst, Wells will be one of the few banks to show decreasing expenses for the next few years, regardless of the size and timing of a formalized cost plan.
The analyst expects the bank’s net interest income to stabilize at around fourth quarter 2020 levels, in part due to lower premium amortization and absence of hedge losses; but he still thinks that it will decline -5% to -6% in 2021.
Usdin said that while revenue has been challenge for Wells Fargo, comps should get better for many line items in 2021.
According to Usdin’s analysis, Wells Fargo’s stock valuation remains lowest in the group on both P/E and P/TBV (price to tangible book value), considering the recent and ongoing uncertainties. "We believe that WFC could close the gap somewhat as fundamental performance improves."
The analyst mentioned risks to his outlook, such as asset cap removal past 2021 which would add uncertainty about WFC's ability to grow its balance sheet.