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BB&T Corp.(BBT - Get Report) of Winston-Salem, N.C., closed at $29.65 Wednesday, returning 19% year-to-date. Based on a quarterly payout of 16 cents, the shares have a dividend yield of 2.16%.
The company on Friday agreed to purchase the life and P&C insurance operating divisions of Roseland, N.J.-based Crump Group from J.C. Flowers for $570 million in cash, saying the deal would "add approximately $300 million in annual revenue."
BB&T also has a deal in place to purchase
BankAtlantic Bancorp's (BBX) main thrift subsidiary for a premium of $301 million to pick up 3.3 billion in deposits, spread across 78 South Florida branches.
O'Connor's price target for BB&T is $30.00.
Among the positives he sees for BB&T, O'Connor growing its commercial and industrial loans, along with "niche areas within its specialized lending segment," while also "growing small ticket consumer, prime auto, and commercial leasing which are smaller in size, but provide more granularity/geographic diversification to its portfolio." Even without the Crump insurance business, BB&T derived "$1b or 31% of core noninterest income in 2011" from its insurance business.
O'Connor also expects BB&T's credit expenses to continue to decline, estimating 2012 earnings of $2.49 a share in 2012, followed by EPS of $2.78 in 2013.
On the negative side, risks for BB&T investors include continued pressure on the company's net interest margin, as the company "continues to run off higher-yielding Colonial assets," acquired when BB&T bought the failed Colonial Bank of Montgomery, Ala., from the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. in September 2009.
O'Connor also thinks there "may be little upside" to BB&T's dividend this year, because of the company's preference to deploy capital through "organic growth."
Interested in more on BB&T? See TheStreet Ratings' report card for this stock.