Heading into the new year, Bank of America's long-suffering shareholders are looking for a significant capital return, following the next round of
stress tests, with many analysts expecting the company to restore a meaningful dividend, as well as being approved to buy back common shares. Atlantic Equities analyst Richard Staite pointed out on Dec. 13 pointed out that the company had met its fully phased-in Basel III Tier 1 common equity ratio requirement of 9.0% as of Sept. 30, many years in advance, and estimated the company would be approved to pay out $2 billion in dividends on common shares in 2013, while buying back $4 billion worth of shares.
State rates Bank of America "Overweight" with a $12 price target, and is out in front of the consensus, estimating the company will earn $1.23 a share in 2013, with EPS increasing to $1.53 in 2014.
Oppenheimer analyst Chris Kotowski has a different view, rating Bank of America "Market Perform," while trailing the consensus with a 2013 EPS estimate of 79 cents.
Kotowski on Thursday said in a report that "our lower revenue assumptions are offset by lower expenses because we assume that the improvement in the housing market, and primarily the drop in foreclosures, will be a tailwind for BAC's expense initiatives, especially in the back half of 2013. Overall, our 2013 estimates are about 18% below consensus, but we believe this is largely cosmetic as our pre-provision earnings estimates are in line but our reserve release assumptions are lower."
Interested in more on Bank of America? See TheStreet Ratings' report card for this stock.
Written by Philip van Doorn in Jupiter, Fla.