NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Shares of Fifth Third Bancorp (FITB) - Get Report are rising by 0.43% to $18.68 on Friday afternoon, as Jefferies increased its price target to $21 from $19.50 and reiterated its "buy" rating this morning.

"With recent stability in EPS (earnings per share) estimates and substantial unrealized value in its VNTV stake, we believe FITB is heading in a better direction," the firm said in an investor note, explaining why it raised the price target.

Jefferies analysts raised 2016 full-year earnings estimates to $1.57 per share, from $1.54 per share and next year's full-year estimates to $1.71 per share from $1.68 per share.

The Cincinnati-based financial holding company also has an 18.3% interest in Vantiv (VNTV), which is also a holding company headquartered in Cincinnati, focused in acquiring debt through payment processing.

"Our analysis shows that future sales of VNTV shares and related benefits could add a total of 7% to EPS and 11% to TBV (tangible book value)," Jefferies stated.

Separately, TheStreet Ratings rated Fifth Third Bancorp as a "buy" with a score of B.

TheStreet Ratings objectively rated this stock according to its "risk-adjusted" total return prospect over a 12-month investment horizon.

Not based on the news in any given day, the rating may differ from Jim Cramer's view or that of this articles's author. TheStreet Ratings has this to say about the recommendation:

This is driven by several positive factors, which TheStreet Ratings believes should have a greater impact than any weaknesses, and should give investors a better performance opportunity than most stocks that are covered.

The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, notable return on equity and expanding profit margins.

TheStreet Ratings feels its strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had lackluster performance in the stock itself.

You can view the full analysis from the report here: FITB

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