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Baird downgrades Wells Fargo due to cautious industry outlook

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Baird downgrades Wells Fargo due to cautious industry outlook

Downgrade

Baird analyst David George downgraded San Francisco-based Wells Fargo & Co. due to a more cautious industry view in 2020.

While the analyst likes Wells Fargo's new CEO Charles Scharf, new leadership could initially lower expectations and lead to an extended timetable for improving operating leverage, he wrote.

The analyst downgraded the company's stock rating to "underperform" from "neutral." He raised his 2019 EPS estimate to $4.52 from $4.49 and his 2020 EPS estimate to $4.31 from $4.15.

Upgrades

Stephens analyst Tyler Stafford upgraded Portland, Ore.-based Umpqua Holdings Corp.

Umpqua's operations initiative will drive upside to consensus estimates and position the company to see return on assets/return on tangible common equity expansion through 2020, Stafford wrote.

The analyst upgraded the company's stock rating to "overweight" from "equal-weight" and raised the price target to $21 from $16. He maintained his 2019 EPS estimate of $1.58, but raised his 2020 EPS estimate to $1.51 from $1.38. He established a 2021 EPS estimate of $1.71.

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Stephens analyst Gordon McGuire upgraded Greenwood Village, Colo.-based National Bank Holdings Corp.

The analyst wrote that he expects greater urgency around normalizing expenses in 2020, which should drive positive EPS growth. With the company's recent expansion into Utah, the analyst expects high-single-digit loan growth.

The analyst upgraded the company's stock rating to "overweight" from "equal-weight" and raised the price target to $42 from $38. The analyst lowered his 2019 EPS estimate by 1 cent to $2.48 and his 2020 EPS estimate to $2.25 from $2.27.