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Shares of Synovus Financial Corporation crafted a new 52-week high, touching $3.51 at the beginning of the trading session on Aug 5. The closing price of this financial services provider represents a solid year-to-date return of 33.3%. The trading volume for the session was 9.2 million shares.

Despite hitting its 52-week high, this Zacks Rank #2 (Buy) stock has plenty of upside left, given its strong estimate revisions over the last 30 days and expected long-term earnings growth of 6.5%.

Growth Drivers

Impressive second-quarter 2013 results – including significant improvement in the credit quality and a strong capital position – as well as announcement of the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP) dues repayment were the primary growth drivers for Synovus.

On Jul 18, Synovus reported its second-quarter 2013 net income of 3 cents per share, in line with the Zacks Consensus Estimate. However, results outpaced the prior-quarter earnings by a penny. Decline in non-interest expenses and a marked improvement in credit quality were the tailwinds for the quarter. Moreover, the company’s capital ratios depict its strong position. Further, higher top line and rise in deposits and loans added fuel to the fire.

Concurrent with the earnings release, Synovus announced its plan of redeeming 967,870 shares of its Fixed Rate Cumulative Perpetual Preferred Stock, Series A, issued to the U.S. Treasury through the Capital Purchase Program initiated under TARP, for a total purchase price of $967.87 million. This depicts Synovus’ sustainable profitability and strong position.

Estimate Revisions Show Potency

Over the last 30 days, 12 out of 14 estimates for 2013 have been revised upward for Synovus, lifting the Zacks Consensus Estimate by 27.3% to 14 cents per share. For 2014, 11 of the 13 estimates moved north, helping the Zacks Consensus Estimate advance 17.6% to 20 cents per share.

Some better performing Southwest banks include Farmers Capital Bank Corporation , Home Bancshares, Inc. (Conway, AR) and Monarch Financial Holdings, Inc. . All 3 companies carry a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy).

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