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BancorpSouth Announces 5.8 Million Share Buyback Program

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Banking holding company, BancorpSouth, Inc. (BXS - Free Report) , recently announced a new share buyback program for purchase of roughly 5.8 million shares or 6% of the company’s outstanding shares. Since Dec 11, the company’s share price has risen by 0.5%.

As disclosed, BancorpSouth’s board of directors has approved the buyback program, wherein shares can be repurchased from the open market under favourable conditions to maximize returns to the company’s shareholders.

Each share can be repurchased for $2.50, to be held in treasury for future use in stock option plans, compensation programs and other corporate purposes. The program is valid till Nov 30, 2016.

In Oct 2014, BancorpSouth announced a quarterly cash dividend of $0.075 per share to be paid on Jan 2, 2015 to shareholders of record as on Dec 15. This, along with the share repurchase authorization, reflects BancorpSouth’s commitment toward rewarding its shareholders handsomely.

In the nine months ended Sep 30, 2014, the company paid roughly $16.8 million as dividends and bought back shares worth $0.7 million. Net cash generated from operating activities amounted to $109.9 million.

The Zacks Consensus Estimate for BancorpSouth is currently pegged at $1.24 for 2014 and $1.43 for 2015, reflecting year-over-year growth of 25.4% and 15.1%, respectively.

With a market capitalization of $2.1 billion, BancorpSouth presently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). Some better-ranked stocks in the banking industry include Fidelity Southern Corporation (LION - Free Report) , Investar Holding Corporation (ISTR - Free Report) and Middleburg Financial Corporation . All these stocks sport a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy).

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