Why this top broker downgraded Westpac (ASX:WBC) shares

Westpac’s shares have been downgraded by a leading broker…
The post Why this top broker downgraded Westpac (ASX:WBC) shares appeared first on The Motley Fool Australia. –

The Westpac Banking Corp (ASX: WBC) share price was well and truly out of form on Monday.

The banking giant’s shares sank 7.5% to $23.78 following the release of its full year results.

Is the weakness in the Westpac share price a buying opportunity?

The team at Goldman Sachs aren’t convinced the Westpac share price weakness is a buying opportunity.

So much so, this morning the broker downgraded the bank’s shares to a neutral rating and cut the price target on them by 11.5% to $25.60.

While this still offers decent upside of 7.5% for investors, the broker sees better value on offer elsewhere.

What did the broker say?

According to the note, Goldman was very disappointed with Westpac’s weak net interest margin (NIM) outlook and its expenses. It feels the latter makes it hard for the bank to achieve its $8 billion cost target by FY 2024.

This led to Goldman downgrading its earnings estimates meaningfully for the coming years.

It explained: “We revise our FY22/23/24E EPS by -6.0%/-9.1%/-9.5% driven by: i) a weaker NIM trajectory, ii) lower other operating income from asset sales and weaker markets, partly offset by iii) better performance on BDDs.”

“We downgrade WBC from a Buy to a Neutral highlighting the following key drivers: i) the significant reset in the margin at the 2H21 result provides a weak platform for revenue growth in FY22E; ii) with expenses disappointing in 2H21, we believe the potential for WBC to reach its FY24 cost target of A$8.0 bn should be more heavily discounted than previously was the case and we note that our like-for-like FY24E cost forecast is c. A$8.6 bn; iii) the benefits to non-interest income from increased economic activity are set to be offset by a loss of income from divestments, and iv) our revised TP offers only 7.5% upside,” the broker concluded.

The post Why this top broker downgraded Westpac (ASX:WBC) shares appeared first on The Motley Fool Australia.

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More reading

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Here’s everything to know about the Westpac (ASX:WBC) dividend after its earnings update

ASX 200 (ASX:XJO) midday update: Westpac sinks, Macquarie raises $1.5bn

Can the Macquarie (ASX:MQG) share price break new highs over $200?

Motley Fool contributor James Mickleboro owns shares of Westpac Banking Corporation. The Motley Fool Australia’s parent company Motley Fool Holdings Inc. has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Bruce Jackson.

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