Zacks Investment Research has upgraded
) to Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy).
Why the Upgrade?
Preferred Bank's first quarter 2013 results bring forth an
optimistic scenario of marked profitability and growth prospects
for the company. The reported net income of 30 cents per share
beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 22 cents. Further, expected
long-term earnings growth rate for Preferred Bank is 10.0%.
The results were primarily driven by a sequential improvement in
loan portfolio by 3.6% to $1.2 billion and an increase in total
deposits by 2.0% to $1.4 billion.
Amid tepid market conditions, Preferred Bank managed to maintain
a steady net interest margin, aided by strategic deployment of
available cash and a marginal reduction in funding costs. Net
interest margin for quarter was 4.03%, up 12 basis points from
the prior quarter.
Preferred Bank's healthy balance sheet and consistently improving
asset quality, along with the company's optimistic guidance for
the forthcoming quarters, drove the aforementioned rank change.
Notably, Preferred Bank has delivered positive earnings surprise
in the preceding 3 out of 4 quarters with an average beat of
26.3%. Moreover, during the last 60 days, the Zacks Consensus
Estimate for 2013 increased 6.8% to $1.10 per share. For 2014,
the Zacks Consensus Estimate advanced 3.3% to $1.24 per share
over the same time period.
Positive earning surprises along with favorable estimate
revisions made way for the rank upgrade.
Other Stocks to Consider
Apart from Preferred Bank, other banks worth considering include
Central Pacific Financial Corp.
Umpqua Holdings Corporation
) - all of which carry a Zacks Rank # 1(Strong Buy).
CENTRAL PAC FIN (CPF): Free Stock Analysis
PREFERRED BANK (PFBC): Free Stock Analysis
TRICO BANCSHRS (TCBK): Free Stock Analysis
UMPQUA HLDGS CP (UMPQ): Free Stock Analysis
To read this article on Zacks.com click here.