On Aug 14, Zacks Investment Research upgraded
) to a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy).
BANNER CORP (BANR): Free Stock Analysis
SIERRA BANCORP (BSRR): Free Stock Analysis
WASH FEDL INC (WAFD): Free Stock Analysis
WSFS FINL CORP (WSFS): Free Stock Analysis
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Why the Upgrade?
Sierra Bancorp has been witnessing rising earnings estimates on
the back of strong second-quarter 2013 results. Moreover, this
bank holding company has delivered an average earnings beat of
18.7% in the last 4 quarters. The expected earnings growth rate
for this stock for 2013 is 33.6%.
The company reported second-quarter results on Jul 22 with
earnings per share of 27 cents, beating the Zacks Consensus
Estimate by 92.9%. Further, it beat the prior-year quarter
earnings of 18 cents by 50.0%. Robust results for the reported
quarter were primarily aided by a substantial reduction in
provision for loan losses. This was partly offset by lower
non-interest as well as net interest income.
Credit quality continues to exhibit an improvement for Sierra
Bancorp. The provision for loan losses was $0.8 million compared
with $1.1 million in the prior-year quarter. Net charge-offs fell
78.1% to $1.5 million in the quarter.
However, on the downside, net interest income fell 2.2% year over
year to $12.3 million. Net interest margin was 4.04%, down 21
basis points from the year-ago quarter. Non-interest income
declined 2.4% year over year to $4.0 million. Non-interest
expense rose 2.2% from the year-ago period to $10.7 million.
Following second-quarter 2013 results, the Zacks Consensus
Estimate for 2013 increased 23.8% to 78 cents per share on the
back of upward revisions in both estimates over the last 30 days.
For 2014, the Zacks Consensus Estimate advanced 13.7% to 83 cents
per share, with both the estimates moving north over the same
Other Stocks to Consider
Apart from Sierra Bancorp, other stocks with a Zacks Rank #1
Washington Federal Inc.
WSFS Financial Corp.