On Dec 24, Zacks Investment Research upgraded
ViewPoint Financial Group, Inc.
) to a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy).
FIRST FIN BK-TX (FFIN): Free Stock Analysis
METROCORP BANCS (MCBI): Free Stock Analysis
PROSPERITY BCSH (PB): Free Stock Analysis
VIEWPOINT FINL (VPFG): Free Stock Analysis
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Why the Upgrade?
ViewPoint Financial continued with its acquisition strategy and
exhibited efforts to enhance shareholder value. Further, the
company has witnessed positive estimate revisions and it has a
long-term expected earnings growth rate of 12%.
On Nov 25, ViewPoint Financial inked a deal to merge with a
Texas-based private commercial bank- LegacyTexas Group, Inc for a
stock plus cash offer. Upon closure, ViewPoint Financial will be
known as LegacyTexas Financial Group, Inc. The deal is expected
to close by second-quarter 2014, subject to regulatory approvals,
customary closing conditions and approval by shareholders of
According to the terms of the deal, ViewPoint Financial will
issue 7.85 million shares of its common stock in addition to cash
of around $115 million for all the outstanding shares of
LegacyTexas. The deal is expected to be significantly accretive
to earnings per share. Further, this venture is expected to lead
to the formation of one of the largest independent banks in the
state of Texas, consisting of 51 branches and pro forma assets
worth over $5 billion.
Additionally, on Oct 22, ViewPoint Financial declared a 20% hike
in its quarterly cash dividend to 12 cents per share.
The Zacks Consensus Estimate for 2013 remained stable at 85 cents
per share over the last 60 days, while for 2014 it advanced 20.4%
to $1.12 per share.
Other Stocks to Consider
Other South-West Banks worth considering include
First Financial Bankshares Inc.
Metrocorp Bancshares Inc.
Prosperity Bancshares Inc.
). All these stocks carry a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).