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4 Reasons that Make Independent Bank an Attractive Pick Now

The rising rate environment and the approval of the Financial Choice Act have renewed optimism regarding performance of the banks. Hence, this is the right time to bet on banking stocks. Among others, Independent Bank CorporationIBCP might see a decent upside based on its underlying strength.

Independent Bank's shares have returned 43.5% over the last one year, outperforming the Zacks categorized Banks - Midwest industry's rally of 35.6%.

Furthermore, the bank's Zacks Consensus Estimate has been revised nearly 1% upward for both 2017 and 2018, in the last 60 days. As a result, the company carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).

Why the Stock is Worth Buying

Earnings Per Share (EPS) Growth: Independent Bank witnessed EPS growth of 14.4% in the last three to five years compared with 11.3% for the broader industry.

Also, the company's estimated EPS growth rate of 13.3% for 2017 compares favorably with 10.1% for the industry.

Superior Return on Equity (ROE): The bank's ROE of 9.83% compares with the industry average of 9.57%. This reflects that the company reinvests its cash more efficiently.

Revenue Growth: Independent Bank continues to make steady progress toward improving its top line, with sales recording a three-year (2014-2016) compounded annual growth rate of 4.1%.

Further, bank's projected sales growth (F1/F0) of 6.9% compares favorably with the industry average of 2.7%.

Strong Leverage: Independent Bank's debt/equity ratio is 0.18 compared with the industry average of 0.41. The relatively strong financial health of the company will help it perform better than its peers under a dynamic business environment.

Other Stocks to Consider

Some other stocks worth considering in the same space include Associated Banc-Corp ASB , Enterprise Financial Services Corp EFSC and First Financial Bancorp FFBC . All these stocks hold a Zacks Rank #2. You can see the complete list of today's Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here .

Associated Banc-Corp has witnessed an upward earnings estimate revision of 1.4% for the current year in the past 60 days. Also, its shares have rallied 48.1% over the last one year.

Enterprise Financial's earnings estimates have been revised upward by 1.9% for the current year, in the past 60 days. Also, over the last one year, its shares have gained 52.8%.

First Financial has witnessed an upward earnings estimate revision of 1.3% for the current year, in the past 60 days. Also, its shares have jumped 44.1%, over the last one year.

The Best & Worst of Zacks

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First Financial Bancorp. (FFBC): Free Stock Analysis Report

Associated Banc-Corp (ASB): Free Stock Analysis Report

Enterprise Financial Services Corporation (EFSC): Free Stock Analysis Report

Independent Bank Corporation (IBCP): Free Stock Analysis Report

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.


The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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