Metro Bancorp Hits New 52-Week High - Analyst Blog

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Shares of Metro Bancorp, Inc. ( METR ) hit a new 52-week high, touching $20.54 in the first half of the trading session on Jun 17. However, the stock closed the session at $19.98, which reflects a solid year-to-date return of 49.3%. The trading volume for the session was 24,752 shares.

Despite the strong price appreciation, this Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) northeast bank has plenty of upside left, given its strong estimate revisions over the last 60 days and expected year-over-year earnings growth of 13.6% for 2013.

Growth Drivers

Metro's impressive price performance reflects solid first-quarter 2013 results which include positive earnings surprise of 52.9%. Additionally, the company maintains a robust capital position in compliance with the regulatory guidelines.

On Apr 22, Metro declared its first-quarter earnings of 26 cents per share, substantially beating the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 17 cents. Moreover, net income of $3.6 million marked a 36.8% year over year increase.

Growth in loans and deposits remains key driving force at Metro. Loan portfolio grew 7% year over year $1.5 billion and total deposits surged 5% year over year to $2.2 billion in the first quarter.

Moreover, Metro has delivered positive earnings surprises in the trailing 4 quarters with an average beat of 26.1%.

Estimate Revisions Show Potency

In the last 60 days, the Zacks Consensus Estimate for 2013 increased 15.8% to 88 cents per share. For 2014, the Zacks Consensus Estimate advanced 5.7% to 92 cents per share over the same time frame.

Apart from Metro, other banks which are worth considering include Sandy Spring Bancorp Inc. ( SASR ) - with a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), as well as Mb Financial Inc. ( MBFI ) and Oritani Financial Corp New ( ORIT ) - with a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).

MB FINANCL INC (MBFI): Free Stock Analysis Report

METRO BANCORP (METR): Free Stock Analysis Report

ORITANI FINL CP (ORIT): Free Stock Analysis Report

SANDY SPRING (SASR): 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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