Stocks

Surging Earnings Estimates Signal Upside for Independent Bank (IBCP) Stock

Independent Bank (IBCP) appears an attractive pick given a noticeable improvement in the company's earnings outlook. The stock has been a strong performer lately, and the momentum might continue with analysts still raising their earnings estimates for the company.

The rising trend in estimate revisions, which is a result of growing analyst optimism on the earnings prospects of this bank holding company, should get reflected in its stock price. After all, empirical research shows a strong correlation between trends in earnings estimate revisions and near-term stock price movements. Our stock rating tool -- the Zacks Rank -- has this insight at its core.

The five-grade Zacks Rank system, which ranges from a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) to a Zacks Rank #5 (Strong Sell), has an impressive externally-audited track record of outperformance, with Zacks #1 Ranked stocks generating an average annual return of +25% since 2008.

For Independent Bank, there has been strong agreement among the covering analysts in raising earnings estimates, which has helped push consensus estimates considerably higher for the next quarter and full year.

The chart below shows the evolution of forward 12-month Zacks Consensus EPS estimate:

12 Month EPS

Current-Quarter Estimate Revisions

The earnings estimate of $0.62 per share for the current quarter represents a change of -30.34% from the number reported a year ago.

Over the last 30 days, two estimates have moved higher for Independent Bank compared to no negative revisions. As a result, the Zacks Consensus Estimate has increased 10.59%.

Current-Year Estimate Revisions

The company is expected to earn $2.76 per share for the full year, which represents a change of +9.09% from the prior-year number.

In terms of estimate revisions, the trend for the current year also appears quite encouraging for Independent Bank. Over the past month, two estimates have moved higher compared to no negative revisions, helping the consensus estimate increase 5.14%.

Favorable Zacks Rank

Thanks to promising estimate revisions, Independent Bank currently carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). The Zacks Rank is a tried-and-tested rating tool that helps investors effectively harness the power of earnings estimate revisions and make the right investment decision. You can see the complete list of today's Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

Our research shows that stocks with Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) and 2 (Buy) significantly outperform the S&P 500.

Bottom Line

While strong estimate revisions for Independent Bank have attracted decent investments and pushed the stock 9.8% higher over the past four weeks, further upside may still be left in the stock. So, you may consider adding it to your portfolio right away.


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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.

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Zacks is the leading investment research firm focusing on stock research, analysis and recommendations. In 1978, our founder discovered the power of earnings estimate revisions to enable profitable investment decisions. Today, that discovery is still the heart of the Zacks Rank. A wealth of resources for individual investors is available at www.zacks.com.

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