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Validea John Neff Strategy Daily Upgrade Report - 7/21/2020

The following are today's upgrades for Validea's Low PE Investor model based on the published strategy of John Neff. This strategy looks for firms with persistent earnings growth that trade at a discount relative to their earnings growth and dividend yield.

FIRST FOUNDATION INC (FFWM) is a small-cap value stock in the Regional Banks industry. The rating according to our strategy based on John Neff changed from 62% to 81% based on the firm’s underlying fundamentals and the stock’s valuation. A score of 80% or above typically indicates that the strategy has some interest in the stock and a score above 90% typically indicates strong interest.

Company Description: First Foundation Inc. is a financial services holding company that provides a platform of personalized financial services to high net-worth individuals and their families, family businesses and other affiliated organizations. The Company conducts its operations through its subsidiaries, First Foundation Advisors (FFA) and First Foundation Bank (FFB), and First Foundation Insurance Services (FFIS), a subsidiary of FFB. The Company's segments include Banking, Investment Management and Wealth Planning (Wealth Management), and Other. The Banking segment includes the operations of FFB and FFIS, and Wealth Management segment includes the operations of FFA. The Company's integrated platform provides investment management, wealth planning, consulting, trust, banking products and services, life insurance services and property and casualty insurance services to meet the financial needs of its clients.

The following table summarizes whether the stock meets each of this strategy's tests. Not all criteria in the below table receive equal weighting or are independent, but the table provides a brief overview of the strong and weak points of the security in the context of the strategy's criteria.

P/E RATIO:PASS
EPS GROWTH:FAIL
FUTURE EPS GROWTH:PASS
SALES GROWTH:PASS
TOTAL RETURN/PE:PASS
FREE CASH FLOW:PASS
EPS PERSISTENCE:PASS

Detailed Analysis of FIRST FOUNDATION INC

Full Guru Analysis for FFWM

Full Factor Report for FFWM

More details on Validea's John Neff strategy

About John Neff: While known as the manager with whom many top managers entrusted their own money, Neff was far from the smooth-talking, high-profile Wall Streeter you might expect. He was mild-mannered and low-key, and the same might be said of the Windsor Fund that he managed for more than three decades. In fact, Neff himself described the fund as "relatively prosaic, dull, [and] conservative." There was nothing dull about his results, however. From 1964 to 1995, Neff guided Windsor to a 13.7 percent average annual return, easily outpacing the S&P 500's 10.6 percent return during that time. That 3.1 percentage point difference is huge over time -- a $10,000 investment in Windsor (with dividends reinvested) at the start of Neff's tenure would have ended up as more than $564,000 by the time he retired, more than twice what the same investment in the S&P would have yielded (about $233,000). Considering the length of his tenure, that track record may be the best ever for a manager of such a large fund.

About Validea: Validea is an investment research service that follows the published strategies of investment legends. Validea offers both stock analysis and model portfolios based on gurus who have outperformed the market over the long-term, including Warren Buffett, Benjamin Graham, Peter Lynch and Martin Zweig. For more information about Validea, click here

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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