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FBR Starts National Commerce At Market Perform

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FBR Starts National Commerce At Market Perform

FBR & Co. started National Commerce Corp (NASDAQ: NCOM) with a Market Perform rating and price target of $27 per share, saying that although the bank's asset quality has been good, equity returns have trailed peer averages.

FBR says National Commerce shares will rise after it grows tangible book value per share to $16.97 by the first quarter 2017 and generates a 10 percent return on average tangible common equity (ROATCE) in 2016.

"Going forward, we believe NCOM shares are fairly valued given the absence of a visible upside earnings catalyst and our outlook for modest ROATCE improvement in 2016," analyst Christopher Nolan wrote in a note.

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The analyst said, according to data from SNL, National Commerce's core return on tangible common equity (ROATCE) in 2015 was 7.79 percent versus a 10.46 percent average for peers due to under-loaned balance sheet and relatively higher operating costs.

For the first quarter, loans were 93 percent of deposits, but "we do not think they will materially rise from these levels as management seeks to maintain balance sheet flexibility," Nolan noted.

For 2016, Nolan sees operating EPS of $1.51 (versus $1.02 in 2015), and slightly above the Street consensus of $1.47. The analyst also projects improving operating efficiencies in 2016, as he expects efficiency ratio to decline in 2016 to 60 percent from 69 percent in 2015.

The analyst noted that the company is more likely to be an acquirer in the next 12 months given its acquisition history over the past two years and its share price valuation multiple premium relative to peers.

Nolan continued that NCOM shares trades at 1.5x 1Q16 tangible book value of $15.42 and at 15.6x his 2016 EPS estimate. In comparison, the analyst estimates that peers trade at 1.4x tangible book and at 13.6x 2016 estimates.

At time of writing, National Commerce was up 3.22 percent at $23.53 with approximately 10 minutes before Wednesday's closing bell.

Latest Ratings for NCOM

DateFirmActionFromTo
Nov 2018DowngradesOutperformMarket Perform
Nov 2018UpgradesMarket PerformOutperform
Oct 2018UpgradesMarket PerformOutperform

View More Analyst Ratings for NCOM
View the Latest Analyst Ratings

Posted-In: Christopher Nolan FBR FBR & Co.Analyst Color Price Target Initiation Analyst Ratings

 

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