U.S. banking stocks have been on a rollercoaster ride recently, alternating between positive and negative months from February to May.
The 324 U.S. banks and thrifts in this S&P Global Market Intelligence analysis posted a median total return of negative 6.1% in May after posting a positive median return in April. The market-cap weighted SNL U.S. Bank and Thrift index fared even worse, posting a negative 9.5% total return in May.
Three of the U.S. banks and thrifts that cleared the $10 billion total asset hurdle in the first quarter — McKinney, Texas-based Independent Bank Group Inc.; Wilmington, Del.-based WSFS Financial Corp.; and San Diego-based Axos Financial Inc. — continued to trade at premiums to the industry in May, although those gaps have narrowed during the last year.
WSFS Financial commanded the highest valuation in terms of price-to-adjusted tangible book value among the trio a year ago at 309.6%, more than 100 percentage points above the industry median. As of May 31, WSFS Financial's P/ATBV was down to 176.3%, trailing Independent Bank and Axos Financial but still 26 percentage points higher than the industry median.
Nine companies in the analysis traded below adjusted tangible book value at the end of May. Fishers, Ind.-based First Internet Bancorp remained the lowest-priced institution, with a P/ATBV of 68.3%.
Six companies entered the bottom 25 valuation list in May: Malvern, Pa.-based Meridian Corp., which crossed over $1 billion in total assets in the first quarter; Costa Mesa, Calif.-based Pacific Mercantile Bancorp; Irvine, Calif.-based Opus Bank; Terre Haute, Ind.-based First Financial Corp.; McLean, Va.-based Capital One Financial Corp.; Honolulu-based Territorial Bancorp Inc.; and Uniondale, N.Y.-based Flushing Financial Corp.
Exiting the list were Willimantic, Conn.-based SI Financial Group Inc., which was acquired by Boston-based Berkshire Hills Bancorp Inc. on May 17; Hartford, Conn.-based United Financial Bancorp Inc.; Hampton, Va.-based Old Point Financial Corp.; Defiance, Ohio-based SB Financial Group Inc.; Louisville, Ky.-based Limestone Bancorp Inc.; Shippensburg, Pa.-based Orrstown Financial Services Inc.; and Hamilton, N.J.-based First Bank.
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