Tags: Bove | bank | stocks | cheap

Bove: Bank Stocks 'Unbelievably Cheap From Fundamental Standpoint'

By    |   Thursday, 12 March 2015 07:40 AM

While bank stocks may have underperformed the overall stock market over the past year, they represent an attractive investment now, says ace bank analyst Dick Bove of Rafferty Capital Markets.
 
"If you look at bank stocks within the past 12 months, what you can see is that the KBE, the ETF that relates to banking stocks, is down about 4 percent in a period in which the stock market, as measured by the S&P 500 is up 9.50 percent," he tells CNBC.
 
But the lagging performance of bank stocks doesn't reflect any fundamental problems with the banks' business, Bove argues. Book values, dividends and earnings are rising, except for those banks with litigation expenses
 
And, "if you look at 2015, all three of these things are going to be up again," he notes. "The question is when will investors get comfortable enough with the banking industry to start buying stocks again, because from a fundamental standpoint these stocks are unbelievably cheap."
 
Meanwhile, the 2010 Dodd-Frank financial reform law has helped accelerate the shrinkage of small banks, according to a study by Harvard researchers Marshall Lux and Robert Greene.
 
Community banks' share of U.S. banking assets and lending markets has dropped to 20 percent from more than 40 percent in 1994.
 
"Interestingly, we find that community banks emerged from the financial crisis with a market share 6 percent lower," Lux and Greene write.
 
"But since the second quarter of 2010 — around the time of the passage of the Dodd-Frank Act — their share . . . has declined at a rate almost double that between the second quarters of 2006 and 2010."
 
The implications could be harmful.
 
"Dodd-Frank's regulatory burdens are driving consolidation and could result in lending markets less able to serve core economic demands," Lux said, according to Forbes contributor Carrie Sheffield.
 
"Particularly troubling is community banks' declining market share in several key lending markets, their decline in small business lending volume and the disproportionate losses being realized by particularly small community banks," the duo writes.

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While bank stocks may have underperformed the overall stock market over the past year, they represent an attractive investment now, says ace bank analyst Dick Bove of Rafferty Capital Markets.
Bove, bank, stocks, cheap
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2015-40-12
Thursday, 12 March 2015 07:40 AM
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