The following are the top rated Financial stocks according to 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.

ATLANTIC UNION BANKSHARES CORP (AUB) is a mid-cap value stock in the Regional Banks industry. The rating according to our strategy based on John Neff is 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: Atlantic Union Bankshares Corporation, formerly Union Bankshares Corporation, is a financial holding company and bank holding company. The Company operates through a community bank segment. The Company offers financial services through its community bank subsidiary, Union Bank & Trust (the Bank) and three non-bank financial services affiliates. The Company’s non-bank financial services affiliates include Union Insurance Group, LLC, which provides various lines of insurance products; Old Dominion Capital Management, Inc., Outfitter Advisors, Ltd., and Dixon, Hubard, Feinour & Brown, Inc., which provide investment advisory services. The community bank segment included one subsidiary bank, which provided loan, investment, and trust services to retail and commercial customers.

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

For a full detailed analysis using NASDAQ’s Guru Analysis tool, click here

CONNECTONE BANCORP INC (CNOB) is a small-cap value stock in the Regional Banks industry. The rating according to our strategy based on John Neff is 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: ConnectOne Bancorp, Inc. is a bank holding company of ConnectOne Bank (the Bank). The Bank is a community-based, full-service New Jersey-chartered commercial bank. The Bank offers a range of deposit and loan products. In addition, to attract the business of consumer and business customers, it also provides an array of other banking services. Products and services provided include personal and business checking accounts, retirement accounts, money market accounts, time and savings accounts, credit cards, wire transfers, access to automated teller services, Internet banking, Treasury Direct, automated clearing house (ACH) origination, lockbox services and mobile banking by phone. In addition, it offers safe deposit boxes. The Bank also offers remote deposit capture banking for both retail and business customers. It offers a range of deposit and loan products and services to the general public and, in particular, to small and mid-sized businesses, local professionals and individuals.

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

For a full detailed analysis using NASDAQ’s Guru Analysis tool, click here

GRUPO FINANCIERO GALICIA S.A. (ADR) (GGAL) is a small-cap value stock in the Regional Banks industry. The rating according to our strategy based on John Neff is 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: Grupo Financiero Galicia S.A. (Grupo Financiero Galicia) is a financial services holding company. The Company’s segments include Banking, Regional Credit Cards, CFA, Insurance and Other Grupo Galicia Businesses. Banco de Galicia y Buenos Aires S.A. (Banco Galicia) is a subsidiary of the Company. Its banking business segment represents Banco Galicia consolidated line by line with Banco Galicia Uruguay S.A. (Galicia Uruguay). It operates the regional credit cards segment through Tarjetas Regionales S.A. and its subsidiaries. Its CFA business segment extends unsecured personal loans to low and middle-income segments of the Argentine population. The Company operates the insurance segment through Sudamericana Holding S.A. and its subsidiaries. Its Other Grupo Galicia Businesses segment includes the results of Galicia Warrants S.A., Galicia Administradora de Fondos S.A. Sociedad Gerente de Fondos Comunes de Inversion and Net Investment S.A.

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

For a full detailed analysis using NASDAQ’s Guru Analysis tool, click here

HERITAGE FINANCIAL CORP (HFWA) is a small-cap value stock in the Regional Banks industry. The rating according to our strategy based on John Neff is 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: Heritage Financial Corporation is a bank holding company. The Company is engaged in the business of planning, directing and coordinating the business activities of its bank subsidiary, Heritage Bank (the Bank). The Bank’s lending activities focus on commercial business lending. The Bank also originates consumer loans, real estate construction and land development loans, and one- to four-family residential loans. The Bank’s investment securities available for sale include the United States treasury and the United States Government-sponsored agencies; municipal securities; mortgage-backed securities and collateralized mortgage obligations, which include residential and commercial; collateralized loan obligations; corporate obligations, and other securities. The Bank’s primary sources of funds are deposits and loan repayments. Borrowings are used on a short-term basis to compensate for reductions in other sources of funds, such as deposit inflows.

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

For a full detailed analysis using NASDAQ’s Guru Analysis tool, click here

INDEPENDENT BANK CORP (MASSACHUSETTS) (INDB) is a mid-cap value stock in the Regional Banks industry. The rating according to our strategy based on John Neff is 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: Independent Bank Corp. is a bank holding company. The Company operates through its subsidiary, Rockland Trust Company (the Bank). The Bank is a community-oriented commercial bank. Its community banking business provides a range of banking services, including lending activities, acceptance of demand, savings, and time deposits, and investment management. As of November 16, 2018, the bank operated approximately 100 retail branches, commercial and residential lending centers, and investment management offices in eastern Massachusetts, including Greater Boston, the South Shore, the Cape and Islands, and Rhode Island. The Bank classifies loans as commercial loans, consumer real estate loans, or other consumer loans. Commercial loans consist of commercial and industrial loans, commercial real estate loans, commercial construction loans, and small business loans. The Bank offers a range of demand deposits, interest checking, money market accounts and savings accounts.

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

For a full detailed analysis using NASDAQ’s Guru Analysis tool, click here

Since its inception, Validea’s strategy based on John Neff has returned 253.87% vs. 168.15% for the S&P 500. For more details on this strategy, click here

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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