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Are Investors Undervaluing Ameris Bancorp (ABCB) Right Now?

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Here at Zacks, our focus is on the proven Zacks Rank system, which emphasizes earnings estimates and estimate revisions to find great stocks. Nevertheless, we are always paying attention to the latest value, growth, and momentum trends to underscore strong picks.

Of these, value investing is easily one of the most popular ways to find great stocks in any market environment. Value investors use tried-and-true metrics and fundamental analysis to find companies that they believe are undervalued at their current share price levels.

Luckily, Zacks has developed its own Style Scores system in an effort to find stocks with specific traits. Value investors will be interested in the system's "Value" category. Stocks with both "A" grades in the Value category and high Zacks Ranks are among the strongest value stocks on the market right now.

One stock to keep an eye on is Ameris Bancorp (ABCB - Free Report) . ABCB is currently holding a Zacks Rank of #2 (Buy) and a Value grade of A. The stock is trading with P/E ratio of 9.01 right now. For comparison, its industry sports an average P/E of 11.23. Over the past year, ABCB's Forward P/E has been as high as 11.65 and as low as 4.73, with a median of 9.35.

Another valuation metric that we should highlight is ABCB's P/B ratio of 0.66. The P/B ratio is used to compare a stock's market value with its book value, which is defined as total assets minus total liabilities. ABCB's current P/B looks attractive when compared to its industry's average P/B of 0.91. Within the past 52 weeks, ABCB's P/B has been as high as 1.28 and as low as 0.53, with a median of 1.13.

Value investors also love the P/S ratio, which is calculated by simply dividing a stock's price with the company's sales. Some people prefer this metric because sales are harder to manipulate on an income statement. This means it could be a truer performance indicator. ABCB has a P/S ratio of 1.51. This compares to its industry's average P/S of 1.76.

Finally, our model also underscores that ABCB has a P/CF ratio of 9.83. This metric focuses on a firm's operating cash flow and is often used to find stocks that are undervalued based on the strength of their cash outlook. This stock's P/CF looks attractive against its industry's average P/CF of 11. ABCB's P/CF has been as high as 18.60 and as low as 7.12, with a median of 10.55, all within the past year.

Value investors will likely look at more than just these metrics, but the above data helps show that Ameris Bancorp is likely undervalued currently. And when considering the strength of its earnings outlook, ABCB sticks out at as one of the market's strongest value stocks.


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