A rising-rate environment and favorable macroeconomic factors are backing the Finance sector’s steady growth. Higher rates typically help finance companies (except REITs) in generating better revenues. Moreover, stepped up activities in the sector based on the economic improvement are helping the companies perform better.
After facing a difficult operating environment and intense regulatory scrutiny for years, finance stocks are gradually regaining their past glory and have become investor favorites.
Now, many investors think that betting on an undervalued stock from a well-performing industry might lead to value traps. However, there are a few stocks in the Finance sector that have been overlooked but have high upside potential as they have been witnessing upward earnings estimate revisions.
Selecting Stocks With Enhanced Value Prospects
With help of the Zacks Screener, we selected finance stocks that have the best upside potential and are still undervalued. To shortlist the stocks from the vast universe, we have picked those that carry a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) or #2 (Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.
To further narrow down the list, we selected those with a Value Score of A or B. Our research shows that stocks with a Style Score of A or B when combined with a Zacks Rank #1 or 2 offer the best upside potential.
Here are the three stocks that fulfilled these criteria:
Moelis & Company (MC - Free Report) has a Zacks Rank of 2 and a Value Score of B. In the past year, the company’s shares have surged 55.1%. It is expected to record 23.5% earnings growth for the current year against the industry average of 18.2%. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for current-year earnings has witnessed an upward revision of 5.7% over the last 60 days for Moelis & Company. The shares are currently undervalued with respect to its price-to-earnings ratio, as the 12-month trailing P/E ratio of 17.45 is below the industry average of 17.60.
Shares of AeroCentury Corp. (ACY - Free Report) have gained 28% in a year. This leasing company has a Zacks Rank of 2. The stock currently looks undervalued with respect to its price-to-earnings ratio, as the 12-month trailing P/E ratio of 7.09 is below the industry average of 7.92, thus helping it gain a Value Score of A. Further, its Zacks Consensus Estimate for current-year earnings has been revised 9.9% upward over the last 60 days. It is also expected to record 13.5% earnings growth in 2017, on par with the industry average.
With a Zacks Rank #2 and Value Score of B, AGNC Investment Corp. (AGNC - Free Report) witnessed an 11.4% rally in its share price in a year. Also, the company is expected to record 8.33% earnings growth for 2017 against the industry’s decline of 3.1%. The stock currently looks undervalued with respect to its price-to-earnings ratio, as the 12-month trailing P/E ratio of 8.35 is below the industry average of 10.01. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for current-year earnings has witnessed an upward revision of 6.2% over the last 60 days for shares of AGNC.
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