6. Northfield Bancorp
Shares of Northfield Bancorp (NFBK) of Avenel, N.J., closed at $13.97 Monday, rising 7% year-to-date. The shares were 16% higher than the consensus price target of $12.00 at the end of 2010.
The company had $2.3 billion in total assets as of Sept. 30, with 24 branches in New Jersey and New York.Northfield Bancorp is a mutual holding company, with Northfield Bancorp MHC holding 57% of the company's common stock as of Dec. 31, 2010. The mutual holding company waives its dividend from North Field Bancorp, which in turn pays six cents per quarter to common shareholders, for a dividend yield of 1.72%. In June 2010, the mutual holding company and Northfield Bancorp adopted a plan for a second-step conversion to full stock ownership, however, the conversion and proposed common equity offering were put on hold in September 2010 because of market conditions. According to SNL Financial, there are three second-step conversions scheduled to close this month, including Wellesley Bancorp (WEBK) of Wellesley, Mass., on Dec. 12; West End Indiana Bancshares of Richmond, Ind., on Dec. 13; and Cheviot Financial (CHEV) of Cheviot, Ohio, on Dec. 20. Northfield Bancorp reported third-quarter net income of $3.7 million, or nine cents a share, increasing from $2.4 million, or six cents a share, in the third quarter of 2010. The provision for loan losses declined to $2 million in the third quarter, from $3.4 million a year earlier. Third-quarter net interest income increased 4% year-over-year, to $16.3 million, as "strong loan growth and improving loan quality