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10 Cheapest Bank Stocks to Forward Earnings (Update 3)

8. First Defiance Financial

FDEF Chart FDEF data by YCharts

Shares of First Defiance Financial (FDEF) of Defiance, Ohio, closed at $21.89 Friday, returning 15% this year, following a 33% return during 2012. The shares trade for 1.1 times tangible book value, and for 8.8 times the consensus 2014 EPS estimate of $2.49. The consensus 2013 EPS estimate is $2.09.

Based on a quarterly payout of 10 cents, the shares have a dividend yield of 1.83%.

The company reported first-quarter net income of $5.6 million, or 55 cents a share, increasing from $5.2 million, or 52 cents a share, in the fourth quarter, and $4.2 million, or 37 cents a share, in the first quarter of 2012. Like most of the banks in this group of 10, first-quarter returns were good, with an ROA of 1.09% and a return on average tangible common equity of 11.81%.

KBW analyst John Barber rates First Defiance "outperform," with a $24 price target, saying in a note to clients on April 24 that he was "pleased" to see the company's provision for loan losses decline to $425,000 in the first quarter from $2.6 million in the fourth quarter, and its annualized ratio of net charge-offs to average loans improve to 0.18% in the first quarter from 0.59% the previous quarter.

The provision for loan losses is the amount added to loan loss reserves each quarter. Net charge-offs are loan losses less recoveries.

Interested in more on First Defiance Financial? See TheStreet Ratings' report card for this stock.

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