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EXCLUSIVE OFFER: Jim Cramer's Protégé, Dave Peltier, only buys Stock Under $10 that he thinks could potentially double or triple in the next 6 to 12-months. See what he's trading today with a 14-day FREE pass.

First Republic Bank (San Francisco CA) (FRC): Today's Featured Banking Winner

Editor's Note: Any reference to TheStreet Ratings and its underlying recommendation does not reflect the opinion of TheStreet, Inc. or any of its contributors including Jim Cramer or Stephanie Link.

First Republic Bank (San Francisco CA ( FRC) pushed the Banking industry higher today making it today's featured banking winner. The industry as a whole closed the day up 0.6%. By the end of trading, First Republic Bank (San Francisco CA rose $1.03 (2.2%) to $47.03 on heavy volume. Throughout the day, 1,927,151 shares of First Republic Bank (San Francisco CA exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 1,191,600 shares. The stock ranged in a price between $46.04-$47.03 after having opened the day at $46.07 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $46.00. Other companies within the Banking industry that increased today were: Credit Suisse ( DSLV), up 16.4%, Bank of the James Financial Group ( BOTJ), up 11.8%, Naugatuck Valley Financial Corporation ( NVSL), up 11.5% and Porter Bancorp ( PBIB), up 10.3%.

First Republic Bank, together with its subsidiaries, provides personalized, relationship-based preferred banking, business banking, real estate lending, trust, and wealth management services to clients in metropolitan areas of the United States. First Republic Bank (San Francisco CA has a market cap of $6.2 billion and is part of the financial sector. Shares are up 42.7% year to date as of the close of trading on Thursday. Currently there are 9 analysts that rate First Republic Bank (San Francisco CA a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 5 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates First Republic Bank (San Francisco CA as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, expanding profit margins, good cash flow from operations, solid stock price performance and impressive record of earnings per share growth. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had somewhat disappointing return on equity.

On the negative front, Hampton Roads Bankshares ( HMPR), down 12.6%, Bank Bradesco ( BBDO), down 10.4%, Carrollton Bancorp ( CRRB), down 10.3% and OptimumBank Holdings ( OPHC), down 8.7% , were all laggards within the banking industry with Bank of America Corporation ( BAC) being today's banking industry laggard.

For investors not wanting singular stock exposure, ETFs may be of interest. Investors who are bullish on the banking industry could consider KBW Bank ETF ( KBE) while those bearish on the banking industry could consider ProShares Short KBW Regional Bankng ( KRS).

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