NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- National Bank of Greece (NBG) shares are gaining, up 5.97% to $1.42, in trading on Monday ahead of a 1 p.m. meeting between German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Greece President Alexis Tsipras as investors hope that a meeting between the dignitaries will cool some of the heated exchanges between the two Eurozone countries over Greece's debt repayments.
The meeting is the latest chapter in a disagreement between the two countries over the repayment of Greece's $262 billion bailout debt. On Friday, Tsipras reportedly told EU leaders that he would soon provide a full report on the economic reforms the country plans to make in order to repay the debt.
Complicating negotiations is Greece's insistence on $109 billion in restitution from German defense firms over bribes it said they paid to the previous administration to win defense contracts. One of Germany's defense contractors paid a 37 million euro fine in December following a criminal investigation of suspected bribes in Greece arms deals.
Separately, TheStreet Ratings team rates NATIONAL BANK OF GREECE as a Sell with a ratings score of D. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation:
"We rate NATIONAL BANK OF GREECE (NBG) a SELL. This is driven by a number of negative factors, which we believe should have a greater impact than any strengths, and could make it more difficult for investors to achieve positive results compared to most of the stocks we cover. Among the areas we feel are negative, one of the most important has been a generally disappointing historical performance in the stock itself."
Highlights from the analysis by TheStreet Ratings Team goes as follows:
- NBG's stock share price has done very poorly compared to where it was a year ago: Despite any rallies, the net result is that it is down by 78.69%, which is also worse that the performance of the S&P 500 Index. Investors have so far failed to pay much attention to the earnings improvements the company has managed to achieve over the last quarter. Naturally, the overall market trend is bound to be a significant factor. However, in one sense, the stock's sharp decline last year is a positive for future investors, making it cheaper (in proportion to its earnings over the past year) than most other stocks in its industry. But due to other concerns, we feel the stock is still not a good buy right now.
- NBG, with its decline in revenue, underperformed when compared the industry average of 2.3%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues fell by 30.3%. The declining revenue has not hurt the company's bottom line, with increasing earnings per share.
- Net operating cash flow has increased to -$344.49 million or 38.74% when compared to the same quarter last year. Despite an increase in cash flow of 38.74%, NATIONAL BANK OF GREECE is still growing at a significantly lower rate than the industry average of 294.77%.
- 36.50% is the gross profit margin for NATIONAL BANK OF GREECE which we consider to be strong. It has increased from the same quarter the previous year. Regardless of the strong results of the gross profit margin, the net profit margin of -5.49% is in-line with the industry average.
- Current return on equity exceeded its ROE from the same quarter one year prior. This is a clear sign of strength within the company. Compared to other companies in the Commercial Banks industry and the overall market, NATIONAL BANK OF GREECE's return on equity exceeds that of both the industry average and the S&P 500.
- You can view the full analysis from the report here: NBG Ratings Report
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