NEW YORK (TheStreet) – "Banks are under assault," said JPMorgan Chase (JPM) - Get Report CEO Jamie Dimon following his company's earnings disappointment Wednesday. That's not good for Goldman Sachs (GS) - Get Report , the fifth largest bank in the U.S. by assets.
Goldman Sachs reports fourth-quarter and full-year results Friday. The market is anxious to hear what the bank has to say, especially given JPMorgan's surprise 6.6% drop in quarterly profits due to higher legal costs.
For the period ending in December, analysts expect Goldman Sachs to deliver $4.32 per share in earnings on revenue of $1.64 billion. These targets represents declines of 6% and 13%, respectively. For the full year, earnings are expected to be $16.98 per share, jumping 10% year over year, according to Nasdaq. Full-year revenue is projected to be $34.46 billion, up 1% year over year.
Despite the expected 10% year over year jump in full-year earnings, shares of Goldman Sachs have lagged the broader market. The stock is down 7% on the year to date, compared with the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) and S&P 500 (SPX) , which have shed 2.2% and 2.3%, respectively. Goldman shares are up just 3% over the past year.
Still, the stock has an average analyst 12-month price target of $195, suggesting 8% gains or more. That's good value for a company that is projected to grow fiscal 2015 earnings by more than 9%. Analysts project its earnings to grow at an annual rate of 10% over the next five years.
That said, there are risks, too. Goldman Sachs relies heavily on its trading business and consults on initial public offerings to make money. When including the revenue it generates in banking/consulting fees from merger & acquisitions, Goldman has valuable businesses that are under Federal scrutiny, according to Fed Governor Daniel K. Tarullo who oversees the Dodd-Frank Act.
In his testimony, Tarullo said the Fed is looking to "tip the regulations against banks that are still thought to be too big to fail, and in favor of smaller, less-complex banks."
All that said, Goldman has yet to show any signs of deterioration and remains a well-run bank. With a return-on-equity of 10.7%, which tops Citigroup (C) - Get Report (4.5%) Morgan Stanley (MS) - Get Report (7.6%) and Bank of America (BAC) - Get Report (2.2%), Goldman Sachs still knows how to make money.
What's more, Goldman has remained a shareholder-friendly company, buying back $1.25 billion worth of shares and retiring roughly 6.5% of its float annually. With a price-to-earnings ratio of 10, which is below the industry average P/E of 14, Goldman's risk/reward ratio is on the positive side. Is dividend of 1.33%, which should increase in 2015, makes it worth the wait.
TheStreet Ratings team rates GOLDMAN SACHS GROUP INC as a Buy with a ratings score of A-. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation:
"We rate GOLDMAN SACHS GROUP INC (GS) a BUY. This is based on the convergence of positive investment measures, which should help this stock outperform the majority of stocks that we rate. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, attractive valuation levels, expanding profit margins, growth in earnings per share and increase in net income. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had somewhat disappointing return on equity."
You can view the full analysis from the report here: GS Ratings Report