NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Seacoast Banking Corporation (Nasdaq: SBCF) has been upgraded by TheStreet Ratings from sell to hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, impressive record of earnings per share growth and compelling growth in net income. However, as a counter to these strengths, we find that the company's return on equity has been disappointing. Highlights from the ratings report include:
- SBCF's revenue growth has slightly outpaced the industry average of 2.1%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly increased by 4.4%. Growth in the company's revenue appears to have helped boost the earnings per share.
- SEACOAST BANKING CORP/FL reported significant earnings per share improvement in the most recent quarter compared to the same quarter a year ago. The company has demonstrated a pattern of positive earnings per share growth over the past two years. We feel that this trend should continue. This trend suggests that the performance of the business is improving. During the past fiscal year, SEACOAST BANKING CORP/FL turned its bottom line around by earning $0.03 versus -$0.50 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($0.05 versus $0.03).
- Compared to where it was a year ago today, the stock is now trading at a higher level, reflecting both the market's overall trend during that period and the fact that the company's earnings growth has been robust. We feel that the combination of its price rise over the last year and its current price-to-earnings ratio relative to its industry tend to reduce its upside potential.
- The company's current return on equity greatly increased when compared to its ROE from the same quarter one year prior. This is a signal of significant strength within the corporation. Compared to other companies in the Commercial Banks industry and the overall market on the basis of return on equity, SEACOAST BANKING CORP/FL underperformed against that of the industry average and is significantly less than that of the S&P 500.
-- Written by a member of TheStreet RatingsStaff