SunTrust Banks Inc (STI): Today's Featured Banking Winner

Editor's Note: TheStreet ratings do not represent the views of TheStreet's staff or its contributors. Ratings are established by computer based on metrics for performance (which includes growth, stock performance, efficiency and valuation) and risk (volatility and solvency). Companies with poor cash flow or high debt levels tend to earn lower ratings in our model.

SunTrust Banks ( STI) pushed the Banking industry higher today making it today's featured banking winner. The industry as a whole was unchanged today. By the end of trading, SunTrust Banks rose 34 cents (1.1%) to $30.31 on average volume. Throughout the day, 6.9 million shares of SunTrust Banks exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 5.8 million shares. The stock ranged in a price between $30.02-$30.59 after having opened the day at $30.20 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $29.97. Other companies within the Banking industry that increased today were: Atlantic Coast Financial ( ACFC), up 14.4%, Magyar Bancorp ( MGYR), up 9.9%, First Federal of Northern Michigan Bancorp ( FFNM), up 8.9%, and MBT Financial Corporation ( MBTF), up 8.8%.
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SunTrust Banks, Inc. operates as the holding company for SunTrust Bank, which provides various financial services in the United States. SunTrust Banks has a market cap of $15.77 billion and is part of the financial sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 19.7, below the average banking industry P/E ratio of 19.8 and above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 65.4% year to date as of the close of trading on Thursday. Currently there are 17 analysts that rate SunTrust Banks a buy, three analysts rate it a sell, and seven rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates SunTrust Banks as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its impressive record of earnings per share growth, compelling growth in net income, good cash flow from operations, expanding profit margins and solid stock price performance. Although no company is perfect, currently we do not see any significant weaknesses which are likely to detract from the generally positive outlook.

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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