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Given all of the recent volatility in the financial industry, it is no surprise that many companies have taken on large amounts of debt to stay alive. But not all financial companies have amassed debt, and those are that companies that have our focus today. When a company is relatively debt free, it has more freedom to pursue tactics that enhance growth, and this is especially true in the financial sector. We further narrowed our list of financial stocks to only include those that have a recent 'Buy' or better rating on average from sector analysts. We put these ideas together and developed an intriguing list of financial stocks for your consideration.

The Long Term Debt/Equity Ratio is a variation of the traditional debt-to-equity ratio; this value computes the proportion of a company's long-term debt compared to its available capital. By using this ratio, investors can identify the amount of leverage utilized by a specific company and compare it to others to help analyze the company's risk exposure. Generally, companies that finance a greater portion of their capital via debt are considered riskier than those with lower leverage ratios.

The Debt/Equity Ratio illustrates how aggressively a company is financing its growth via debt. The more debt financing that is used in a capital structure, the more volatile earnings can become due to the additional interest expense. Should a company's potentially enhanced earnings fail to exceed the cost associated with debt financing over time, this can lead the company toward substantial trouble.

We first looked for financial stocks. We next screened for businesses that analysts rate as "Buy" (2 < mean recommendation < 3). We then screened for businesses that have maintained a sound long term capital structure (Long Term D/E Ratio<.1). We next screened for businesses that operate with little to no debt (D/E Ratio<.1). We did not screen out any market caps.

Do you think these stocks will trade at a higher valuation? Use our list along with your own analysis.

1) 1st United Bancorp, Inc. (NASDAQ:FUBC)

SectorFinancial
IndustryRegional - Mid-Atlantic Banks
Market Cap$203.74M
Beta0.96

FUBC stock chart

Key Metrics

Analysts' Rating2.40
Long Term Debt/Equity Ratio0.00
Debt/Equity Ratio0.04
Short Interest2.69%

1st United Bancorp, Inc. operates as the financial holding company for 1st United Bank that provides financial services to residents and businesses in Florida. Its deposit products include checking accounts, money market accounts, certificates of deposit, individual retirement accounts, sweep investment capabilities, negotiable order of withdrawal accounts, savings accounts, time deposits, and demand deposits. The company's loan portfolio comprises commercial loans consisting of collateralized loans for working capital, business expansion, and purchase of equipment and machinery; small business loans; export-import bank insured or guaranteed loans; residential real estate loans for borrowers to purchase, refinance, and construct upon or improve real property; home equity loans; and consumer loans, including collateralized and uncollateralized loans for financing automobiles, boats, home improvements, and personal investments. It also provides automated teller machine, telephone, and Internet banking services. As of February 8, 2012, the company operated 19 branches in Brevard, Broward, Indian River, Miami-Dade, Palm Beach, Pasco, and Pinellas counties in South Florida. 1st United Bancorp, Inc. is headquartered in Boca Raton, Florida.

2) Anworth Mortgage Asset Corporation (NYSE:ANH)

SectorFinancial
IndustryREIT - Diversified
Market Cap$932.57M
Beta0.20

ANH stock chart

Key Metrics

Analysts' Rating2.50
Long Term Debt/Equity Ratio0.03
Debt/Equity Ratio0.03
Short Interest4.03%

Anworth Mortgage Asset Corporation is a publicly owned real estate investment trust. The firm invests in the fixed income and real estate markets of the United States. It primarily invests in United States agency mortgage-backed securities issued or guaranteed by United States government sponsored entities including mortgage pass-through certificates, collateralized mortgage obligations, and other real estate securities, on a leveraged basis. The firm benchmarks the performance of its portfolio against the S&P 500 Index and the NAREIT Mortgage REIT Index. Anworth Mortgage Asset Corporation was founded on October 20, 1997 and is based in Santa Monica, California.

3) SeaBright Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:SBX)

SectorFinancial
IndustrySurety & Title Insurance
Market Cap$182.21M
Beta0.58

SBX stock chart

Key Metrics

Analysts' Rating2.50
Long Term Debt/Equity Ratio0.03
Debt/Equity Ratio0.03
Short Interest2.75%

SeaBright Holdings, Inc., through its subsidiaries, underwrites multi-jurisdictional workers' compensation insurance for maritime customers, state act customers, and employers in the construction industry in the United States. The company provides workers' compensation insurance coverage for prescribed benefits that employers are required to provide to their employees who may be injured in the course of their employment. It also offers related wholesale brokerage services, and distributes state act, maritime, and alternative dispute resolution products; and provides integrated managed medical care services, including medical bill review, utilization review, physician case management, and related services to SeaBright Insurance Company and non-affiliated entities. SeaBright Holdings distributes its products primarily through independent brokers. The company was formerly known as SeaBright Insurance Holdings, Inc. and changed its name to SeaBright Holdings, Inc. in May 2010. The company was founded in 1986 and is headquartered in Seattle, Washington.

4) First Republic Bank (NYSE:FRC)

SectorFinancial
IndustryMoney Center Banks
Market Cap$4.18B
Beta-

FRC stock chart

Key Metrics

Analysts' Rating2.40
Long Term Debt/Equity Ratio0.04
Debt/Equity Ratio0.04
Short Interest3.05%

First Republic Bank, together with its subsidiaries, provides personalized relationship-based preferred banking and business banking, real estate lending, trust, and wealth management services to clients in metropolitan areas of the United States. Its deposit products include checking, money market checking, savings, and passbook deposits, as well as certificates of deposit. The company's loan portfolio comprises residential mortgage loans and lines of credit, commercial real estate loans, residential construction loans, small business loans, personal loans, and Eagle One lines of credit. It also provides wealth management services, which include various investment strategies and products, trust and custody services, full service and online brokerage, financial and estate planning, access to alternative investments, socially responsible investing, and foreign exchange. The company offers its products and services through 63 offices, including 58 preferred banking licensed deposit-taking offices in 8 metropolitan areas, such as San Francisco, Los Angeles, Santa Barbara, Newport Beach, San Diego, New York City, Boston, and Portland; and 5 offices in Santa Barbara, Honolulu, Seattle, Salem, and Las Vegas that offer exclusively lending, wealth management, and trust services. First Republic Bank was founded in 1985 and is headquartered in San Francisco, California. It was formerly a subsidiary of Merrill Lynch & Co., Inc.

5) T. Rowe Price Group, Inc. (NASDAQ:TROW)

SectorFinancial
IndustryAsset Management
Market Cap$15.65B
Beta1.62

TROW stock chart

Key Metrics

Analysts' Rating2.50
Long Term Debt/Equity Ratio0.00
Debt/Equity Ratio0.00
Short Interest1.73%

T. Rowe Price Group, Inc. is a publicly owned asset management holding company. The firm primarily provides its services to individual and institutional investors, retirement plans, and financial intermediaries. Through its subsidiaries, it manages separate client-focused equity, fixed income, and balanced portfolios. The firm also launches equity, fixed income, and balanced mutual funds for its clients. It invests in the public equity, fixed income, and venture capital markets across the globe. The firm was previously known as T. Rowe Price Associates, Inc. T. Rowe Price Group was founded in 1937 and is based in Baltimore, Maryland with additional offices in London, United Kingdom; Central Hong Kong, Hong Kong; Tokyo, Japan; and Singapore.

6) Heritage Financial Corp. (NASDAQ:HFWA)

SectorFinancial
IndustryRegional - Pacific Banks
Market Cap$207.57M
Beta0.54

HFWA stock chart

Key Metrics

Analysts' Rating2.30
Long Term Debt/Equity Ratio0.00
Debt/Equity Ratio0.07
Short Interest4.85%

Heritage Financial Corporation operates as the holding company for Heritage Bank and Central Valley Bank that provide various financial services to small businesses and general public. The company offers various deposit accounts, which comprise non-interest demand accounts, negotiable order of withdrawal accounts, money market accounts, savings accounts, and certificates of deposit. Its loan portfolio comprises commercial and industrial loans, mortgage loans, multifamily and commercial real estate loans, one-to four-family residential loans, construction loans, consumer loans, and lines of credit, as well as commercial loans to real estate related industries and businesses in agricultural, healthcare, legal, and other professions. The company serves through its main offices in Olympia and Toppenish, Washington, as well as through 26 branch offices in western Washington and the greater Portland, and 5 branch offices in Yakima and Kittitas counties. Heritage Financial Corporation was founded in 1997 and is headquartered in Olympia, Washington.

7) BankUnited, Inc. (NYSE:BKU)

SectorFinancial
IndustryRegional - Mid-Atlantic Banks
Market Cap$2.39B
Beta-

BKU stock chart

Key Metrics

Analysts' Rating2.40
Long Term Debt/Equity Ratio0.00
Debt/Equity Ratio0.03
Short Interest2.86%

BankUnited, Inc., a bank holding company, provides a range of banking products and financial services to commercial and middle-market businesses, as well as individual customers primarily in Florida, the United States. The company's deposit products comprise checking accounts, money market deposit accounts, savings accounts, and certificates of deposit. Its loan portfolio includes one to four single family residential first mortgages, home equity loans and lines of credit, multi-family, commercial real estate, construction, land, commercial and consumer loans, and small business and municipal leases. The company also offers wealth management products, such as mutual funds, annuities, life insurance, and individual securities; comprehensive succession planning, estate planning, and financial planning to individuals and business owners; and trading platform, administrative and back office support, portfolio views, transaction detail, and online statements services through a third-party financial services company. In addition, it offers automated teller machine (ATM), online banking, and telephone banking services. As of December 31, 2011, BankUnited, Inc. operated 95 branches located in 15 counties in Florida; and 91 ATMs. The company, formerly known as BU Financial Corporation, was founded in 2009 and is headquartered in Miami Lakes, Florida.

*Company profiles were sourced from Google Finance and Yahoo Finance. Financial data was sourced from Finviz on 08/24/2012.

Source: 7 Buy-Rated Financials With Very Low Levels Of Debt