First Financial Bancorp. (NASDAQ: FFBC) and New York Community Bancorp (NYSE:NYCB) are both finance companies, but which is the superior business? We will compare the two companies based on the strength of their analyst recommendations, valuation, dividends, institutional ownership, profitability, earnings and risk.

Risk & Volatility

First Financial Bancorp. has a beta of 1.17, meaning that its share price is 17% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, New York Community Bancorp has a beta of 0.57, meaning that its share price is 43% less volatile than the S&P 500.

Analyst Recommendations

This is a breakdown of current ratings and recommmendations for First Financial Bancorp. and New York Community Bancorp, as reported by MarketBeat.com.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
First Financial Bancorp. 1 3 3 0 2.29
New York Community Bancorp 2 6 0 0 1.75

First Financial Bancorp. currently has a consensus target price of $28.57, indicating a potential upside of 4.85%. New York Community Bancorp has a consensus target price of $12.45, indicating a potential downside of 1.11%. Given First Financial Bancorp.’s stronger consensus rating and higher probable upside, research analysts clearly believe First Financial Bancorp. is more favorable than New York Community Bancorp.

Institutional & Insider Ownership

74.6% of First Financial Bancorp. shares are owned by institutional investors. Comparatively, 57.4% of New York Community Bancorp shares are owned by institutional investors. 1.9% of First Financial Bancorp. shares are owned by insiders. Comparatively, 3.1% of New York Community Bancorp shares are owned by insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that endowments, large money managers and hedge funds believe a stock will outperform the market over the long term.

Dividends

First Financial Bancorp. pays an annual dividend of $0.68 per share and has a dividend yield of 2.5%. New York Community Bancorp pays an annual dividend of $0.68 per share and has a dividend yield of 5.4%. First Financial Bancorp. pays out 43.0% of its earnings in the form of a dividend. New York Community Bancorp pays out 78.2% of its earnings in the form of a dividend, suggesting it may not have sufficient earnings to cover its dividend payment in the future.

Profitability

This table compares First Financial Bancorp. and New York Community Bancorp’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
First Financial Bancorp. 26.49% 11.22% 1.16%
New York Community Bancorp 24.22% 7.17% 0.91%

Valuation & Earnings

This table compares First Financial Bancorp. and New York Community Bancorp’s gross revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio NetIncome Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
First Financial Bancorp. $375.55 million 4.50 $88.52 million $1.58 17.25
New York Community Bancorp $1.82 billion 3.38 $495.40 million $0.87 14.47

New York Community Bancorp has higher revenue and earnings than First Financial Bancorp.. New York Community Bancorp is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than First Financial Bancorp., indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Summary

First Financial Bancorp. beats New York Community Bancorp on 12 of the 16 factors compared between the two stocks.

First Financial Bancorp. Company Profile

First Financial Bancorp. (First Financial) is a regional bank holding company. First Financial is engaged in the business of commercial banking and other banking and banking-related activities through its subsidiary, First Financial Bank, National Association (the Bank). The range of banking services provided by First Financial to individuals and businesses include commercial lending, real estate lending and consumer financing. It offers deposit products that include interest-bearing and non-interest-bearing accounts, time deposits and cash management services for commercial customers. First Financial’s Wealth Management division provides a range of trust and asset management services. As of December 31, 2016, it operated 102 banking centers. Its banking operating markets are located within the three state region of Ohio, Indiana and Kentucky. As of December 31, 2016, it operated 60 banking centers in Ohio, 38 banking centers in Indiana and four banking centers in Kentucky.

New York Community Bancorp Company Profile

New York Community Bancorp, Inc. is a multi-bank holding company. The Company operates through its subsidiaries, New York Community Bank (the Community Bank) and New York Commercial Bank (the Commercial Bank) (collectively, the Banks). The Company’s operations are divided into two segments: Banking Operations and Residential Mortgage Banking. The Banking Operations segment serves consumers and businesses by offering and servicing a range of loan and deposit products and other financial services. The Residential Mortgage Banking segment originates, aggregates, sells and services one- to four-family mortgage loans. Mortgage loan products consist of agency-conforming, fixed and adjustable-rate loans and, to a lesser extent, jumbo loans, for the purpose of purchasing or refinancing one- to four-family homes. The Community Bank is a chartered savings bank. As of December 31, 2016, the Community Bank had 225 branches operating through seven local divisions.

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