Reviewing First Bancorp (FNLC) and MidSouth Bancorp (MSL)

First Bancorp (NASDAQ:FNLC) and MidSouth Bancorp (NYSE:MSL) are both small-cap finance companies, but which is the superior stock? We will contrast the two companies based on the strength of their dividends, analyst recommendations, institutional ownership, valuation, earnings, profitability and risk.

Volatility & Risk

First Bancorp has a beta of 0.62, suggesting that its stock price is 38% less volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, MidSouth Bancorp has a beta of 1.31, suggesting that its stock price is 31% more volatile than the S&P 500.

Earnings & Valuation

This table compares First Bancorp and MidSouth Bancorp’s revenue, earnings per share and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio Net Income Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
First Bancorp $83.14 million 3.40 $23.54 million N/A N/A
MidSouth Bancorp $95.06 million 2.12 -$27.52 million ($0.37) -32.54

First Bancorp has higher earnings, but lower revenue than MidSouth Bancorp.

Analyst Recommendations

This is a summary of recent ratings and recommmendations for First Bancorp and MidSouth Bancorp, as provided by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
First Bancorp 0 0 0 0 N/A
MidSouth Bancorp 0 1 2 0 2.67

MidSouth Bancorp has a consensus price target of $15.00, indicating a potential upside of 24.58%. Given MidSouth Bancorp’s higher possible upside, analysts plainly believe MidSouth Bancorp is more favorable than First Bancorp.

Dividends

First Bancorp pays an annual dividend of $1.16 per share and has a dividend yield of 4.5%. MidSouth Bancorp pays an annual dividend of $0.04 per share and has a dividend yield of 0.3%. MidSouth Bancorp pays out -10.8% of its earnings in the form of a dividend. First Bancorp has raised its dividend for 5 consecutive years. First Bancorp is clearly the better dividend stock, given its higher yield and longer track record of dividend growth.

Institutional & Insider Ownership

33.1% of First Bancorp shares are held by institutional investors. Comparatively, 70.6% of MidSouth Bancorp shares are held by institutional investors. 6.7% of First Bancorp shares are held by insiders. Comparatively, 12.8% of MidSouth Bancorp shares are held by insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that large money managers, hedge funds and endowments believe a company is poised for long-term growth.

Profitability

This table compares First Bancorp and MidSouth Bancorp’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
First Bancorp 28.13% 12.97% 1.24%
MidSouth Bancorp -28.94% -1.85% -0.20%

Summary

First Bancorp beats MidSouth Bancorp on 8 of the 15 factors compared between the two stocks.

First Bancorp Company Profile

The First Bancorp, Inc. operates as a bank. It offers demand deposits and interest and non-interest bearing time and savings deposits. The bank's deposits include jumbo deposits and retail time deposits. The company provides commercial and industrial loans, consumer loans, commercial real estate loans, and other loans and leases. It offers consumer loans, including credit card loans, revolving credit plans, and automotive loans. It offers commercial real estate loans for land development and on-site construction of industrial, commercial, residential, or farm buildings in the United States; real estate-backed residential loans; and commercial loans collateralized by real estate properties. The bank offers domestic and foreign commercial and industrial loans. It offers loans for the purpose of financing agricultural production; loans which include planned and unplanned overdrafts, to governments in non-U.S. countries, to their official institutions, and to international and regional institutions. For 2017, the company has an asset value of 1.8 million USD. The bank has generated a net income of 19,588 USD in December 31, 2017. The company was formerly known as First National Lincoln Corp. and changed its name to The First Bancorp, Inc. in May 2008. The First Bancorp, Inc. was founded in 1864 and is based in Damariscotta, Maine.

MidSouth Bancorp Company Profile

MidSouth Bancorp, Inc. offers banking products and services. It offers demand deposits and interest and non-interest bearing time and savings deposits. It's deposits include jumbo deposits and retail time deposits. It provides commercial and industrial loans, consumer loans, commercial real estate loans, and other loans and leases. It offers consumer loans, including credit card loans, revolving credit plans, and automotive loans. The bank offers commercial real estate loans for land development and on-site construction of industrial, commercial, residential, or farm buildings in the United States; real estate-backed residential loans; and commercial loans collateralized by real estate properties. It offers domestic and foreign commercial and industrial loans. The bank offers loans for the purpose of financing agricultural production; loans which include planned and unplanned overdrafts, to governments in non-U.S. countries, to their official institutions, and to international and regional institutions. For 2017, it has an asset value of 1.9 million USD. The bank has generated a net loss of -11,761 USD in December 31, 2017. MidSouth Bancorp, Inc. was founded in 1984 and is based in Lafayette, Louisiana.

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