First Niagara Financial Group (NASDAQ: FNFG) and CommunityOne Bancorp (NASDAQ:COB) are both financials companies, but which is the superior investment? We will compare the two businesses based on the strength of their dividends, risk, analyst recommendations, earnings, valuation, profitabiliy and institutional ownership.

Valuation & Earnings

This table compares First Niagara Financial Group and CommunityOne Bancorp’s revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio EBITDA Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
First Niagara Financial Group N/A N/A N/A $0.49 20.78
CommunityOne Bancorp N/A N/A N/A $0.39 36.15

First Niagara Financial Group is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than CommunityOne Bancorp, indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Analyst Recommendations

This is a breakdown of current ratings and recommmendations for First Niagara Financial Group and CommunityOne Bancorp, as reported by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
First Niagara Financial Group 0 0 0 0 N/A
CommunityOne Bancorp 0 0 0 0 N/A

Risk & Volatility

First Niagara Financial Group has a beta of 0.94, suggesting that its stock price is 6% less volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, CommunityOne Bancorp has a beta of 0.72, suggesting that its stock price is 28% less volatile than the S&P 500.

Profitability

This table compares First Niagara Financial Group and CommunityOne Bancorp’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
First Niagara Financial Group 14.04% 4.06% 0.47%
CommunityOne Bancorp 16.60% 5.49% 0.66%

Insider and Institutional Ownership

65.8% of CommunityOne Bancorp shares are held by institutional investors. 49.2% of CommunityOne Bancorp shares are held by company insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that large money managers, endowments and hedge funds believe a company will outperform the market over the long term.

Dividends

First Niagara Financial Group pays an annual dividend of $0.32 per share and has a dividend yield of 3.1%. CommunityOne Bancorp does not pay a dividend. First Niagara Financial Group pays out 65.3% of its earnings in the form of a dividend.

Summary

CommunityOne Bancorp beats First Niagara Financial Group on 6 of the 9 factors compared between the two stocks.

First Niagara Financial Group Company Profile

First Niagara Financial Group Inc. is a bank holding company for First Niagara Bank, N.A. (the Bank). The Bank is engaged in providing financial services to individuals and businesses in New York, Western and Eastern Pennsylvania, Connecticut, and Western Massachusetts. The Bank is a nationally chartered regional bank providing financial services to individuals, families and businesses. The Bank operates through two segments: banking and financial services. The banking segment includes all of its retail and commercial banking operations. The financial services segment includes its insurance operations. Its financial services activities consist predominantly of insurance sales. Its financial services activities consist of insurance sales. The Bank provides a range of products and services through its retail consumer, commercial, business services and wealth management operations, including retail banking, cash management, insurance and wealth management products.

CommunityOne Bancorp Company Profile

CommunityOne Bancorp (COB) is a bank holding company. The Company, through the ownership of CommunityOne Bank, N.A., or the Bank, a national banking association, offers consumer, mortgage and business banking services, including loan, deposit, treasury management, online and mobile banking services, as well as wealth management and trust services, to individual, and small and middle market businesses through financial centers located across central, southern and western North Carolina. The Bank operates over 40 branches. In addition to the Bank, the Company owns FNB United Statutory Trust I, FNB United Statutory Trust II, and Catawba Valley Capital Trust II, which were formed to facilitate the issuance of trust preferred securities. The Bank’s loans totaled approximately $1.54 billion. The Bank’s total investment securities totaled approximately $546.782 million. The Bank’s deposits totaled approximately $1.95 billion.

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