Contrasting SmartFinancial (SMBK) & Citizens First (CZFC)

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SmartFinancial (NASDAQ:SMBK) and Citizens First (NASDAQ:CZFC) are both small-cap finance companies, but which is the superior business? We will contrast the two businesses based on the strength of their risk, valuation, dividends, profitability, institutional ownership, earnings and analyst recommendations.

Dividends

Citizens First pays an annual dividend of $0.28 per share and has a dividend yield of 1.2%. SmartFinancial does not pay a dividend. Citizens First has raised its dividend for 3 consecutive years.

Risk and Volatility

SmartFinancial has a beta of 0.52, meaning that its share price is 48% less volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Citizens First has a beta of 0.41, meaning that its share price is 59% less volatile than the S&P 500.

Profitability

This table compares SmartFinancial and Citizens First’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
SmartFinancial 18.30% 8.30% 1.00%
Citizens First 20.22% 10.13% 1.00%

Valuation and Earnings

This table compares SmartFinancial and Citizens First’s gross revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio Net Income Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
SmartFinancial $98.76 million 2.71 $18.11 million $1.55 12.40
Citizens First $23.84 million 2.39 $4.82 million N/A N/A

SmartFinancial has higher revenue and earnings than Citizens First.

Analyst Ratings

This is a summary of recent recommendations and price targets for SmartFinancial and Citizens First, as provided by MarketBeat.com.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
SmartFinancial 0 2 2 0 2.50
Citizens First 0 0 0 0 N/A

SmartFinancial currently has a consensus price target of $25.50, suggesting a potential upside of 32.67%. Given SmartFinancial’s higher possible upside, equities research analysts clearly believe SmartFinancial is more favorable than Citizens First.

Insider & Institutional Ownership

34.2% of SmartFinancial shares are held by institutional investors. Comparatively, 29.4% of Citizens First shares are held by institutional investors. 12.0% of SmartFinancial shares are held by company insiders. Comparatively, 12.1% of Citizens First shares are held by company insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that hedge funds, endowments and large money managers believe a stock will outperform the market over the long term.

Summary

SmartFinancial beats Citizens First on 8 of the 13 factors compared between the two stocks.

SmartFinancial Company Profile

SmartFinancial, Inc. operates as the bank holding company for the SmartBank that provides various financial services to individuals and corporate customers in the United States. The company offers various deposit products, including interest bearing and non-interest bearing checking accounts, savings accounts, money market accounts, individual retirement accounts, and certificates of deposit. It also provides commercial real estate loans, consumer real estate loans, construction and land development loans, commercial and industrial loans, including commercial, financial, and agricultural loans, and consumer and other loans, such as direct consumer installment loans, overdrafts and other revolving credit loans, and educational loans. In addition, the company offers Internet and mobile banking services. As of December 31, 2017, it operated through 22 full-service branches located in Tennessee, Alabama, and Florida; and 1 loan production office, 2 mortgage loan production offices, and 2 service centers. SmartFinancial, Inc. is headquartered in Knoxville, Tennessee.

Citizens First Company Profile

Citizens First Corporation operates as the bank holding company for Citizens First Bank, Inc. that provides various banking products and services primarily to small and medium-sized businesses, and retail consumers. The company offers a range of deposit products and services, including checking accounts, savings accounts, NOW accounts, money market accounts, sweep accounts, fixed and variable rate IRA accounts, Christmas Club accounts, and certificate of deposit accounts. It provides various loan products, including secured and unsecured commercial loans; commercial real estate loans, such as loans secured by multi-family residential units, income-producing properties, and owner-occupied commercial properties; construction loans; and consumer loans comprising personal loans and lines of credit to consumers for various purposes, including the purchase of automobiles, boats, and other recreational vehicles, as well as for home improvements and personal investments. In addition, the company offers residential real estate mortgage loans for borrowers to purchase and refinance one-to-four family properties; and home equity loans and home equity lines of credit. Further, it provides debit and credit cards, safekeeping and safe deposit boxes, ACH and other direct deposit services, savings bond redemptions, cashier's checks, travelers' checks, and letters of credit, as well as cash management services, wire transfer services, and loan participations. The company conducts full-service community banking operations from eight locations in Barren, Hart, Simpson, and Warren Counties in Kentucky; and a loan production office in Williamson County, Tennessee. Citizens First Corporation was founded in 1975 and is headquartered in Bowling Green, Kentucky.

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