You'll get burned listening to brokerage recommendations. Develop your own criterea for purchase. Just think of all the cash BA and Microsoft are generating in Washington and the trickle down effect it has for the local economy. At 2xB WFSL is a little expensive and a yield of 3% is a little low but it's worth nibbling. At 28 and under I would take serious bites.
I'm interested in smaller banks and S&Ls on the west coast with little or no brokerage coverage. Any recommendations?
I think a great play is the IPO. Find a small S&l that is near you that is slated to go public. You can find that info a nuch of places. Open an account and get in on the IPO. I live in Dayton, OH and People's Sidney north of me went public at $10, it's now at $17.25 about 9 months later. I read a Peter Lynch book in which he swears they always make the offering price too low on purpose!
I have read about this as well. For clarification to all, when Mutual Savings Institutions want to go public they are required to offer the shares in the IPO to the depositors (technically the owners of the Mutual Savings Institution). I have tried opening up accounts at various MSIs but many have restrictions that prohibit out of towners from opening accounts. If anyone finds any MSIs out there that will permit out of town account holders, please let me know. I have one account open at one MSI near me and am just waiting for them to go public. They were ion Lynch's list of those likely to go public.
Give a look at WABC. Headquartered in N. California, has the largest market share in 2 of CA's wealthiest counties: Marin and Napa. Has grown extensively via acquisition, and it appears might be ripe for a split. Some feel that WABC could be doing window dressing for a possible sale - wouldn't be out of the question - but either way you will make a wise investment.
I too am interested in others on the west coast. If you get any ideas, please post them here.
Bay View Capital Corp (BVCC) a definite power play and great turnaround Company. They have been acquiring thrifts and other finance related businesses during the past 18 months. They have a strong Bay Area franchise and a very aggressive new CFO and management team. Look for one or two acquisitions in 1998 and then BVCC will be set up to be acquired in late 1998 or 1999. The SF Bay Area including Santa Clara County is one of the hottest growing areas in the USA. Happy Investing!
SABB, MTTB and BSMC are somewhat expensive but are good long term investments. SLNB is well thought of by bankers and the public but it's so small it's next to impossible to get shares. HEOP is another growing bank, very small but shares will come to you if you're patient.