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  • should be a net positive rather than a negative
    as the accretion of several past deals will be
    larger than dilution from new deal(s). Anything larger
    than stated size would be a MOE and non-dilutive by
    definition. Other earnings positives include (1)excellent
    asset quality and lower provisioning compared to peers;
    (2)non-interest income growing above peer average (32% year over
    year)and faster than non-imterest expense (5% year over
    year); (3)EPS growth rate ahead of peers; (4) solid top
    line revenue growth; (5) operating in strong
    southeastern growth markets.

    Other factors include: low
    institutional ownership relative to peers (probably half),
    growing record and reputation as a top performer in the
    industry. The current P/E is 18 - even if it doesn't expand
    based on investor quality discrimination. Back of an
    envelope math - at $2.20 eps for 2000 (13% growth rate
    compared to 19.5% for first six months of 1999), you get
    $40 rounded. You can argue that EPS and P/E may be
    higher or lower.
    However, all this plus fact that the
    stock has languished between $35 and $40 for a number
    of months leads me to feel positive about 12 - 18
    month outlook (assuming no external negatives i.e.
    China attacks Taiwan, N Korea goes crazy or as I said
    earlier, rates spike upward, which would delay the

    These factors may satisfy me more than anyone else, but
    I feel good about the long term outlook for this
    stock. And I like a dividend that grows in double digits
    annually in a low single digit inflation economy, whether
    the stock goes up or down! My income from this stock
    is up 13% this year over last.


38.62-0.04(-0.10%)Nov 30 4:00 PMEST