Hi - I (still) like this stock, but remember that it's in a slow growth neighborhood and buying a little more scale and scope probably won't move the needle much. But by chance I was in a People's Bank (supermarket) branch ... and if you look at their "footprint," NHTB looks like a deer in the headlights. Of course, it could take years and who knows what premium might eventuate, but I'd be surprised if NHTB outperformed its peer group in the absence of merger possibilities ... or the reality of same.
If you look at a few key metrics NHTB seems like a far better investment than PBCT it's book vs. current price is about 20% less than Peoples it's PE is under 13 vs. PBCT at 20 times and another big indicator of a stock performance is inside ownership and NHTB has more 10 times greater insider ownership. True it's footprint is not in huge high growth areas although their move to southern NH is a step in the right direction to improve growth prospects and if done right Charter can be very accretive.
All and all NHTB is undervalued when compared to it's peers and I suspect that a reversion to the mean will lift it's share price nicely over the next two years. Not one investment bank follows it Sandler , KBW now Stifel . I am surprised that they have not had any research done on them that might be speaking to your low growth outlook.
My earlier prediction of $17 bucks or more by this next April still stands especially if the CEVT integration goes well. The franchise is worth more than it is currently trading at . Lastly one of my favorite tells on this stock is the recent buy of it's shares by Motley Fools asset management's arm!!!