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3 Reasons Why BOK Financial (BOKF) Stock is a Must Buy Now

Zacks Equity Research

Most banking stocks have delivered better-than-expected results in first-quarter 2017. In fact, amid an improving rate scenario, the banking industry seems to have been one of the best performers. So, we thought of highlighting a bank stock -- BOK Financial Corporation BOKF -- which is likely to gain significantly based on strong fundamentals.

BOK Financial has been witnessing upward estimate revisions, reflecting analysts’ optimism. In the last 30 days, the Zacks Consensus Estimate for 2017 and 2018 increased 14% and 7.5%, respectively.

The company currently sports a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.

Shares of BOK Financial gained 36.1% in the last one year, outpacing the 32.4% growth for the Zacks categorized Banks - Southwest industry. Moreover, the company has a Momentum Score of ‘B’. Our research shows that stocks with a Style Score of ‘A’ or ‘B,’ when combined with a Zacks Rank #1 or 2 (Buy), offer the best upside potential.

BOK Financial has a number of other aspects that make it an attractive investment option.

Earnings Per Share Growth: BOK Financial witnessed EPS growth of 41.5% in the last three-five years, higher than the industry’s average of 12.6%. This earnings momentum is likely to continue in the near term as reflected by the company’s projected EPS growth (F1/F0) of 47.9%.

Also, the company’s long-term (three–five years) estimated EPS growth rate of 8% promises reward for investors in the long run.

Revenue Strength: BOK Financial’s revenues increased at a CAGR of 3.2% in the last four years (2013–2016). Also, the top line is expected to grow nearly 5.6% in 2017.

Moreover, the company has been witnessing impressive loan growth for the last few years, despite a tough industry backdrop. Management expects loan growth to continue in the quarters ahead. A steady growth in loans should further support revenue generation.

Efficient Capital Deployment: BOK Financial has an effective capital deployment strategy in place. The company started paying cash dividends in 2005 and since then it has been hiking its dividend every year, with the latest hike of 2.3% in Oct 2016. Given a strong capital position, the company should continue enhancing shareholder value through such shareholder-friendly approaches.

Other Stocks to Consider

Some other top-ranked stocks in the finance space are Synovus Financial Corp. SNV, Carolina Financial Corporation CARO and Farmers Capital Bank Corporation FFKT.

Synovus Financial witnessed an upward earnings estimate revision of 8% for the current year, in the last 60 days. Its share price increased 9.4%, in the last six months. It currently sports a Zacks Rank #1.

Carolina carries a Zacks Rank #2. It witnessed an upward earnings estimate revision of 2.3% for the current year, in the last 60 days. In the last six months, its share price increased 20.9%.

Farmers Capital also carries a Zacks Rank #2. For the current year, in the last 60 days, its Zacks Consensus Estimate has been revised 2.9% upward. Its share price increased 23.8% in the last six months.

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