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UPDATE: Keefe, Bruyette & Woods Downgrades NewBridge Bancorp As Shares Climb 22% Since Mid-April

Dwight Einhorn

In a report published Wednesday, Keefe, Bruyette & Woods analyst Frank Barlow downgraded the rating on NewBridge Bancorp (NASDAQ: NBBC) from Outperform to Market Perform, but reiterated the $8.50 price target.

In the report, Keefe, Bruyette & Woods noted, “We are downgrading NBBC to Market Perform from Outperform solely on valuation. The stock has increased ~22% since mid-April versus the KRX at +2%, and now trades at $8.68, slightly above our $8.50 price target. NBBC has gained significant positive momentum after repaying its remaining preferred (formerly TARP), closing its recent CapStone acquisition and announcing a 5% headcount reduction to realign its retail banking segment, and now trades at 13.4x our 2015 EPS and 1.5x year-out TBVBPS.

"While we're downgrading to Market Perform, we remain favorably inclined longer term as the company appears focused on improving its core efficiency and establishing itself as a premier NC bank.”

NewBridge Bancorp closed on Tuesday at $8.68.

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