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Should Value Investors Buy These Finance Stocks?

Here at Zacks, we focus on our proven ranking system, which places an emphasis on earnings estimates and estimate revisions, to find winning stocks. But we also understand that investors develop their own strategies, so we are constantly looking at the latest trends in value, growth, and momentum to find strong companies for our readers.

Of these, perhaps no stock market trend is more popular than value investing, which is a strategy that has proven to be successful in all sorts of market environments. Value investors use a variety of methods, including tried-and-true valuation metrics, to find these stocks.

Luckily, Zacks has developed its own Style Scores system in an effort to find stocks with specific traits. Value investors will be interested in the system's "Value" category. Stocks with both "A" grades in the Value category and high Zacks Ranks are among the strongest value stocks on the market right now.

One company to watch right now is Alerus Financial (ALRS). ALRS is currently holding a Zacks Rank of #2 (Buy) and a Value grade of A.

Value investors also love the P/S ratio, which is calculated by simply dividing a stock's price with the company's sales. Some people prefer this metric because sales are harder to manipulate on an income statement. This means it could be a truer performance indicator. ALRS has a P/S ratio of 1.98. This compares to its industry's average P/S of 2.5.

Finally, investors should note that ALRS has a P/CF ratio of 7.97. This metric takes into account a company's operating cash flow and can be used to find stocks that are undervalued based on their solid cash outlook. ALRS's current P/CF looks attractive when compared to its industry's average P/CF of 24.98. Over the past 52 weeks, ALRS's P/CF has been as high as 10.80 and as low as 7, with a median of 8.29.

If you're looking for another solid Financial - Miscellaneous Services value stock, take a look at Oportun Financial (OPRT). OPRT is a # 2 (Buy) stock with a Value score of A.

Oportun Financial sports a P/B ratio of 8.49 as well; this compares to its industry's price-to-book ratio of 4.38. In the past 52 weeks, OPRT's P/B has been as high as 20.71, as low as 1.13, with a median of 8.49.

These are just a handful of the figures considered in Alerus Financial and Oportun Financial's great Value grade. Still, they help show that the stock is likely being undervalued at the moment. Add this to the strength of its earnings outlook, and we can clearly see that ALRS and OPRT is an impressive value stock right now.

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Oportun Financial Corporation (OPRT) : Free Stock Analysis Report
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