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Should Value Investors Buy Wintrust Financial (WTFC) Stock?

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·3 min read
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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.

Looking at the history of these trends, perhaps none is more beloved than value investing. This strategy simply looks to identify companies that are being undervalued by the broader market. Value investors use tried-and-true metrics and fundamental analysis to find companies that they believe are undervalued at their current share price levels.

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 Wintrust Financial (WTFC). WTFC is currently sporting a Zacks Rank of #2 (Buy), as well as an A grade for Value.

Investors should also note that WTFC holds a PEG ratio of 0.60. This figure is similar to the commonly-used P/E ratio, with the PEG ratio also factoring in a company's expected earnings growth rate. WTFC's PEG compares to its industry's average PEG of 0.92. Over the last 12 months, WTFC's PEG has been as high as 1.01 and as low as 0.59, with a median of 0.73.

We should also highlight that WTFC has a P/B ratio of 1.19. The P/B ratio is used to compare a stock's market value with its book value, which is defined as total assets minus total liabilities. This stock's P/B looks solid versus its industry's average P/B of 1.85. Within the past 52 weeks, WTFC's P/B has been as high as 1.47 and as low as 1.01, with a median of 1.25.

Value investors also frequently use the P/S ratio. This metric is found by dividing a stock's price with the company's revenue. This is a prefered metric because revenue can't really be manipulated, so sales are often a truer performance indicator. WTFC has a P/S ratio of 2.52. This compares to its industry's average P/S of 2.8.

Finally, investors will want to recognize that WTFC has a P/CF ratio of 9.02. This data point considers a firm's operating cash flow and is frequently used to find companies that are undervalued when considering their solid cash outlook. This company's current P/CF looks solid when compared to its industry's average P/CF of 17.94. WTFC's P/CF has been as high as 10.61 and as low as 6.98, with a median of 9.13, all within the past year.

These are only a few of the key metrics included in Wintrust Financial's strong Value grade, but they help show that the stock is likely undervalued right now. When factoring in the strength of its earnings outlook, WTFC looks like an impressive value stock at the moment.

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