Comparing Provident Financial Services (NYSE:PFS) & Kearny Financial (NYSE:KRNY)

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Kearny Financial (NASDAQ:KRNY) and Provident Financial Services (NYSE:PFS) are both small-cap finance companies, but which is the superior business? We will compare the two companies based on the strength of their profitability, valuation, risk, dividends, earnings, analyst recommendations and institutional ownership.

Analyst Recommendations

This is a breakdown of current recommendations for Kearny Financial and Provident Financial Services, as reported by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Kearny Financial 0 2 0 0 2.00
Provident Financial Services 0 1 1 0 2.50

Kearny Financial presently has a consensus target price of $13.25, indicating a potential upside of 48.04%. Provident Financial Services has a consensus target price of $26.00, indicating a potential upside of 98.62%. Given Provident Financial Services’ stronger consensus rating and higher possible upside, analysts clearly believe Provident Financial Services is more favorable than Kearny Financial.

Institutional and Insider Ownership

65.9% of Kearny Financial shares are owned by institutional investors. Comparatively, 66.9% of Provident Financial Services shares are owned by institutional investors. 4.6% of Kearny Financial shares are owned by insiders. Comparatively, 3.4% of Provident Financial Services shares are owned by insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that large money managers, hedge funds and endowments believe a stock will outperform the market over the long term.

Risk & Volatility

Kearny Financial has a beta of 0.5, meaning that its share price is 50% less volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Provident Financial Services has a beta of 0.63, meaning that its share price is 37% less volatile than the S&P 500.

Valuation and Earnings

This table compares Kearny Financial and Provident Financial Services’ revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio Net Income Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Kearny Financial $250.89 million 3.02 $42.14 million $0.47 19.04
Provident Financial Services $435.26 million 1.98 $112.63 million $1.74 7.52

Provident Financial Services has higher revenue and earnings than Kearny Financial. Provident Financial Services is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than Kearny Financial, indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Profitability

This table compares Kearny Financial and Provident Financial Services’ net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Kearny Financial 16.78% 3.91% 0.66%
Provident Financial Services 25.88% 8.08% 1.14%

Dividends

Kearny Financial pays an annual dividend of $0.32 per share and has a dividend yield of 3.6%. Provident Financial Services pays an annual dividend of $0.92 per share and has a dividend yield of 7.0%. Kearny Financial pays out 68.1% of its earnings in the form of a dividend. Provident Financial Services pays out 52.9% of its earnings in the form of a dividend. Both companies have healthy payout ratios and should be able to cover their dividend payments with earnings for the next several years. Kearny Financial has raised its dividend for 4 consecutive years and Provident Financial Services has raised its dividend for 9 consecutive years. Provident Financial Services is clearly the better dividend stock, given its higher yield and longer track record of dividend growth.

Summary

Provident Financial Services beats Kearny Financial on 14 of the 17 factors compared between the two stocks.

Kearny Financial Company Profile

Kearny Financial Corp. operates as the holding company for Kearny Bank that provides various banking products and services in the United States. The company offers various deposit products, including interest-bearing and non-interest-bearing checking accounts, money market deposit accounts, savings accounts, and certificates of deposit accounts. It also provides various loans, such as one-to-four family mortgage loans; commercial mortgages, including loans secured by multi-family, mixed-use, and nonresidential properties; secured and unsecured business loans; consumer loans, such as home equity loans, home equity lines of credit, account loans, overdraft lines of credit, vehicle loans, personal loans, and loans secured by savings accounts and certificates of deposit; and construction loans to builders/developers and individual homeowners. In addition, the company engages in investment activities. As of August 15, 2018, it operated a total of 54 retail branch offices located throughout northern and central New Jersey, and Brooklyn and Staten Island, New York. The company was founded in 1884 and is headquartered in Fairfield, New Jersey.

Provident Financial Services Company Profile

Provident Financial Services, Inc. operates as the holding company for Provident Bank that provides various banking services to individuals, families, and businesses in the United States. The company's deposit products include savings, checking, interest-bearing checking, money market deposit, and certificate of deposit accounts, as well as IRA, and KEOGH products. Its loan portfolio comprises commercial real estate loans that are secured by properties, such as multi-family apartment buildings, office buildings, and retail and industrial properties; commercial business loans; fixed-rate and adjustable-rate mortgage loans collateralized by one- to four-family residential real estate properties; commercial construction loans; and consumer loans consisting of home equity loans, home equity lines of credit, and marine loans. The company also offers cash management, remote deposit capture, payroll origination, escrow account management, and online and mobile banking services; and business credit cards. In addition, it provides trust and estate administration services; and asset management services comprising investment management, asset allocation, trust and estate administration, financial planning, tax compliance and planning, and family office services to individuals, municipalities, non-profits, corporations, and pension funds. Further, the company sells insurance and investment products, including annuities; operates as a real estate investment trust for acquiring mortgage loans and other real estate related assets; and manages and sells real estate properties acquired through foreclosure. As of December 31, 2018, it operated 84 full-service branch offices in northern and central New Jersey, as well as in Pennsylvania. The company was founded in 1839 and is headquartered in Jersey City, New Jersey.

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