Old Line Bancshares, Inc. (MD) (NASDAQ: OLBK) and Ameris Bancorp (NASDAQ:ABCB) are both small-cap financials companies, but which is the superior stock? We will contrast the two businesses based on the strength of their institutional ownership, earnings, profitability, risk, analyst recommendations, valuation and dividends.

Insider & Institutional Ownership

47.9% of Old Line Bancshares, Inc. (MD) shares are owned by institutional investors. Comparatively, 84.1% of Ameris Bancorp shares are owned by institutional investors. 25.1% of Old Line Bancshares, Inc. (MD) shares are owned by company insiders. Comparatively, 3.6% of Ameris Bancorp shares are owned by company insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that hedge funds, endowments and large money managers believe a company will outperform the market over the long term.

Dividends

Old Line Bancshares, Inc. (MD) pays an annual dividend of $0.32 per share and has a dividend yield of 1.2%. Ameris Bancorp pays an annual dividend of $0.40 per share and has a dividend yield of 0.9%. Old Line Bancshares, Inc. (MD) pays out 23.7% of its earnings in the form of a dividend. Ameris Bancorp pays out 17.1% 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.

Risk and Volatility

Old Line Bancshares, Inc. (MD) has a beta of 0.25, suggesting that its stock price is 75% less volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Ameris Bancorp has a beta of 1.27, suggesting that its stock price is 27% more volatile than the S&P 500.

Profitability

This table compares Old Line Bancshares, Inc. (MD) and Ameris Bancorp’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Old Line Bancshares, Inc. (MD) 24.43% 10.07% 0.89%
Ameris Bancorp 22.66% 12.52% 1.27%

Analyst Recommendations

This is a summary of recent ratings and price targets for Old Line Bancshares, Inc. (MD) and Ameris Bancorp, as provided by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Old Line Bancshares, Inc. (MD) 0 1 1 0 2.50
Ameris Bancorp 0 4 2 0 2.33

Old Line Bancshares, Inc. (MD) currently has a consensus price target of $29.00, indicating a potential upside of 10.22%. Ameris Bancorp has a consensus price target of $49.20, indicating a potential upside of 13.76%. Given Ameris Bancorp’s higher possible upside, analysts plainly believe Ameris Bancorp is more favorable than Old Line Bancshares, Inc. (MD).

Valuation and Earnings

This table compares Old Line Bancshares, Inc. (MD) and Ameris Bancorp’s gross revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio EBITDA Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Old Line Bancshares, Inc. (MD) $62.10 million 4.64 $14.79 million $1.35 19.49
Ameris Bancorp $338.02 million 4.75 $86.96 million $2.34 18.48

Ameris Bancorp has higher revenue and earnings than Old Line Bancshares, Inc. (MD). Ameris Bancorp is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than Old Line Bancshares, Inc. (MD), indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Summary

Ameris Bancorp beats Old Line Bancshares, Inc. (MD) on 11 of the 16 factors compared between the two stocks.

Old Line Bancshares, Inc. (MD) Company Profile

Old Line Bancshares, Inc. is the holding company of Old Line Bank (The Bank). The Bank is a chartered trust company engaged in commercial banking business, making various types of loans, investments and accepting deposits. The Bank markets its financial services to small to medium sized businesses, entrepreneurs, professionals, consumers and clients. The Bank, through its division Old Line Financial Services, provides retirement planning and products, as well as investment services, including investment management, estate and succession planning, and allows its customers to directly purchase individual stocks, bonds and mutual funds. The Bank offers its customers safe deposit boxes, wire transfer services, debit cards, prepaid cards, automated teller machines at all of its branch locations, investment services and credit cards through a third party processor.

Ameris Bancorp Company Profile

Ameris Bancorp is a financial holding company. The Company’s business is conducted through its banking subsidiary, Ameris Bank (the Bank), which provides a range of banking services to its retail and commercial customers. The Company operates through four segments: the Banking Division, the Retail Mortgage Division, the Warehouse Lending Division and the SBA Division. The Banking Division is engaged in the delivery of financial services, which include commercial loans, consumer loans and deposit accounts. The Retail Mortgage Division is engaged in the origination, sales and servicing of one- to four-family residential mortgage loans. The Warehouse Lending Division is engaged in the origination and servicing of warehouse lines to other businesses that are secured by underlying one- to four-family residential mortgage loans. The SBA Division is engaged in the origination, sales and servicing of small business administration (SBA) loans.

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