BTIG Steps to Sidelines on Bancorp Inc (TBBK); Shares Fall 5%

BTIG analyst Mark Palmer is stepping left and downgrading Bancorp Inc (NASDAQ:TBBK) from a Buy to a Neutral rating after the financial holding firm’s shares achieved his former price target of $8. Subsequently, the analyst has removed the price target. Yesterday’s and today’s dips are preceded by a rally of roughly 67% since August.

The analyst expects the stock to stabilize, noting, “While we believe TBBK during 2017 may finally reach an inflection point at which the various regulatory and operational challenges that have plagued it during the past three years will recede, we also think that following a rally of almost 67% since August 10, expectations of the company’s stabilization are already baked into the stock. As such, we are moving to the sidelines on TBBK and would look to re-engage the name in the event of a pullback.”

Bancorp completed its engagement with the lookback consultant assisting it with achievement of BSA/AML compliance, the legal requirements regarding record taking to ensure the absence of money laundering in non-bank financial institutions. These efforts had created a significant drain on resources for previous quarters, however, and the issues have not been fully resolved.

Palmer expressed disappointment with the company, specifying, “Insofar as the company has devoted significant effort and incurred considerable expense toward achieving compliance, we were surprised when CEO Damian Kozlowski during the company’s 3Q16 conference call on October 28 said that he had created a new plan focused on resolving issues, indicating that it was not as close to resolution as we had believed.”

Overall, “We believe that in light of TBBK’s outstanding issues and uncertainty regarding the timing of their resolution such a discount is merited and that its shares are fairly valued,” the analyst concludes.

According to TipRanks, which measures analysts’ and bloggers’ success rate based on how their calls perform, four-star analyst Mark Palmer is ranked #394 out of 4,369 analysts. Palmer has a 56% success rate and earns 5.4% in his annual returns. When suggesting TBBK, this analyst gains 12.8% in average profits on the stock.

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