Peoples Bancorp of North Carolina (NASDAQ:PEBK) and VSB Bancorp (OTCMKTS:VSBN) are both small-cap finance companies, but which is the better stock? We will contrast the two companies based on the strength of their dividends, institutional ownership, risk, earnings, profitability, valuation and analyst recommendations.

Dividends

Peoples Bancorp of North Carolina pays an annual dividend of $0.60 per share and has a dividend yield of 3.6%. VSB Bancorp pays an annual dividend of $0.60 per share and has a dividend yield of 3.0%. Peoples Bancorp of North Carolina has raised its dividend for 1 consecutive years. Peoples Bancorp of North Carolina is clearly the better dividend stock, given its higher yield and longer track record of dividend growth.

Institutional & Insider Ownership

27.0% of Peoples Bancorp of North Carolina shares are owned by institutional investors. 11.3% of Peoples Bancorp of North Carolina shares are owned by company insiders. Comparatively, 30.0% of VSB Bancorp shares are owned by company insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that large money managers, endowments and hedge funds believe a company will outperform the market over the long term.

Analyst Ratings

This is a summary of recent ratings and recommmendations for Peoples Bancorp of North Carolina and VSB Bancorp, as provided by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Peoples Bancorp of North Carolina 0 0 0 0 N/A
VSB Bancorp 0 0 0 0 N/A

Profitability

This table compares Peoples Bancorp of North Carolina and VSB Bancorp’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Peoples Bancorp of North Carolina 16.93% 8.57% 0.91%
VSB Bancorp 19.82% 8.60% 0.88%

Valuation and Earnings

This table compares Peoples Bancorp of North Carolina and VSB Bancorp’s revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio Net Income Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Peoples Bancorp of North Carolina $67.34 million 1.45 $14.07 million N/A N/A
VSB Bancorp $16.57 million 2.31 $3.41 million N/A N/A

Peoples Bancorp of North Carolina has higher revenue and earnings than VSB Bancorp.

Volatility & Risk

Peoples Bancorp of North Carolina has a beta of 0.63, suggesting that its stock price is 37% less volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, VSB Bancorp has a beta of 0.87, suggesting that its stock price is 13% less volatile than the S&P 500.

About Peoples Bancorp of North Carolina

Peoples Bancorp of North Carolina, Inc. operates as a bank holding company for Peoples Bank that provides various banking products and services to individuals and small to medium-sized businesses. It offers various deposit products. The company's loan products comprise commercial real estate, commercial, construction and land development, single-family residential, residential mortgage, individual taxpayer identification number mortgage loans, as well as agricultural loans. It also provides investment counseling and non-deposit investment products, such as stocks, bonds, mutual funds, tax deferred annuities, and related brokerage services; and real estate appraisal and brokerage services. In addition, the company operates as a clearing-house for the provision of appraisal services for community banks; and acquires, manages, and disposes real property, other collateral, and other assets obtained in the ordinary course of collecting debts. As of December 31, 2018, it operated 20 banking offices located in Lincolnton, Newton, Denver, Catawba, Conover, Maiden, Claremont, Hiddenite, Hickory, Charlotte, Cornelius, Mooresville, Raleigh, and Cary in North Carolina. The company also operates loan production offices in Denver and Durham, North Carolina. Peoples Bancorp of North Carolina, Inc. was founded in 1912 and is headquartered in Newton, North Carolina.

About VSB Bancorp

VSB Bancorp, Inc. operates as the holding company for Victory State Bank that provides commercial and retail banking products and services primarily in Staten Island, New York. It accepts various deposits from individuals and businesses; grants loans; and invests funds primarily in government securities, mortgage backed securities, and collateralized mortgage obligations, as well as provides Internet banking services. The operates five full service located in Great Kills, Forest Avenue, Hyatt Street, Hylan Boulevard, and Bay Street, Staten Island. VSB Bancorp, Inc. was founded in 1997 and is based in Staten Island, New York.

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