1ST COLONIAL BA/SH SH (OTCMKTS:FCOB) and Meridian Bancorp (NASDAQ:EBSB) are both small-cap finance companies, but which is the better investment? We will compare the two businesses based on the strength of their institutional ownership, dividends, valuation, risk, profitability, earnings and analyst recommendations.


This table compares 1ST COLONIAL BA/SH SH and Meridian Bancorp’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
1ST COLONIAL BA/SH SH 11.95% 6.98% 0.59%
Meridian Bancorp 23.98% 9.50% 1.06%

Institutional and Insider Ownership

18.4% of 1ST COLONIAL BA/SH SH shares are owned by institutional investors. Comparatively, 67.7% of Meridian Bancorp shares are owned by institutional investors. 4.8% of Meridian Bancorp shares are owned by company insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that hedge funds, large money managers and endowments believe a stock will outperform the market over the long term.

Analyst Recommendations

This is a breakdown of current ratings for 1ST COLONIAL BA/SH SH and Meridian Bancorp, as provided by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Meridian Bancorp 0 0 2 0 3.00

Meridian Bancorp has a consensus target price of $21.00, indicating a potential upside of 77.82%. Given Meridian Bancorp’s higher probable upside, analysts plainly believe Meridian Bancorp is more favorable than 1ST COLONIAL BA/SH SH.

Volatility and Risk

1ST COLONIAL BA/SH SH has a beta of 0.44, meaning that its share price is 56% less volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Meridian Bancorp has a beta of 0.63, meaning that its share price is 37% less volatile than the S&P 500.

Earnings & Valuation

This table compares 1ST COLONIAL BA/SH SH and Meridian Bancorp’s revenue, earnings per share and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio Net Income Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
1ST COLONIAL BA/SH SH $26.98 million 0.96 $3.22 million N/A N/A
Meridian Bancorp $279.42 million 2.23 $67.00 million $1.30 9.08

Meridian Bancorp has higher revenue and earnings than 1ST COLONIAL BA/SH SH.


Meridian Bancorp beats 1ST COLONIAL BA/SH SH on 12 of the 12 factors compared between the two stocks.


1st Colonial Bancorp, Inc. operates as the bank holding company for 1st Colonial Community Bank that provides a range of business and consumer financial services in New Jersey. The company offers various deposit products, including statement savings accounts, money market accounts, certificates of deposit, club accounts, interest on lawyers trust accounts fund accounts, and business and personal checking accounts. It also provides home equity loans, home equity lines of credit, car loans, personal loans, residential and commercial mortgages, construction loans, lines of credit, equipment and vehicle financing, and other loans; and SBA loans for various general business purposes, including working capital, machinery and equipment, furniture and fixtures, land and building, leasehold improvements, and debt refinancing. In addition, the company offers a range of merchant services comprising card services, night depository, bulk cash processing, coin and currency ordering, and other services; VISA CheckCards; wire transfers, safe deposit boxes, and other additional services; and online banking, mobile banking, telephone banking, government banking, and ATM services. It operates two branch offices located in Collingswood and Westville, New Jersey. 1st Colonial Bancorp, Inc. was founded in 2000 and is headquartered in Collingswood, New Jersey.

About Meridian Bancorp

Meridian Bancorp, Inc. operates as the holding company for East Boston Savings Bank that provides various financial products and services for individuals and businesses primarily in Suffolk, Norfolk, Middlesex and Essex Counties, Massachusetts. The company accepts various deposit products, including non-interest-bearing demand deposits, such as checking accounts; interest-bearing demand accounts comprising NOW and money market accounts; savings accounts; and certificates of deposits, as well as commercial checking accounts. Its loan portfolio includes commercial real estate loans, which are secured by properties used for business purposes, such as office buildings, industrial facilities, and retail facilities; one- to four-family residential loans comprising mortgage loans that enable borrowers to purchase or refinance existing homes; multi-family real estate loans; construction loans; commercial and industrial loans; home equity lines of credit; and consumer loans that include automobile loans, loans secured by savings or certificate accounts, credit builders, and annuity and overdraft loans. In addition, the company offers non-deposit financial products, which comprise mutual funds, annuities, stocks, and bonds through a third-party broker-dealer; and long-term care insurance products. Further, it is also involved in the securities transactions business; and holding foreclosed real estate properties. The company operates 37 full-service locations, as well as 1 mobile branch and 3 loan centers. Meridian Bancorp, Inc. was founded in 1848 and is headquartered in Peabody, Massachusetts.

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