Why We're Buying IberiaBank

The video below is part of The Motley Fool's "11 O'Clock Stock" series where we're recommending a new stock every weekday at 11 a.m. ET on Fool.com for 50 weekdays. To see a video of co-founder Tom Gardner explaining the series, click here. To see our original recommendation of IberiaBank (Nasdaq: IBKC  ) , click here

So far this year, the FDIC has closed 109 failed banks, and they've been closing at a faster pace than in 2009. The good news is: Crises present opportunities. Motley Fool Pro analyst Todd Wenning believes that Louisiana-based IberiaBank should come out of the current crisis a stronger bank. To see his thoughts on the bank click on the video and then read on below.

Wenning says IberiaBank avoided the subprime mess that got many regional competitors in hot water and maintained conservative lending standards. That may have hurt IberiaBank during the housing boom years, but today the bank has the financial might to gobble up some of those failed competitors. In fact, IberiaBank recently completed its fifth FDIC-assisted bank acquisition and received some loan-loss protection from the FDIC in case some of the loans it purchased fail. It's really a win-win for Iberia; it expands its geographic footprint with limited risk.

Better yet, Iberia has some of the highest capital ratios in the industry and has $1 billion of cash on its books. Its Tier 1 Capital Ratio -- a measure of financial strength -- is around 20% compared to larger banks like Bank of America (NYSE: BAC  ) and Wells Fargo (NYSE: WFC  ) , whose ratios stand around 10%. Non-performing assets were less than 1% of total assets over the past 12 months. All in all, Wenning believes it's one of the stronger banks out there.

Fool analyst Todd Wenning does not own shares of any company mentioned. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.


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