First Niagara Financial Group (Nasdaq: FNFG) only managed to meet estimates last quarter, but investors hope it will surpass expectations this quarter. The company will unveil its latest earnings on Thursday. First Niagara Financial Group provides retail and commercial banking as well as other financial services through its wholly owned, federally chartered savings bank subsidiary, First Niagara Bank.

What analysts say

  • Buy, sell, or hold?: Analysts generally think investors should hang on to First Niagara Financial Group, with half rating the stock a hold. Analysts like First Niagara Financial Group better than competitor Hudson City Bancorp overall. Zero out of 16 analysts rate Hudson City Bancorp a buy compared to five of 10 for First Niagara Financial Group. Analysts still rate the stock a hold, but they are a bit more wary about it compared to three months ago.
  • Revenue forecasts: On average, analysts predict $293.9 million in revenue this quarter. That would represent a rise of 46.3% from the year-ago quarter.
  • Wall Street earnings expectations: The average analyst estimate is earnings of $0.24 per share. Estimates range from $0.18 to $0.25.

What our community says
CAPS All-Stars are solidly backing the stock with 87.5% assigning it an outperform rating. The community at large backs the All-Stars with 88.6% awarding it a rating of outperform. Fools are gung-ho about First Niagara Financial Group, though the message boards have been quiet lately with only 60 posts in the past 30 days. Despite the majority sentiment in favor of First Niagara Financial Group, the stock has a middling CAPS rating of three out of five stars.

First Niagara Financial Group's profit has risen year over year by an average of more than twofold.

Now let's look at how efficient management is at running the business. Traditionally, margins represent the efficiency with which companies capture portions of sales dollars. The following table shows net margins over the past four quarters.






Net Margin





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