If you’re interested in Lakeland Bancorp, Inc. (NASDAQ:LBAI), then you might want to consider its beta (a measure of share price volatility) in order to understand how the stock could impact your portfolio. Modern finance theory considers volatility to be a measure of risk, and there are two main types of price volatility. The first type is company specific volatility. Investors use diversification across uncorrelated stocks to reduce this kind of price volatility across the portfolio. The second type is the broader market volatility, which you cannot diversify away, since it arises from macroeconomic factors which directly affects all the stocks on the market.
Some stocks see their prices move in concert with the market. Others tend towards stronger, gentler or unrelated price movements. Beta is a widely used metric to measure a stock’s exposure to market risk (volatility). Before we go on, it’s worth noting that Warren Buffett pointed out in his 2014 letter to shareholders that ‘volatility is far from synonymous with risk.’ Having said that, beta can still be rather useful. The first thing to understand about beta is that the beta of the overall market is one. Any stock with a beta of greater than one is considered more volatile than the market, while those with a beta below one are either less volatile or poorly correlated with the market.
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What LBAI’s beta value tells investors
Looking at the last five years, Lakeland Bancorp has a beta of 0.88. The fact that this is well below 1 indicates that its share price movements haven’t historically been very sensitive to overall market volatility. This means that — if history is a guide — buying the stock would reduce the impact of overall market volatility in many portfolios (depending on the beta of the portfolio, of course). Beta is worth considering, but it’s also important to consider whether Lakeland Bancorp is growing earnings and revenue. You can take a look for yourself, below.
Could LBAI’s size cause it to be more volatile?
Lakeland Bancorp is a small company, but not tiny and little known. It has a market capitalisation of US$811m, which means it would be on the radar of intstitutional investors. Small cap stocks ofthen have a higher beta than the overall market. However, small companies can also be strongly impacted by company specific developments, which can move the share price in ways that are unrelated to the broader market. That could explain why this one has a low beta value.
What this means for you:
Since Lakeland Bancorp is not heavily influenced by market moves, its share price is probably far more dependend on company specific developments. It could pay to take a closer look at metrics such as revenue growth, earnings growth, and debt. In order to fully understand whether LBAI is a good investment for you, we also need to consider important company-specific fundamentals such as Lakeland Bancorp’s financial health and performance track record. I highly recommend you dive deeper by considering the following:
- Future Outlook: What are well-informed industry analysts predicting for LBAI’s future growth? Take a look at our free research report of analyst consensus for LBAI’s outlook.
- Past Track Record: Has LBAI been consistently performing well irrespective of the ups and downs in the market? Go into more detail in the past performance analysis and take a look at the free visual representations of LBAI’s historicals for more clarity.
- Other Interesting Stocks: It’s worth checking to see how LBAI measures up against other companies on valuation. You could start with this free list of prospective options.
We aim to bring you long-term focused research analysis driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements or qualitative material.
If you spot an error that warrants correction, please contact the editor at firstname.lastname@example.org. This article by Simply Wall St is general in nature. It does not constitute a recommendation to buy or sell any stock, and does not take account of your objectives, or your financial situation. Simply Wall St has no position in the stocks mentioned. Thank you for reading.