PBBank vs Affin – which has better catalyst?

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If you are looking for performance among the Bursa banks, then of course you would chose PBBank as it had the better ROE trends. You can see from the chart that Affin has the worse ROE trend.

[Image: PBB-vs-Affin.png]

But if you are looking to make money, shouldn’t the focus be on companies trading at a discount to its value with some catalyst? The asset value or book value of banks is a good indication of their business value as most of the assets are marked to market prices. So PBV can give a picture of whether a bank is over or underpriced.

In this context, PBBank has a PBV greater than 1 whereas Affin is trading below its book value. Affin has been in the news lately about the Sarawak State government planning to increase its stake in the bank. This can be catalyst for re-rating if the purchase goes through.

On the other hand, PBBank no longer has its founder Chairman. Will its historical performance that is probably due to its corporate culture be sustained? More importantly, where is the catalyst for re-rating?

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