Reviewing Alerus Financial (NASDAQ:ALRS) & Hope Bancorp (NASDAQ:HOPE)

Alerus Financial (NASDAQ:ALRSGet Rating) and Hope Bancorp (NASDAQ:HOPEGet Rating) are both small-cap finance companies, but which is the superior investment? We will compare the two businesses based on the strength of their institutional ownership, risk, analyst recommendations, dividends, profitability, valuation and earnings.


This table compares Alerus Financial and Hope Bancorp’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Alerus Financial 18.71% 13.16% 1.29%
Hope Bancorp 31.65% 10.76% 1.20%

Risk & Volatility

Alerus Financial has a beta of 0.68, suggesting that its stock price is 32% less volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Hope Bancorp has a beta of 1.21, suggesting that its stock price is 21% more volatile than the S&P 500.

Insider & Institutional Ownership

41.7% of Alerus Financial shares are held by institutional investors. Comparatively, 84.3% of Hope Bancorp shares are held by institutional investors. 6.9% of Alerus Financial shares are held by insiders. Comparatively, 5.1% of Hope Bancorp shares are held by insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that endowments, large money managers and hedge funds believe a stock is poised for long-term growth.

Analyst Ratings

This is a breakdown of recent ratings and price targets for Alerus Financial and Hope Bancorp, as provided by

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Alerus Financial 0 0 1 0 3.00
Hope Bancorp 0 1 0 0 2.00

Alerus Financial currently has a consensus target price of $26.00, suggesting a potential upside of 13.99%. Hope Bancorp has a consensus target price of $15.00, suggesting a potential upside of 15.65%. Given Hope Bancorp’s higher probable upside, analysts plainly believe Hope Bancorp is more favorable than Alerus Financial.

Valuation & Earnings

This table compares Alerus Financial and Hope Bancorp’s top-line revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio Net Income Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Alerus Financial $240.04 million 1.90 $52.68 million $2.28 10.00
Hope Bancorp $610.13 million 2.54 $204.57 million $1.81 7.17

Hope Bancorp has higher revenue and earnings than Alerus Financial. Hope Bancorp is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than Alerus Financial, indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.


Alerus Financial pays an annual dividend of $0.72 per share and has a dividend yield of 3.2%. Hope Bancorp pays an annual dividend of $0.56 per share and has a dividend yield of 4.3%. Alerus Financial pays out 31.6% of its earnings in the form of a dividend. Hope Bancorp pays out 30.9% of its earnings in the form of a dividend. Both companies have healthy payout ratios and should be able to cover their dividend payments with earnings for the next several years. Alerus Financial has raised its dividend for 6 consecutive years. Hope Bancorp is clearly the better dividend stock, given its higher yield and lower payout ratio.


Hope Bancorp beats Alerus Financial on 9 of the 17 factors compared between the two stocks.

About Alerus Financial

(Get Rating)

Alerus Financial Corp. engages in the provision of business and consumer financial products and services through its subsidiary, Alerus Financial NA. It operates through the following segments: Banking, Retirement & Benefit Services, Wealth Management, Mortgage, and Corporate Administration. The Banking segment provides lending and deposit products. The Retirement & Benefit Services segment consists of retirement plan administration and investment advisory services, employee stock ownership plan, fiduciary services, payroll, HSA, and other benefit services. The Wealth Management segment offers fiduciary services to consumer and commercial clients, including financial planning, investment management, personal and corporate trust services, estate administration, and custody services. The Mortgage segment includes first and second mortgage loans through a centralized mortgage unit. The Corporate Administration segment covers indirect overhead allocations and income tax expense. The was company founded in 1879 and is headquartered in Grand Folks, ND.

About Hope Bancorp

(Get Rating)

Hope Bancorp, Inc. operates as the bank holding company for Bank of Hope that provides banking services for small and medium-sized businesses, and individuals in the United States. The company accepts personal and business checking, money market, savings, time deposit, and individual retirement accounts. Its loan products include commercial loans to businesses for various purposes, such as working capital, purchasing inventory, debt refinancing, business acquisitions, and other business related financing needs; real estate loans; small business administration loans; and consumer loans, such as single-family mortgage, home equity, auto, credit card, and personal loans. The company also offers trade finance services, including the issuance and negotiation of letters of credit, as well as handles documentary collections; warehouse lines of credit to mortgage loan originators; and commercial equipment lease financing. In addition, it provides cash management services, such as remote deposit capture, lock box, and ACH origination services; investment and wealth management services; mobile banking services; debit card services; foreign exchanges services, safe deposit boxes, and other customary bank services; internet banking services; and automated teller machine services. As of December 31, 2021, the company operated 47 full-service branches in California, Washington, Texas, Illinois, New York, New Jersey, Virginia, and Alabama; SBA loan production offices in Atlanta, Houston, Dallas, Denver, Portland, Seattle, Fremont, and Southern California; and a representative office in Seoul, Korea. Hope Bancorp, Inc. was incorporated in 2000 and is headquartered in Los Angeles, California.

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