Regional bank stock plunge creating key entry point for investors, top analyst says

Regional bank weakness is a 'solvable problem,' says Janney's Christopher Marinac

The dramatic drop in regional bank stocks is a key entry point for investors, according to analyst Christopher Marinac.

Marinac, who serves as Director of Research at Janney Montgomery Scott, believes the group’s decline over the past week provides an attractive entry point for investors because underlying business fundamentals remain intact.

“We have definitely slipped on a banana peel as it pertains to this deposit worry and scare,” Marinac told CNBC’s “Fast Money” on Monday.

The SPDR S&P Regional Banking ETF dropped by more than 12% on Monday after regulators shuttered Silicon Valley Bank and Signature Bank. They’re the second- and third-largest bank failures, respectively, in U.S. history.

“The main lending in America is still mid-size and small community banks,” he added. “Those companies are excellent plays.”

When asked which regional banks look most attractive, Marinac recommends Fifth Third Bank. The stock is off more than 27% over the past week.

“They’re a very innovative company in the fintech arena, which still has merit as we go forward,” he said, adding that CEO Timothy Spence has an “excellent” handle on interest rate risk and credit.

Marinac also named Truist as a top sector pick, saying the company has a competitive advantage among regional banks after selling a portion of its insurance unit. Truist stock has dropped 30% over the past five sessions.

“That’s going to help them pass the stress test in June, so that company certainly is not only a survivor, but a thriver,” he said.

On the longer-term outlook for regionals, Marinac expects the group to pare its losses.

“Eventually, the storm will calm and the seas will part such that banks can go back to trading at book value and higher as we go forward,” Marinac said.