Park National Corp OH Decreases Stake in First Financial Bancorp. (FFBC)

Park National Corp OH reduced its position in First Financial Bancorp. (NASDAQ:FFBC) by 22.4% during the second quarter, according to its most recent 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The institutional investor owned 8,684 shares of the bank’s stock after selling 2,500 shares during the period. Park National Corp OH’s holdings in First Financial Bancorp. were worth $241,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.

Other hedge funds and other institutional investors have also recently modified their holdings of the company. Russell Investments Group Ltd. bought a new stake in First Financial Bancorp. during the fourth quarter valued at $1,193,000. Comerica Bank raised its stake in shares of First Financial Bancorp. by 5.3% in the fourth quarter. Comerica Bank now owns 67,461 shares of the bank’s stock worth $1,892,000 after buying an additional 3,376 shares during the period. State Street Corp raised its stake in shares of First Financial Bancorp. by 19.4% in the fourth quarter. State Street Corp now owns 1,691,898 shares of the bank’s stock worth $48,138,000 after buying an additional 274,415 shares during the period. Renaissance Technologies LLC raised its stake in shares of First Financial Bancorp. by 5.4% in the fourth quarter. Renaissance Technologies LLC now owns 347,800 shares of the bank’s stock worth $9,895,000 after buying an additional 17,800 shares during the period. Finally, Guggenheim Capital LLC acquired a new stake in shares of First Financial Bancorp. during the fourth quarter worth approximately $667,000. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 74.39% of the company’s stock.

Shares of First Financial Bancorp. (NASDAQ FFBC) traded up 2.37% during trading on Friday, hitting $25.95. The stock had a trading volume of 678,662 shares. First Financial Bancorp. has a 12 month low of $20.55 and a 12 month high of $29.80. The company has a market cap of $1.61 billion, a P/E ratio of 17.19 and a beta of 1.20. The stock has a 50-day moving average price of $27.45 and a 200 day moving average price of $27.34.

First Financial Bancorp. (NASDAQ:FFBC) last posted its earnings results on Tuesday, July 25th. The bank reported $0.37 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.38 by $0.01. First Financial Bancorp. had a net margin of 24.28% and a return on equity of 10.65%. The firm had revenue of $85.97 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $89.52 million. During the same period in the previous year, the firm posted $0.36 earnings per share. Equities analysts expect that First Financial Bancorp. will post $1.54 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, October 2nd. Stockholders of record on Friday, September 1st will be issued a $0.17 dividend. This represents a $0.68 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 2.62%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Wednesday, August 30th. First Financial Bancorp.’s payout ratio is currently 45.03%.

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Several research firms have recently issued reports on FFBC. BidaskClub lowered shares of First Financial Bancorp. from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Wednesday, June 21st. Stephens raised shares of First Financial Bancorp. from an “equal weight” rating to an “overweight” rating and set a $31.00 price target on the stock in a report on Wednesday. ValuEngine raised shares of First Financial Bancorp. from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a report on Wednesday, May 31st. Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of First Financial Bancorp. from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Monday, May 15th. Finally, Sandler O’Neill raised shares of First Financial Bancorp. from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and increased their price target for the stock from $28.00 to $29.00 in a report on Friday. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, five have assigned a hold rating and four have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company presently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $28.63.

In other news, insider Paul C. Silva sold 1,713 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, May 9th. The stock was sold at an average price of $27.66, for a total value of $47,381.58. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now directly owns 2,051 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $56,730.66. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through the SEC website. 1.88% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

About First Financial Bancorp.

First Financial Bancorp. (First Financial) is a regional bank holding company. First Financial is engaged in the business of commercial banking and other banking and banking-related activities through its subsidiary, First Financial Bank, National Association (the Bank). The range of banking services provided by First Financial to individuals and businesses include commercial lending, real estate lending and consumer financing.

Institutional Ownership by Quarter for First Financial Bancorp. (NASDAQ:FFBC)

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