First Financial Bancorp. (NASDAQ:FFBC) had its price objective upped by stock analysts at Barclays PLC from $25.00 to $27.00 in a report issued on Monday. The firm currently has an “underweight” rating on the bank’s stock. Barclays PLC’s price objective points to a potential downside of 1.82% from the company’s previous close.

FFBC has been the topic of several other reports. BidaskClub downgraded First Financial Bancorp. from a “sell” rating to a “strong sell” rating in a report on Tuesday, August 22nd. Zacks Investment Research upgraded First Financial Bancorp. from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Tuesday, October 10th. Royal Bank Of Canada reiterated a “hold” rating and issued a $28.00 price target on shares of First Financial Bancorp. in a report on Friday. Sandler O’Neill upgraded 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, July 28th. Finally, Piper Jaffray Companies set a $28.00 price target on First Financial Bancorp. and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a report on Tuesday, July 25th. Two analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, five have assigned a hold rating and three have assigned a buy rating to the company. First Financial Bancorp. currently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $28.57.

Shares of First Financial Bancorp. (NASDAQ:FFBC) traded down 0.18% during midday trading on Monday, hitting $27.45. The stock had a trading volume of 199,937 shares. The company has a market cap of $1.71 billion, a PE ratio of 18.18 and a beta of 1.20. First Financial Bancorp. has a 52-week low of $20.55 and a 52-week high of $29.80. The company’s 50 day moving average is $25.38 and its 200 day moving average is $26.24.

First Financial Bancorp. (NASDAQ:FFBC) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, October 19th. The bank reported $0.40 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $0.38 by $0.02. First Financial Bancorp. had a return on equity of 11.33% and a net margin of 26.49%. The firm had revenue of $83.95 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $88.30 million. During the same period in the prior year, the business posted $0.37 earnings per share. On average, analysts anticipate that First Financial Bancorp. will post $1.53 earnings per share for the current year.

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In related news, insider C Douglas Lefferson sold 40,000 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, August 1st. The stock was sold at an average price of $25.69, for a total value of $1,027,600.00. Following the transaction, the insider now owns 74,170 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $1,905,427.30. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through the SEC website. In the last three months, insiders purchased 801 shares of company stock worth $20,054. 1.88% of the stock is owned by insiders.

Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the business. Ameritas Investment Partners Inc. boosted its position in First Financial Bancorp. by 6.9% during the 2nd quarter. Ameritas Investment Partners Inc. now owns 5,410 shares of the bank’s stock valued at $150,000 after acquiring an additional 349 shares in the last quarter. SG Americas Securities LLC boosted its position in First Financial Bancorp. by 16.6% during the 1st quarter. SG Americas Securities LLC now owns 6,492 shares of the bank’s stock valued at $178,000 after acquiring an additional 922 shares in the last quarter. IFP Advisors Inc boosted its position in First Financial Bancorp. by 0.6% during the 2nd quarter. IFP Advisors Inc now owns 6,542 shares of the bank’s stock valued at $181,000 after acquiring an additional 36 shares in the last quarter. Amalgamated Bank boosted its position in First Financial Bancorp. by 1.2% during the 2nd quarter. Amalgamated Bank now owns 8,406 shares of the bank’s stock valued at $233,000 after acquiring an additional 102 shares in the last quarter. Finally, GW&K Investment Management LLC bought a new stake in First Financial Bancorp. during the 2nd quarter valued at $261,000. 74.23% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

First Financial Bancorp. Company Profile

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.

Analyst Recommendations for First Financial Bancorp. (NASDAQ:FFBC)

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