Janney Montgomery Scott LLC Purchases 635 Shares of First Financial Bancorp. (FFBC)

Janney Montgomery Scott LLC boosted its position in shares of First Financial Bancorp. (NASDAQ:FFBC) by 3.8% during the second quarter, according to its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The firm owned 17,493 shares of the bank’s stock after buying an additional 635 shares during the period. Janney Montgomery Scott LLC’s holdings in First Financial Bancorp. were worth $485,000 as of its most recent SEC filing.

Several other hedge funds have also recently made changes to their positions in the stock. Municipal Employees Retirement System of Michigan raised its stake in shares of First Financial Bancorp. by 4.0% in the second quarter. Municipal Employees Retirement System of Michigan now owns 14,640 shares of the bank’s stock worth $406,000 after buying an additional 560 shares during the last quarter. Russell Investments Group Ltd. raised its stake in shares of First Financial Bancorp. by 12.0% in the second quarter. Russell Investments Group Ltd. now owns 47,161 shares of the bank’s stock worth $1,306,000 after buying an additional 5,048 shares during the last quarter. US Bancorp DE raised its stake in shares of First Financial Bancorp. by 1.3% in the second quarter. US Bancorp DE now owns 248,350 shares of the bank’s stock worth $6,880,000 after buying an additional 3,112 shares during the last quarter. Aperio Group LLC raised its stake in shares of First Financial Bancorp. by 0.5% in the second quarter. Aperio Group LLC now owns 25,443 shares of the bank’s stock worth $705,000 after buying an additional 125 shares during the last quarter. Finally, State of Alaska Department of Revenue raised its stake in shares of First Financial Bancorp. by 79.4% in the second quarter. State of Alaska Department of Revenue now owns 12,269 shares of the bank’s stock worth $339,000 after buying an additional 5,429 shares during the last quarter. 74.31% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

First Financial Bancorp. (NASDAQ:FFBC) opened at 23.85 on Friday. The stock’s 50 day moving average price is $26.55 and its 200-day moving average price is $27.05. First Financial Bancorp. has a 12 month low of $20.55 and a 12 month high of $29.80. The company has a market capitalization of $1.48 billion, a P/E ratio of 15.79 and a beta of 1.18.

First Financial Bancorp. (NASDAQ:FFBC) last issued its earnings results on Tuesday, July 25th. The bank reported $0.37 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $0.38 by $0.01. The company had revenue of $85.97 million for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $89.52 million. First Financial Bancorp. had a net margin of 24.28% and a return on equity of 10.65%. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company earned $0.36 earnings per share. On average, equities research analysts predict that First Financial Bancorp. will post $1.52 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, October 2nd. Investors of record on Friday, September 1st will be issued a dividend of $0.17 per share. This represents a $0.68 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.85%. The ex-dividend date is Wednesday, August 30th. First Financial Bancorp.’s dividend payout ratio is presently 45.03%.

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A number of analysts have recently commented on the company. BidaskClub lowered First Financial Bancorp. from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Friday, July 28th. Sandler O’Neill raised First Financial Bancorp. from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and lifted their price target for the company from $28.00 to $29.00 in a research note on Friday, July 28th. Barclays PLC cut their price target on First Financial Bancorp. from $27.00 to $25.00 and set an “underweight” rating on the stock in a research note on Thursday, July 27th. Piper Jaffray Companies set a $28.00 price target on First Financial Bancorp. and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research note on Tuesday, July 25th. Finally, Stephens raised First Financial Bancorp. from an “equal weight” rating to an “overweight” rating and set a $31.00 price target on the stock in a research note on Wednesday, July 26th. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, five have issued a hold rating and four have given a buy rating to the company. The stock currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $28.63.

In related news, insider C Douglas Lefferson sold 40,000 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, August 1st. The stock was sold at an average price of $25.69, for a total transaction of $1,027,600.00. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now directly owns 74,170 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,905,427.30. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this hyperlink. Corporate insiders own 1.88% of the company’s stock.

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.

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

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