Boston Partners Invests $21.12 Million in First Merchants Corporation (FRME)

Boston Partners purchased a new stake in shares of First Merchants Corporation (NASDAQ:FRME) during the 3rd quarter, according to its most recent filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission. The institutional investor purchased 491,959 shares of the bank’s stock, valued at approximately $21,120,000. Boston Partners owned 1.00% of First Merchants Corporation as of its most recent SEC filing.

Several other institutional investors and hedge funds also recently made changes to their positions in the company. Alps Advisors Inc. boosted its stake in shares of First Merchants Corporation by 0.3% during the second quarter. Alps Advisors Inc. now owns 12,013 shares of the bank’s stock valued at $482,000 after purchasing an additional 31 shares during the period. Bronfman E.L. Rothschild L.P. raised its holdings in shares of First Merchants Corporation by 1.7% during the second quarter. Bronfman E.L. Rothschild L.P. now owns 3,029 shares of the bank’s stock valued at $122,000 after acquiring an additional 50 shares in the last quarter. Amalgamated Bank raised its holdings in shares of First Merchants Corporation by 1.1% during the second quarter. Amalgamated Bank now owns 5,181 shares of the bank’s stock valued at $208,000 after acquiring an additional 58 shares in the last quarter. Suntrust Banks Inc. raised its holdings in shares of First Merchants Corporation by 1.6% during the second quarter. Suntrust Banks Inc. now owns 6,610 shares of the bank’s stock valued at $265,000 after acquiring an additional 101 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Advisor Group Inc. raised its holdings in shares of First Merchants Corporation by 8.3% during the second quarter. Advisor Group Inc. now owns 2,981 shares of the bank’s stock valued at $120,000 after acquiring an additional 228 shares in the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 68.15% of the company’s stock.

A number of equities analysts recently commented on FRME shares. Zacks Investment Research upgraded First Merchants Corporation from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $49.00 target price for the company in a report on Monday, October 30th. Keefe, Bruyette & Woods restated a “buy” rating and set a $47.00 target price on shares of First Merchants Corporation in a report on Sunday, October 29th. Piper Jaffray Companies reiterated a “hold” rating on shares of First Merchants Corporation in a report on Thursday, August 3rd. Finally, BidaskClub downgraded First Merchants Corporation from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Thursday, July 27th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, two have given a hold rating and two have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $47.33.

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First Merchants Corporation (NASDAQ FRME) opened at $40.67 on Tuesday. The company has a quick ratio of 0.92, a current ratio of 0.92 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.43. The stock has a market capitalization of $1,981.44, a price-to-earnings ratio of 17.61, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 2.50 and a beta of 0.92. First Merchants Corporation has a twelve month low of $31.37 and a twelve month high of $44.36.

First Merchants Corporation (NASDAQ:FRME) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, October 26th. The bank reported $0.50 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.55 by ($0.05). First Merchants Corporation had a return on equity of 10.38% and a net margin of 26.28%. The firm had revenue of $93.09 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $97.45 million. equities analysts forecast that First Merchants Corporation will post 2.3 EPS for the current year.

In other news, insider Mark K. Hardwick sold 4,301 shares of the stock in a transaction on Tuesday, November 7th. The stock was sold at an average price of $42.61, for a total value of $183,265.61. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available through this link. Over the last three months, insiders bought 66 shares of company stock worth $2,681. Insiders own 1.41% of the company’s stock.

About First Merchants Corporation

First Merchants Corporation is a financial holding company. The Company has a bank charter, First Merchants Bank (the Bank), which is opened for business in Muncie, Indiana. It operates through community banking business segment. The Bank also operates Lafayette Bank and Trust, and First Merchants Private Wealth Advisors (each as a division of First Merchants Bank).

Institutional Ownership by Quarter for First Merchants Corporation (NASDAQ:FRME)

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