First Choice Bancorp (NASDAQ:FCBP) Sees Large Decline in Short Interest

First Choice Bancorp (NASDAQ:FCBP) was the target of a large decline in short interest during the month of July. As of July 31st, there was short interest totalling 59,800 shares, a decline of 24.7% from the June 30th total of 79,400 shares. Currently, 0.6% of the company’s stock are sold short. Based on an average daily trading volume, of 17,400 shares, the days-to-cover ratio is currently 3.4 days.

In other news, Chairman Peter Hui purchased 6,949 shares of First Choice Bancorp stock in a transaction dated Thursday, May 23rd. The stock was acquired at an average cost of $21.70 per share, for a total transaction of $150,793.30. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available through this hyperlink. Also, Vice Chairman Phillip Thong purchased 7,210 shares of First Choice Bancorp stock in a transaction dated Monday, August 12th. The shares were purchased at an average price of $21.24 per share, with a total value of $153,140.40. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. Over the last quarter, insiders have bought 22,999 shares of company stock valued at $492,342. 15.14% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

A number of hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. BlackRock Inc. boosted its stake in First Choice Bancorp by 3.7% in the fourth quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 446,587 shares of the company’s stock worth $10,093,000 after purchasing an additional 16,061 shares in the last quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp raised its position in shares of First Choice Bancorp by 86.4% during the fourth quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp now owns 49,184 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,111,000 after acquiring an additional 22,795 shares during the last quarter. Northern Trust Corp raised its position in shares of First Choice Bancorp by 12.3% during the fourth quarter. Northern Trust Corp now owns 86,272 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,949,000 after acquiring an additional 9,474 shares during the last quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP raised its position in shares of First Choice Bancorp by 158.3% during the fourth quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 39,071 shares of the company’s stock worth $883,000 after acquiring an additional 23,946 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Geode Capital Management LLC increased its holdings in First Choice Bancorp by 9.4% in the fourth quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC now owns 72,822 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,645,000 after purchasing an additional 6,259 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 28.15% of the company’s stock.

Shares of NASDAQ:FCBP traded up $0.19 during trading on Monday, hitting $21.31. 18,130 shares of the stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 21,703. First Choice Bancorp has a 1-year low of $18.57 and a 1-year high of $28.30. The company has a fifty day moving average price of $22.22. The company has a current ratio of 1.08, a quick ratio of 1.07 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.06.

First Choice Bancorp (NASDAQ:FCBP) last released its earnings results on Tuesday, July 23rd. The company reported $0.58 earnings per share for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.54 by $0.04. The company had revenue of $21.16 million during the quarter. First Choice Bancorp had a return on equity of 10.48% and a net margin of 25.42%.

The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, August 29th. Investors of record on Thursday, August 15th will be issued a $0.20 dividend. The ex-dividend date is Wednesday, August 14th. This represents a $0.80 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 3.75%.

Separately, ValuEngine downgraded First Choice Bancorp from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Thursday, June 13th.

About First Choice Bancorp

First Choice Bancorp operates as the bank holding company for First Choice Bank that provides retail, personal, and commercial banking products and services to individuals, families, and small and medium-sized businesses. It offers interest and noninterest-bearing demand deposit, money market and savings accounts, remote deposit products, and time certificates of deposit; and loan products, such as construction and land development, residential real estate, commercial real estate, commercial and industrial, and small business administration (SBA) and consumer loans, as well as startup funds to entrepreneurs.

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