PNC Financial Services Group Inc. lessened its stake in shares of First Merchants Co. (NASDAQ:FRME) by 9.0% in the 2nd quarter, according to its most recent disclosure with the SEC. The institutional investor owned 10,424 shares of the bank’s stock after selling 1,025 shares during the period. PNC Financial Services Group Inc.’s holdings in First Merchants were worth $434,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.
A number of other hedge funds have also modified their holdings of FRME. Cullen Frost Bankers Inc. purchased a new position in First Merchants during the second quarter valued at approximately $26,000. Berman Capital Advisors LLC purchased a new position in First Merchants during the first quarter valued at approximately $28,000. Amundi Pioneer Asset Management Inc. purchased a new position in First Merchants during the first quarter valued at approximately $151,000. Amalgamated Bank purchased a new position in First Merchants during the first quarter valued at approximately $202,000. Finally, Intrust Bank NA purchased a new position in First Merchants during the first quarter valued at approximately $209,000. 73.89% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.
Several equities analysts recently issued reports on FRME shares. Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of First Merchants from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Friday, August 13th. Janney Montgomery Scott raised shares of First Merchants from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $48.00 price target on the stock in a report on Thursday, July 29th. Finally, Raymond James cut their price target on shares of First Merchants from $55.00 to $47.00 and set an “outperform” rating on the stock in a report on Wednesday, July 28th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a hold rating and four have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. According to data from MarketBeat.com, the company currently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $41.20.
First Merchants (NASDAQ:FRME) last posted its earnings results on Sunday, July 25th. The bank reported $1.03 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.92 by $0.11. The company had revenue of $135.15 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $131.17 million. First Merchants had a net margin of 33.81% and a return on equity of 10.09%. Research analysts expect that First Merchants Co. will post 3.78 earnings per share for the current year.
The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, September 17th. Investors of record on Friday, September 3rd will be given a dividend of $0.29 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, September 2nd. This represents a $1.16 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 2.97%. First Merchants’s dividend payout ratio is presently 42.34%.
First Merchants Company Profile
First Merchants Corp. (Indiana) is a holding company, which engages in the provision of financial services. It also offers personal banking, business banking, mortgage lending, treasury management services, and wealth management. The company was founded in September 1982 and is headquartered in Muncie, IN.
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