Park Sterling Corp. (NASDAQ:PSTB) saw strong trading volume on Thursday . 327,194 shares traded hands during mid-day trading, an increase of 17% from the previous session’s volume of 279,605 shares.The stock last traded at $7.46 and had previously closed at $7.44.

PSTB has been the topic of a number of research analyst reports. Zacks Investment Research raised shares of Park Sterling Corp. from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $8.25 price objective on the stock in a research report on Wednesday, May 4th. Hovde Group boosted their price objective on shares of Park Sterling Corp. from $7.25 to $8.25 and gave the company an “outperform” rating in a research report on Monday, May 2nd. Finally, Stephens raised shares of Park Sterling Corp. from an “equal weight” rating to an “overweight” rating in a research report on Tuesday, July 5th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a hold rating and four have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $8.00.

The stock’s 50-day moving average price is $7.24 and its 200 day moving average price is $6.96. The company has a market cap of $389.80 million and a price-to-earnings ratio of 23.02.

Park Sterling Corp. (NASDAQ:PSTB) last posted its earnings results on Thursday, April 28th. The company reported $0.12 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.08 by $0.04. The company earned $31.33 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $25.17 million. During the same quarter last year, the firm earned $0.11 EPS. Park Sterling Corp.’s revenue for the quarter was up 25.7% on a year-over-year basis. On average, analysts predict that Park Sterling Corp. will post $0.49 earnings per share for the current year.

Several large investors have modified their holdings of the company. Boston Partners raised its stake in shares of Park Sterling Corp. by 3.2% in the fourth quarter. Boston Partners now owns 155,978 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,142,000 after buying an additional 4,781 shares during the last quarter. Wells Fargo & Company MN raised its stake in shares of Park Sterling Corp. by 3.1% in the fourth quarter. Wells Fargo & Company MN now owns 1,140,255 shares of the company’s stock worth $8,346,000 after buying an additional 34,413 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Dimensional Fund Advisors LP raised its stake in shares of Park Sterling Corp. by 2.1% in the fourth quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 2,374,970 shares of the company’s stock worth $17,385,000 after buying an additional 48,532 shares during the last quarter.

Park Sterling Corporation is a holding company for Park Sterling Bank (the Bank). The Bank is a North Carolina-chartered commercial nonmember bank. The Company provides banking services to small and mid-sized businesses, real estate owners, residential builders, institutions, professionals and consumers doing business or residing within its target markets.

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