Zacks Investment Research cut shares of Southern First Bancshares Inc. (NASDAQ:SFST) from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research note released on Tuesday.

According to Zacks, “Greenville First Bancshares, Inc. is the holding company for Greenville First Bank, N.A., a national banking association chartered under the laws of the United States. “

Separately, Keefe, Bruyette & Woods raised their price target on shares of Southern First Bancshares from $28.00 to $30.00 and gave the company an outperform rating in a research note on Wednesday, July 27th.

Shares of Southern First Bancshares (NASDAQ:SFST) opened at 28.59 on Tuesday. Southern First Bancshares has a one year low of $19.01 and a one year high of $31.11. The stock has a market cap of $181.69 million, a price-to-earnings ratio of 15.97 and a beta of 0.63. The company has a 50 day moving average price of $27.90 and a 200-day moving average price of $26.00.

Southern First Bancshares (NASDAQ:SFST) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, July 26th. The company reported $0.49 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.45 by $0.04. Southern First Bancshares had a net margin of 20.29% and a return on equity of 12.32%. Equities analysts predict that Southern First Bancshares will post $1.89 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

In other Southern First Bancshares news, President F Justin Strickland sold 1,400 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Monday, August 8th. The shares were sold at an average price of $27.00, for a total value of $37,800.00. Following the completion of the sale, the president now owns 56,158 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,516,266. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. Also, Director Fred Gilmer, Jr. sold 2,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, August 18th. The stock was sold at an average price of $27.25, for a total transaction of $54,500.00. Following the sale, the director now owns 54,751 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $1,491,964.75. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 14.50% of the stock is currently owned by company insiders.

Hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in the company. Royal Bank of Canada increased its stake in shares of Southern First Bancshares by 10.2% in the second quarter. Royal Bank of Canada now owns 8,660 shares of the company’s stock worth $209,000 after buying an additional 800 shares in the last quarter. Schwab Charles Investment Management Inc. purchased a new stake in shares of Southern First Bancshares during the second quarter worth about $213,000. Bridgeway Capital Management Inc. increased its stake in shares of Southern First Bancshares by 49.9% in the second quarter. Bridgeway Capital Management Inc. now owns 48,365 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,166,000 after buying an additional 16,100 shares in the last quarter. State Street Corp purchased a new stake in shares of Southern First Bancshares during the second quarter worth about $1,113,000. Finally, Maltese Capital Management LLC purchased a new stake in shares of Southern First Bancshares during the second quarter worth about $603,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 63.19% of the company’s stock.

Southern First Bancshares Company Profile

Southern First Bancshares, Inc is a bank holding company that owns the capital stock of Southern First Bank (the Bank), a South Carolina state bank, and all of the stock of Greenville First Statutory Trust I and II (the Trusts). The Bank is a commercial bank with approximately nine retail offices located in Greenville, Columbia and Charleston, South Carolina.

5 Day Chart for NASDAQ:SFST

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