Deprince Race & Zollo Inc. Has $16,975,000 Position in First Merchants Corp. (FRME)
Deprince Race & Zollo Inc. raised its position in First Merchants Corp. (NASDAQ:FRME) by 0.1% during the second quarter, Holdings Channel reports. The fund owned 680,916 shares of the company’s stock after buying an additional 448 shares during the period. Deprince Race & Zollo Inc.’s holdings in First Merchants Corp. were worth $16,975,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.
A number of other hedge funds have also bought and sold shares of the company. Goldman Sachs Group Inc. boosted its stake in First Merchants Corp. by 16.0% in the first quarter. Goldman Sachs Group Inc. now owns 1,410,785 shares of the company’s stock worth $33,252,000 after buying an additional 194,382 shares during the last quarter. BlackRock Institutional Trust Company N.A. boosted its stake in First Merchants Corp. by 3.4% in the first quarter. BlackRock Institutional Trust Company N.A. now owns 1,124,355 shares of the company’s stock worth $26,501,000 after buying an additional 37,002 shares during the last quarter. BlackRock Fund Advisors boosted its stake in First Merchants Corp. by 4.3% in the first quarter. BlackRock Fund Advisors now owns 1,026,875 shares of the company’s stock worth $24,203,000 after buying an additional 42,539 shares during the last quarter. Renaissance Technologies LLC boosted its stake in First Merchants Corp. by 1.0% in the first quarter. Renaissance Technologies LLC now owns 797,029 shares of the company’s stock worth $18,786,000 after buying an additional 7,995 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Prudential Financial Inc. boosted its stake in First Merchants Corp. by 26.6% in the first quarter. Prudential Financial Inc. now owns 275,452 shares of the company’s stock worth $6,492,000 after buying an additional 57,800 shares during the last quarter. 75.24% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.
First Merchants Corp. (NASDAQ:FRME) traded up 1.02% during midday trading on Wednesday, hitting $26.87. The stock had a trading volume of 179,895 shares. The stock’s 50-day moving average is $26.91 and its 200-day moving average is $25.53. The stock has a market capitalization of $1.10 billion, a PE ratio of 15.41 and a beta of 1.05. First Merchants Corp. has a 1-year low of $21.10 and a 1-year high of $27.60.
First Merchants Corp. (NASDAQ:FRME) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, July 26th. The company reported $0.49 EPS for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.46 by $0.03. First Merchants Corp. had a return on equity of 8.18% and a net margin of 22.88%. On average, equities research analysts anticipate that First Merchants Corp. will post $1.90 EPS for the current fiscal year.
The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, September 16th. Investors of record on Friday, September 2nd were paid a $0.14 dividend. This represents a $0.56 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 2.08%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Wednesday, August 31st. First Merchants Corp.’s dividend payout ratio is currently 32.18%.
A number of analysts recently issued reports on FRME shares. Piper Jaffray Cos. started coverage on First Merchants Corp. in a research note on Monday, July 11th. They set a “neutral” rating and a $27.00 target price for the company. Zacks Investment Research raised shares of First Merchants Corp. from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $28.00 price target for the company in a research note on Monday, June 13th. DA Davidson assumed coverage on shares of First Merchants Corp. in a research note on Thursday, July 21st. They set a “buy” rating and a $29.00 price target for the company. Finally, Keefe, Bruyette & Woods raised their price target on shares of First Merchants Corp. from $27.00 to $28.50 and gave the stock an “outperform” rating in a research note on Wednesday, July 27th. Three analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and three have assigned a buy rating to the company. The stock has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $28.10.
In other First Merchants Corp. news, insider Michael J. Stewart sold 3,500 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, August 25th. The stock was sold at an average price of $27.24, for a total value of $95,340.00. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available through the SEC website. Also, insider John Martin sold 5,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, August 18th. The shares were sold at an average price of $26.92, for a total value of $134,600.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now directly owns 31,921 shares in the company, valued at $859,313.32. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 1.62% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.
About First Merchants Corp.
First Merchants Corporation is a financial holding Company. The Company has a bank charter, First Merchants Bank, National Association (the Bank), which is opened for business in Muncie, Indiana. The Bank also operates Lafayette Bank and Trust, Ameriana Bank, Ameriana Financial Services and First Merchants Trust Company as divisions of First Merchants Bank, N.A.
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