State Board of Administration of Florida Retirement System continued to hold its stake in shares of First Financial Bancorp. (NASDAQ:FFBC) during the second quarter, according to its most recent 13F filing with the SEC. The institutional investor owned 65,688 shares of the bank’s stock at the end of the second quarter. State Board of Administration of Florida Retirement System owned 0.11% of First Financial Bancorp. worth $1,820,000 as of its most recent SEC filing.

A number of other institutional investors and hedge funds have also recently made changes to their positions in the business. Marshall Wace North America L.P. acquired a new position in First Financial Bancorp. during the second quarter valued at approximately $1,269,000. BNP Paribas Arbitrage SA raised its position in First Financial Bancorp. by 52.9% during the second quarter. BNP Paribas Arbitrage SA now owns 19,271 shares of the bank’s stock valued at $534,000 after purchasing an additional 6,665 shares in the last quarter. Legal & General Group Plc raised its position in First Financial Bancorp. by 12.7% during the second quarter. Legal & General Group Plc now owns 123,816 shares of the bank’s stock valued at $3,430,000 after purchasing an additional 13,953 shares in the last quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp raised its position in First Financial Bancorp. by 1.9% during the second quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp now owns 1,242,617 shares of the bank’s stock valued at $34,420,000 after purchasing an additional 23,538 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Alps Advisors Inc. raised its position in First Financial Bancorp. by 0.3% during the second quarter. Alps Advisors Inc. now owns 17,163 shares of the bank’s stock valued at $475,000 after purchasing an additional 45 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 74.23% of the company’s stock.

Several research analysts have commented on FFBC shares. BidaskClub downgraded shares of First Financial Bancorp. from a “sell” rating to a “strong sell” rating in a research report on Tuesday, August 22nd. Barclays PLC lowered their price objective on shares of First Financial Bancorp. from $27.00 to $25.00 and set an “underweight” rating for the company in a research report on Thursday, July 27th. Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of First Financial Bancorp. from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Monday, June 26th. Piper Jaffray Companies set a $28.00 price objective on shares of First Financial Bancorp. and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research report on Tuesday, July 25th. Finally, Sandler O’Neill upgraded shares of First Financial Bancorp. from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and boosted their price objective for the company from $28.00 to $29.00 in a research report on Friday, July 28th. Two analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, six have given a hold rating and three have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. First Financial Bancorp. presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $28.50.

In other news, insider C Douglas Lefferson sold 40,000 shares of First Financial Bancorp. stock in a transaction on Tuesday, August 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $25.69, for a total transaction of $1,027,600.00. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now directly owns 74,170 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $1,905,427.30. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through this hyperlink. Over the last three months, insiders acquired 797 shares of company stock valued at $20,099. Insiders own 1.88% of the company’s stock.

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First Financial Bancorp. (NASDAQ:FFBC) opened at 24.75 on Thursday. The firm has a market capitalization of $1.54 billion, a P/E ratio of 16.39 and a beta of 1.19. The stock’s 50 day moving average is $24.73 and its 200 day moving average is $26.57. First Financial Bancorp. has a one year low of $20.55 and a one year high of $29.80.

First Financial Bancorp. (NASDAQ:FFBC) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, July 25th. The bank reported $0.37 EPS for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.38 by ($0.01). First Financial Bancorp. had a net margin of 24.28% and a return on equity of 10.65%. The firm had revenue of $85.97 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $89.52 million. During the same period in the previous year, the business earned $0.36 earnings per share. On average, equities research analysts predict that First Financial Bancorp. will post $1.52 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, October 2nd. Shareholders of record on Friday, September 1st will be issued a $0.17 dividend. This represents a $0.68 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.75%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Wednesday, August 30th. First Financial Bancorp.’s payout ratio is 45.03%.

First Financial Bancorp. Profile

First Financial Bancorp. (First Financial) is a regional bank holding company. First Financial is engaged in the business of commercial banking and other banking and banking-related activities through its subsidiary, First Financial Bank, National Association (the Bank). The range of banking services provided by First Financial to individuals and businesses include commercial lending, real estate lending and consumer financing.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for First Financial Bancorp. (NASDAQ:FFBC)

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