Equities research analysts forecast that First Bancorp (NASDAQ:FBNC) will report $0.53 earnings per share for the current fiscal quarter, Zacks Investment Research reports. Two analysts have issued estimates for First Bancorp’s earnings, with the lowest EPS estimate coming in at $0.51 and the highest estimate coming in at $0.57. First Bancorp reported earnings per share of $0.40 in the same quarter last year, which suggests a positive year over year growth rate of 32.5%. The company is scheduled to report its next quarterly earnings report on Thursday, January 25th.

According to Zacks, analysts expect that First Bancorp will report full year earnings of $2.03 per share for the current year, with EPS estimates ranging from $2.00 to $2.05. For the next year, analysts anticipate that the business will post earnings of $2.37 per share, with EPS estimates ranging from $2.28 to $2.55. Zacks Investment Research’s earnings per share averages are an average based on a survey of analysts that that provide coverage for First Bancorp.

A number of equities research analysts have commented on the stock. Piper Jaffray Companies reissued a “buy” rating and issued a $42.00 price objective on shares of First Bancorp in a research report on Tuesday. Zacks Investment Research raised shares of First Bancorp from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $40.00 price objective on the stock in a research report on Wednesday, January 3rd. Brean Capital reissued a “buy” rating on shares of First Bancorp in a research report on Tuesday, January 2nd. ValuEngine raised shares of First Bancorp from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report on Sunday, December 31st. Finally, Keefe, Bruyette & Woods reissued a “buy” rating and issued a $41.00 price objective on shares of First Bancorp in a research report on Friday, December 22nd. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and five have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock currently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $39.50.

In related news, insider Suzanne S. Deferie sold 12,001 shares of the stock in a transaction on Wednesday, December 27th. The shares were sold at an average price of $35.67, for a total value of $428,075.67. Following the transaction, the insider now directly owns 113,408 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $4,045,263.36. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this link. Also, CEO Richard H. Moore acquired 2,755 shares of the stock in a transaction on Wednesday, December 20th. The shares were acquired at an average cost of $36.00 per share, for a total transaction of $99,180.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief executive officer now directly owns 121,741 shares in the company, valued at approximately $4,382,676. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. Company insiders own 2.37% of the company’s stock.

A number of institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of FBNC. Vanguard Group Inc. grew its position in First Bancorp by 24.8% during the 2nd quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 1,000,939 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $31,290,000 after purchasing an additional 198,866 shares during the last quarter. Macquarie Group Ltd. grew its position in First Bancorp by 30.4% during the 3rd quarter. Macquarie Group Ltd. now owns 619,044 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $21,301,000 after purchasing an additional 144,201 shares during the last quarter. State Street Corp grew its position in First Bancorp by 27.9% during the 2nd quarter. State Street Corp now owns 461,813 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $14,436,000 after purchasing an additional 100,632 shares during the last quarter. Banc Funds Co. LLC grew its position in First Bancorp by 18.5% during the 2nd quarter. Banc Funds Co. LLC now owns 592,556 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $18,523,000 after purchasing an additional 92,392 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Jennison Associates LLC purchased a new position in First Bancorp during the 3rd quarter worth $3,124,000. 56.51% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

Shares of First Bancorp (NASDAQ:FBNC) traded down $0.55 during trading hours on Tuesday, hitting $35.68. 58,900 shares of the company’s stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 113,180. First Bancorp has a 52 week low of $26.47 and a 52 week high of $41.76. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.78, a quick ratio of 1.05 and a current ratio of 1.05. The stock has a market cap of $1,074.00, a P/E ratio of 20.74, a PEG ratio of 1.22 and a beta of 1.10.

The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, January 25th. Investors of record on Sunday, December 31st will be given a $0.08 dividend. This represents a $0.32 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 0.90%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, December 28th. First Bancorp’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 18.60%.

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First Bancorp Company Profile

First Bancorp is the bank holding company for First Bank (the Bank). The Company’s principal activity is the ownership and operation of First Bank. The Bank engages in a range of banking activities, including the acceptance of deposits and the making of loans. The Bank offers credit cards, debit cards, letters of credit, safe deposit box rentals and electronic funds transfer services, including wire transfers.

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Earnings History and Estimates for First Bancorp (NASDAQ:FBNC)

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