Meadow Creek Investment Management LLC acquired a new position in First Financial Bancorp (NASDAQ:FFBC) in the second quarter, HoldingsChannel reports. The institutional investor acquired 10,098 shares of the bank’s stock, valued at approximately $310,000.

A number of other large investors have also modified their holdings of the stock. State of Alaska Department of Revenue boosted its holdings in First Financial Bancorp by 38.0% during the second quarter. State of Alaska Department of Revenue now owns 31,979 shares of the bank’s stock valued at $980,000 after acquiring an additional 8,800 shares during the period. Arizona State Retirement System boosted its holdings in First Financial Bancorp by 45.3% during the second quarter. Arizona State Retirement System now owns 142,408 shares of the bank’s stock valued at $4,365,000 after acquiring an additional 44,402 shares during the period. Bank of Montreal Can boosted its holdings in First Financial Bancorp by 33.2% during the second quarter. Bank of Montreal Can now owns 7,481 shares of the bank’s stock valued at $230,000 after acquiring an additional 1,866 shares during the period. Truepoint Inc. boosted its holdings in First Financial Bancorp by 2,444.4% during the second quarter. Truepoint Inc. now owns 8,829 shares of the bank’s stock valued at $271,000 after acquiring an additional 8,482 shares during the period. Finally, JPMorgan Chase & Co. boosted its holdings in First Financial Bancorp by 1.0% during the first quarter. JPMorgan Chase & Co. now owns 2,596,082 shares of the bank’s stock valued at $76,195,000 after acquiring an additional 26,278 shares during the period. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 74.25% of the company’s stock.

FFBC has been the subject of a number of recent analyst reports. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of First Financial Bancorp from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $34.00 price target for the company in a report on Wednesday, August 8th. BidaskClub raised shares of First Financial Bancorp from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report on Wednesday, July 11th. FIG Partners lowered shares of First Financial Bancorp from an “outperform” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Tuesday, May 15th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Barclays cut their price objective on shares of First Financial Bancorp from $32.00 to $31.00 and set a “$31.40” rating for the company in a research report on Monday, July 23rd. Finally, Sandler O’Neill reaffirmed a “buy” rating and set a $35.00 price objective on shares of First Financial Bancorp in a research report on Friday, July 20th. Seven equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and three have assigned a buy rating to the company. The stock has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $31.67.

NASDAQ:FFBC opened at $30.90 on Tuesday. First Financial Bancorp has a 12-month low of $23.50 and a 12-month high of $33.70. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.78, a current ratio of 0.93 and a quick ratio of 0.92. The stock has a market capitalization of $3.06 billion, a P/E ratio of 19.19, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.39 and a beta of 1.03.

First Financial Bancorp (NASDAQ:FFBC) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, July 19th. The bank reported $0.57 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.52 by $0.05. First Financial Bancorp had a net margin of 25.41% and a return on equity of 12.13%. The firm had revenue of $152.20 million during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $147.77 million. During the same quarter in the prior year, the business posted $0.37 earnings per share. The company’s quarterly revenue was up 77.0% compared to the same quarter last year. equities analysts predict that First Financial Bancorp will post 2.25 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, September 17th. Investors of record on Monday, September 3rd will be given a $0.20 dividend. This represents a $0.80 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.59%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, August 30th. This is a positive change from First Financial Bancorp’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.19. First Financial Bancorp’s dividend payout ratio is 49.69%.

In other news, Director John T. Neighbours sold 850 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, June 19th. The shares were sold at an average price of $32.50, for a total transaction of $27,625.00. Following the completion of the sale, the director now owns 8,026 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $260,845. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is accessible through this link. Also, COO Anthony M. Stollings sold 15,847 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, August 17th. The stock was sold at an average price of $31.59, for a total transaction of $500,606.73. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Company insiders own 3.36% of the company’s stock.

About First Financial Bancorp

First Financial Bancorp. operates as the bank holding company for First Financial Bank that provides commercial banking and other banking, and banking-related services to individuals and businesses in Ohio, Indiana, and Kentucky. The company accepts various deposit products, such as interest-bearing and noninterest-bearing accounts, time deposits, and cash management services for commercial customers.

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

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