Media coverage about First Financial Bancorp. (NASDAQ:FFBC) has been trending somewhat positive recently, according to Accern Sentiment. The research group identifies negative and positive news coverage by monitoring more than twenty million news and blog sources. Accern ranks coverage of publicly-traded companies on a scale of negative one to positive one, with scores closest to one being the most favorable. First Financial Bancorp. earned a daily sentiment score of 0.23 on Accern’s scale. Accern also gave press coverage about the bank an impact score of 46.1711661453395 out of 100, meaning that recent news coverage is somewhat unlikely to have an effect on the stock’s share price in the immediate future.

Here are some of the media headlines that may have effected Accern’s rankings:

First Financial Bancorp. (NASDAQ:FFBC) remained flat at $27.50 on Monday. The stock had a trading volume of 291,278 shares. The firm has a market capitalization of $1.71 billion, a P/E ratio of 18.21 and a beta of 1.20. The company has a 50-day moving average of $25.38 and a 200 day moving average of $26.24. First Financial Bancorp. has a 1-year low of $20.55 and a 1-year high of $29.80.

First Financial Bancorp. (NASDAQ:FFBC) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, October 19th. The bank reported $0.40 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.38 by $0.02. The business had revenue of $83.95 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $88.30 million. First Financial Bancorp. had a return on equity of 11.33% and a net margin of 26.49%. During the same quarter in the previous year, the business earned $0.37 EPS. Analysts anticipate that First Financial Bancorp. will post $1.53 EPS for the current year.

The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Monday, October 2nd. Stockholders of record on Friday, September 1st were issued a $0.17 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Wednesday, August 30th. This represents a $0.68 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 2.47%. First Financial Bancorp.’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 43.04%.

A number of research firms have weighed in on FFBC. Sandler O’Neill raised First Financial Bancorp. from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and increased their target price for the company from $28.00 to $29.00 in a report on Friday, July 28th. Barclays PLC lowered their target price on First Financial Bancorp. from $27.00 to $25.00 and set an “underweight” rating on the stock in a report on Thursday, July 27th. Piper Jaffray Companies set a $28.00 target price on First Financial Bancorp. and gave the company a “hold” rating in a report on Tuesday, July 25th. Zacks Investment Research downgraded First Financial Bancorp. from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Tuesday, October 3rd. Finally, Royal Bank Of Canada reissued a “hold” rating and issued a $28.00 target price on shares of First Financial Bancorp. in a report on Friday, September 8th. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, five have issued a hold rating and three have given a buy rating to the company. The stock has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $28.57.

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In other news, insider C Douglas Lefferson sold 40,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, August 1st. The stock was sold at an average price of $25.69, for a total value of $1,027,600.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now owns 74,170 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $1,905,427.30. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is accessible through this link. In the last three months, insiders bought 801 shares of company stock valued at $20,054. Insiders own 1.88% of the company’s stock.

First Financial Bancorp. Company 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.

Insider Buying and Selling by Quarter for First Financial Bancorp. (NASDAQ:FFBC)

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