First Merchants Co. (NASDAQ:FRME) Shares Purchased by Zurcher Kantonalbank Zurich Cantonalbank

Zurcher Kantonalbank Zurich Cantonalbank raised its holdings in shares of First Merchants Co. (NASDAQ:FRMEGet Rating) by 29.0% during the fourth quarter, HoldingsChannel reports. The institutional investor owned 8,534 shares of the bank’s stock after acquiring an additional 1,916 shares during the quarter. Zurcher Kantonalbank Zurich Cantonalbank’s holdings in First Merchants were worth $357,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.

Other hedge funds have also made changes to their positions in the company. Point72 Hong Kong Ltd acquired a new position in First Merchants during the third quarter valued at approximately $41,000. Signaturefd LLC lifted its position in First Merchants by 144.6% during the third quarter. Signaturefd LLC now owns 1,639 shares of the bank’s stock valued at $69,000 after buying an additional 969 shares in the last quarter. Amundi Pioneer Asset Management Inc. acquired a new position in First Merchants during the first quarter valued at approximately $151,000. GSA Capital Partners LLP acquired a new position in First Merchants during the third quarter valued at approximately $201,000. Finally, LPL Financial LLC lifted its position in shares of First Merchants by 11.3% during the third quarter. LPL Financial LLC now owns 5,829 shares of the bank’s stock worth $244,000 after purchasing an additional 590 shares in the last quarter. 71.98% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

Shares of NASDAQ:FRME opened at $42.32 on Friday. The company has a current ratio of 0.76, a quick ratio of 0.75 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.24. The company has a fifty day simple moving average of $42.25 and a 200 day simple moving average of $42.46. The firm has a market cap of $2.28 billion, a PE ratio of 11.11 and a beta of 1.10. First Merchants Co. has a 12-month low of $37.67 and a 12-month high of $48.66.

First Merchants (NASDAQ:FRMEGet Rating) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, January 27th. The bank reported $0.89 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.94 by ($0.05). The company had revenue of $127.12 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $134.63 million. First Merchants had a return on equity of 11.02% and a net margin of 36.97%. During the same quarter last year, the firm posted $0.83 EPS. As a group, equities research analysts forecast that First Merchants Co. will post 3.73 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, March 18th. Investors of record on Friday, March 4th were paid a $0.29 dividend. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, March 3rd. This represents a $1.16 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 2.74%. First Merchants’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 30.45%.

A number of research firms have recently commented on FRME. StockNews.com began coverage on shares of First Merchants in a research report on Thursday, March 31st. They set a “hold” rating on the stock. Zacks Investment Research raised shares of First Merchants from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $46.00 target price on the stock in a research report on Monday, April 4th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a hold rating and four have assigned a buy rating to the company. Based on data from MarketBeat.com, the company presently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $47.00.

First Merchants Profile (Get Rating)

First Merchants Corporation operates as the financial holding company for First Merchants Bank that provides community banking services. It accepts time, savings, and demand deposits; and provides consumer, commercial, agri-business, and real estate mortgage loans, as well as public finance. The company also offers personal and corporate trust; brokerage and private wealth management; and letters of credit, repurchase agreements, and other corporate services.

See Also

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for First Merchants (NASDAQ:FRME)

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