Credit Suisse AG lowered its stake in shares of First Financial Bancorp. (NASDAQ:FFBC) by 15.6% during the first quarter, according to its most recent disclosure with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The institutional investor owned 66,810 shares of the bank’s stock after selling 12,359 shares during the period. Credit Suisse AG’s holdings in First Financial Bancorp. were worth $1,833,000 as of its most recent filing with the SEC.

A number of other institutional investors have also bought and sold shares of FFBC. Miles Capital Inc. increased its position in First Financial Bancorp. by 0.3% in the first quarter. Miles Capital Inc. now owns 10,135 shares of the bank’s stock valued at $278,000 after buying an additional 27 shares during the period. IFP Advisors Inc increased its stake in shares of First Financial Bancorp. by 0.5% in the first quarter. IFP Advisors Inc now owns 6,506 shares of the bank’s stock worth $179,000 after buying an additional 31 shares during the period. Lincoln National Corp increased its stake in shares of First Financial Bancorp. by 0.6% in the first quarter. Lincoln National Corp now owns 10,489 shares of the bank’s stock worth $288,000 after buying an additional 58 shares during the period. Bbva Compass Bancshares Inc. increased its stake in shares of First Financial Bancorp. by 0.7% in the first quarter. Bbva Compass Bancshares Inc. now owns 15,039 shares of the bank’s stock worth $412,000 after buying an additional 107 shares during the period. Finally, Bronfman E.L. Rothschild L.P. increased its stake in shares of First Financial Bancorp. by 2.8% in the first quarter. Bronfman E.L. Rothschild L.P. now owns 4,439 shares of the bank’s stock worth $122,000 after buying an additional 122 shares during the period. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 67.23% of the company’s stock.

Shares of First Financial Bancorp. (NASDAQ:FFBC) traded down 1.109% during midday trading on Friday, hitting $24.525. 223,050 shares of the stock were exchanged. First Financial Bancorp. has a one year low of $20.55 and a one year high of $29.80. The stock has a market cap of $1.52 billion, a P/E ratio of 16.242 and a beta of 1.18. The stock’s 50-day moving average price is $26.98 and its 200 day moving average price is $27.20.

First Financial Bancorp. (NASDAQ:FFBC) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, July 25th. The bank reported $0.37 EPS for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates 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 for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $89.52 million. During the same period in the prior year, the company posted $0.36 earnings per share. On average, analysts anticipate that First Financial Bancorp. will post $1.52 earnings per share for the current year.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, October 2nd. Shareholders of record on Friday, September 1st will be paid a dividend of $0.17 per share. This represents a $0.68 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 2.74%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Wednesday, August 30th. First Financial Bancorp.’s dividend payout ratio is presently 45.03%.

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A number of equities research analysts have recently commented on FFBC shares. Barclays PLC lowered their price target on shares of First Financial Bancorp. from $27.00 to $25.00 and set an “underweight” rating for the company in a report on Thursday, July 27th. Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of First Financial Bancorp. from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Monday, June 26th. Piper Jaffray Companies set a $28.00 price target on shares of First Financial Bancorp. and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a report on Tuesday, July 25th. Sandler O’Neill upgraded shares of First Financial Bancorp. from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and lifted their price target for the stock from $28.00 to $29.00 in a report on Friday, July 28th. Finally, BidaskClub downgraded shares of First Financial Bancorp. from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Friday, July 28th. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, five have issued a hold rating and four have issued a buy rating to the stock. The company has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $28.63.

In other First Financial Bancorp. news, insider C Douglas Lefferson sold 40,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated 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 $1,905,427.30. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this link. 1.88% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.

About First Financial Bancorp.

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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