Dimensional Fund Advisors LP grew its position in First Financial Bancorp. (NASDAQ:FFBC) by 1.0% during the third quarter, according to the company in its most recent disclosure with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The institutional investor owned 3,144,757 shares of the bank’s stock after purchasing an additional 30,068 shares during the period. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP owned approximately 5.07% of First Financial Bancorp. worth $82,236,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.

Other institutional investors have also recently modified their holdings of the company. SG Americas Securities LLC bought a new stake in shares of First Financial Bancorp. in the third quarter valued at about $125,000. Ameritas Investment Partners Inc. lifted its holdings in shares of First Financial Bancorp. by 6.9% in the second quarter. Ameritas Investment Partners Inc. now owns 5,410 shares of the bank’s stock valued at $150,000 after purchasing an additional 349 shares in the last quarter. FDx Advisors Inc. bought a new stake in shares of First Financial Bancorp. in the third quarter valued at about $205,000. Amalgamated Bank lifted its holdings in shares of First Financial Bancorp. by 1.2% in the second quarter. Amalgamated Bank now owns 8,406 shares of the bank’s stock valued at $233,000 after purchasing an additional 102 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Crossmark Global Holdings Inc. acquired a new stake in shares of First Financial Bancorp. in the third quarter valued at about $250,000. Institutional investors own 77.87% of the company’s stock.

A number of research firms recently issued reports on FFBC. Zacks Investment Research downgraded First Financial Bancorp. from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report on Tuesday, October 3rd. Royal Bank of Canada reaffirmed a “hold” rating and issued a $28.00 target price on shares of First Financial Bancorp. in a research report on Friday, September 8th. BidaskClub downgraded First Financial Bancorp. from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Saturday, December 16th. Piper Jaffray Companies set a $28.00 target price on First Financial Bancorp. and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research report on Friday, October 6th. Finally, Barclays lifted their target price on First Financial Bancorp. from $25.00 to $27.00 and gave the company an “underweight” rating in a research report on Monday, October 23rd. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, five have issued a hold rating, three have given a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock currently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $29.00.

Shares of First Financial Bancorp. (NASDAQ:FFBC) opened at $27.25 on Friday. The company has a quick ratio of 0.93, a current ratio of 0.93 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.02. The stock has a market capitalization of $1,670.00, a PE ratio of 17.81, a P/E/G ratio of 1.77 and a beta of 1.16. First Financial Bancorp. has a 12-month low of $22.80 and a 12-month high of $29.40.

First Financial Bancorp. (NASDAQ:FFBC) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, October 19th. The bank reported $0.40 earnings per share for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.38 by $0.02. The firm 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 11.22% and a net margin of 26.49%. During the same quarter in the previous year, the business earned $0.37 earnings per share. research analysts expect that First Financial Bancorp. will post 1.56 EPS for the current year.

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, January 2nd. Shareholders of record on Friday, December 1st will be given a dividend of $0.17 per share. This represents a $0.68 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 2.50%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, November 30th. First Financial Bancorp.’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 44.44%.

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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.

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

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