Meridian Co. (NASDAQ:MRBK) Sees Significant Growth in Short Interest


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Meridian Co. (NASDAQ:MRBK) was the target of a large increase in short interest during the month of March. As of March 31st, there was short interest totalling 64,500 shares, an increase of 35.2% from the March 15th total of 47,700 shares. Currently, 1.2% of the shares of the stock are sold short. Based on an average daily volume of 33,100 shares, the short-interest ratio is presently 1.9 days.

Separately, Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of Meridian from a “strong-buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Wednesday, April 7th.

Shares of MRBK stock traded down $0.31 during trading hours on Monday, hitting $25.53. 16,808 shares of the company’s stock traded hands, compared to its average volume of 31,956. The stock’s 50 day simple moving average is $25.93 and its 200 day simple moving average is $21.48. The stock has a market cap of $157.47 million, a PE ratio of 7.67 and a beta of 0.49. Meridian has a 12 month low of $12.28 and a 12 month high of $27.96. The company has a quick ratio of 1.04, a current ratio of 1.21 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 2.21.

Meridian (NASDAQ:MRBK) last released its quarterly earnings results on Sunday, January 31st. The company reported $1.48 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.84 by $0.64. The firm had revenue of $44.96 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $31.02 million. Meridian had a net margin of 16.13% and a return on equity of 16.59%. As a group, equities research analysts expect that Meridian will post 3.62 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently declared a None dividend, which was paid on Monday, March 15th. Stockholders of record on Monday, March 1st were paid a dividend of $1.00 per share. The ex-dividend date was Friday, February 26th. Meridian’s payout ratio is currently 28.90%.

Several hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. BlackRock Inc. increased its position in shares of Meridian by 17.0% during the fourth quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 266,724 shares of the company’s stock worth $5,548,000 after buying an additional 38,677 shares during the period. JPMorgan Chase & Co. increased its position in shares of Meridian by 14.7% during the fourth quarter. JPMorgan Chase & Co. now owns 41,056 shares of the company’s stock worth $854,000 after buying an additional 5,267 shares during the period. Renaissance Technologies LLC increased its position in shares of Meridian by 207.0% during the fourth quarter. Renaissance Technologies LLC now owns 37,120 shares of the company’s stock worth $772,000 after buying an additional 25,029 shares during the period. Wells Fargo & Company MN increased its position in shares of Meridian by 29.7% during the fourth quarter. Wells Fargo & Company MN now owns 23,706 shares of the company’s stock worth $493,000 after buying an additional 5,434 shares during the period. Finally, Bank of New York Mellon Corp increased its position in shares of Meridian by 53.0% during the fourth quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp now owns 19,025 shares of the company’s stock worth $396,000 after buying an additional 6,590 shares during the period. 39.47% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

Meridian Company Profile

Meridian Corporation operates as the bank holding for Meridian Bank that provides commercial banking products and services for small and middle market businesses primarily in southeast Pennsylvania, Delaware, and southern New Jersey. The company offers non-interest and interest checking deposits and time deposits, as well as money market, and savings accounts; and commercial and industrial loans, commercial real estate loans, and consumer and home equity loans, as well as business lines of credit, term loans, small business lending, lease financing, and shared national credits.

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