First Merchants (FRME) Upgraded by BidaskClub to Hold

BidaskClub upgraded shares of First Merchants (NASDAQ:FRME) from a sell rating to a hold rating in a research note released on Saturday morning, BidAskClub reports.

Other equities analysts have also issued research reports about the company. Raymond James assumed coverage on First Merchants in a research note on Monday, April 8th. They issued an outperform rating and a $42.00 price target on the stock. Zacks Investment Research lowered First Merchants from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research note on Thursday, April 11th. Piper Jaffray Companies set a $44.00 price target on First Merchants and gave the company a buy rating in a research note on Wednesday, April 10th. Finally, FIG Partners reiterated a market-perform rating on shares of First Merchants in a research note on Friday, February 1st. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, three have assigned a hold rating and three have issued a buy rating to the stock. The company currently has a consensus rating of Hold and a consensus target price of $44.25.

Shares of FRME opened at $39.07 on Friday. First Merchants has a 52-week low of $32.49 and a 52-week high of $50.44. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.32, a quick ratio of 0.92 and a current ratio of 0.92. The firm has a market capitalization of $1.96 billion, a PE ratio of 12.13, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.65 and a beta of 0.97.

First Merchants (NASDAQ:FRME) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, January 31st. The bank reported $0.85 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.82 by $0.03. First Merchants had a return on equity of 11.74% and a net margin of 32.85%. The company had revenue of $107.06 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $107.40 million. Equities research analysts expect that First Merchants will post 3.42 earnings per share for the current year.

A number of hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of the stock. Ullmann Financial Group Inc. bought a new stake in First Merchants during the 1st quarter worth $206,000. Deutsche Bank AG grew its position in First Merchants by 21.2% during the 4th quarter. Deutsche Bank AG now owns 167,531 shares of the bank’s stock worth $5,739,000 after acquiring an additional 29,259 shares during the last quarter. American Century Companies Inc. bought a new stake in First Merchants during the 4th quarter worth $469,000. Geode Capital Management LLC grew its position in First Merchants by 10.5% during the 4th quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC now owns 570,956 shares of the bank’s stock worth $19,566,000 after acquiring an additional 54,304 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Norges Bank bought a new stake in First Merchants during the 4th quarter worth $16,402,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 72.78% of the company’s stock.

About First Merchants

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 rents safe deposit facilities.

Recommended Story: Net Margin

Receive News & Ratings for First Merchants Daily - Enter your email address below to receive a concise daily summary of the latest news and analysts' ratings for First Merchants and related companies with MarketBeat.com's FREE daily email newsletter.