Business First Bancshares (NASDAQ:BFST) Coverage Initiated by Analysts at DA Davidson

DA Davidson started coverage on shares of Business First Bancshares (NASDAQ:BFST) in a research report sent to investors on Wednesday morning, BenzingaRatingsTable reports. The brokerage issued a neutral rating and a $28.00 price target on the stock.

A number of other equities research analysts also recently weighed in on BFST. ValuEngine downgraded shares of China Southern Airlines from a hold rating to a sell rating in a research note on Monday, April 29th. Stephens began coverage on shares of LiqTech International in a research note on Tuesday. They set an overweight rating and a $13.00 price target for the company. Zacks Investment Research raised shares of FirstService from a strong sell rating to a hold rating and set a $110.00 price target for the company in a research note on Tuesday, June 25th. Finally, FIG Partners reissued an outperform rating on shares of SmartFinancial in a research note on Thursday, April 25th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, three have given a hold rating and two have given a buy rating to the company. The company has an average rating of Hold and an average target price of $27.67.

Shares of NASDAQ BFST traded down $0.11 during trading on Wednesday, reaching $25.29. The company had a trading volume of 9,376 shares, compared to its average volume of 16,282. Business First Bancshares has a 52 week low of $20.64 and a 52 week high of $27.40. The stock has a market cap of $344.19 million, a PE ratio of 17.44 and a beta of 0.18. The company has a current ratio of 0.95, a quick ratio of 0.95 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.20. The business’s 50 day moving average is $25.13.

Business First Bancshares (NASDAQ:BFST) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, April 23rd. The company reported $0.41 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.40 by $0.01. The business had revenue of $21.43 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $21.29 million. Business First Bancshares had a net margin of 18.11% and a return on equity of 7.91%. As a group, equities analysts expect that Business First Bancshares will post 1.82 EPS for the current year.

A number of large investors have recently modified their holdings of the business. New York State Common Retirement Fund increased its stake in Business First Bancshares by 14.2% in the fourth quarter. New York State Common Retirement Fund now owns 12,100 shares of the company’s stock valued at $293,000 after purchasing an additional 1,500 shares in the last quarter. BNP Paribas Arbitrage SA boosted its holdings in shares of Business First Bancshares by 431.1% in the first quarter. BNP Paribas Arbitrage SA now owns 2,257 shares of the company’s stock valued at $55,000 after buying an additional 1,832 shares during the period. Metropolitan Life Insurance Co. NY boosted its holdings in shares of Business First Bancshares by 192.6% in the fourth quarter. Metropolitan Life Insurance Co. NY now owns 3,467 shares of the company’s stock valued at $84,000 after buying an additional 2,282 shares during the period. Bank of America Corp DE boosted its holdings in shares of Business First Bancshares by 81.5% in the fourth quarter. Bank of America Corp DE now owns 7,299 shares of the company’s stock valued at $177,000 after buying an additional 3,278 shares during the period. Finally, Northern Trust Corp boosted its holdings in shares of Business First Bancshares by 3.3% in the fourth quarter. Northern Trust Corp now owns 107,305 shares of the company’s stock valued at $2,600,000 after buying an additional 3,418 shares during the period. 43.17% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

About Business First Bancshares

Business First Bancshares, Inc operates as the bank holding company for Business First Bank that provides various banking products and services. It offers various deposit products and services, including a range of checking, demand, money market, time, and savings accounts, as well as certificates of deposit; and remote deposit capture and direct deposit services.

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