B. Riley Downgrades First Busey (NASDAQ:BUSE) to Neutral

First Busey (NASDAQ:BUSE) was downgraded by research analysts at B. Riley from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating in a report released on Wednesday, MarketBeat reports. They currently have a $28.00 price target on the bank’s stock, down from their previous price target of $30.00. B. Riley’s price objective would indicate a potential upside of 13.31% from the stock’s current price. B. Riley also issued estimates for First Busey’s Q3 2019 earnings at $0.52 EPS, Q4 2019 earnings at $0.54 EPS, FY2019 earnings at $2.07 EPS, Q1 2020 earnings at $0.51 EPS, Q2 2020 earnings at $0.55 EPS, Q3 2020 earnings at $0.54 EPS and FY2020 earnings at $2.15 EPS.

Several other equities analysts have also weighed in on the stock. BidaskClub raised shares of First Busey from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Friday, July 26th. ValuEngine raised shares of First Busey from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Thursday, August 1st. Stephens lowered shares of First Busey from an “overweight” rating to an “equal weight” rating and dropped their price objective for the company from $30.00 to $29.00 in a research report on Tuesday, July 9th. Finally, Zacks Investment Research raised shares of First Busey from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Wednesday, July 24th. Six research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, The stock presently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $29.25.

Shares of BUSE opened at $24.71 on Wednesday. The firm has a market capitalization of $1.38 billion, a PE ratio of 11.77, a PEG ratio of 2.09 and a beta of 0.99. The company’s 50-day moving average is $25.98 and its 200-day moving average is $25.83. First Busey has a fifty-two week low of $23.13 and a fifty-two week high of $32.47. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.22, a current ratio of 0.86 and a quick ratio of 0.86.

In other First Busey news, Director Stanley J. Bradshaw purchased 1,183 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, May 30th. The shares were acquired at an average cost of $24.95 per share, for a total transaction of $29,515.85. Following the completion of the purchase, the director now owns 4,195 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $104,665.25. The purchase was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this link. Insiders purchased 1,690 shares of company stock worth $42,357 over the last 90 days. 7.50% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.

A number of institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in BUSE. Bank of Edwardsville grew its stake in First Busey by 99.2% during the second quarter. Bank of Edwardsville now owns 1,117,096 shares of the bank’s stock worth $29,503,000 after buying an additional 556,401 shares in the last quarter. BlackRock Inc. grew its stake in First Busey by 12.9% during the second quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 3,682,186 shares of the bank’s stock worth $97,246,000 after buying an additional 419,408 shares in the last quarter. Nuveen Asset Management LLC grew its stake in First Busey by 18.4% during the second quarter. Nuveen Asset Management LLC now owns 1,598,947 shares of the bank’s stock worth $42,228,000 after buying an additional 248,613 shares in the last quarter. Deprince Race & Zollo Inc. grew its stake in First Busey by 28.4% during the second quarter. Deprince Race & Zollo Inc. now owns 1,092,883 shares of the bank’s stock worth $28,863,000 after buying an additional 241,747 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Kennedy Capital Management Inc. grew its stake in First Busey by 50.4% during the first quarter. Kennedy Capital Management Inc. now owns 224,722 shares of the bank’s stock worth $5,483,000 after buying an additional 75,276 shares in the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 48.27% of the company’s stock.

About First Busey

First Busey Corporation operates as the bank holding company for Busey Bank that provides retail and commercial banking products and services to individual, corporate, institutional, and governmental customers in the United States. The company operates in three segments: Banking, Remittance Processing, and Wealth Management.

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