First Bancorp (NASDAQ:FBNC) Raised to “Buy” at BidaskClub

BidaskClub upgraded shares of First Bancorp (NASDAQ:FBNC) from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research report sent to investors on Wednesday morning, BidAskClub reports.

A number of other research firms have also recently commented on FBNC. ValuEngine cut shares of First Bancorp from a hold rating to a sell rating in a report on Tuesday, July 2nd. Zacks Investment Research raised shares of First Bancorp from a hold rating to a buy rating and set a $39.00 target price for the company in a report on Friday, September 6th. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, one has issued a hold rating and six have issued a buy rating to the stock. First Bancorp currently has an average rating of Buy and an average price target of $39.75.

FBNC stock opened at $36.73 on Wednesday. The stock has a market capitalization of $1.10 billion, a P/E ratio of 12.03, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 2.51 and a beta of 1.14. The company has a current ratio of 0.97, a quick ratio of 0.96 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.37. First Bancorp has a 12 month low of $30.50 and a 12 month high of $41.74. The firm has a 50-day moving average price of $35.69 and a 200-day moving average price of $36.26.

First Bancorp (NASDAQ:FBNC) last posted its earnings results on Wednesday, July 24th. The financial services provider reported $0.80 EPS for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.77 by $0.03. The firm had revenue of $70.40 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $69.62 million. First Bancorp had a net margin of 30.19% and a return on equity of 11.83%. As a group, equities analysts predict that First Bancorp will post 3.15 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, October 25th. Stockholders of record on Monday, September 30th will be issued a $0.12 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Friday, September 27th. This represents a $0.48 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 1.31%. First Bancorp’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is currently 15.95%.

In other news, Director Mary Clara Capel sold 900 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Thursday, August 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $36.25, for a total value of $32,625.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now owns 14,012 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $507,935. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. 2.37% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.

A number of hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of FBNC. Advisory Services Network LLC bought a new position in First Bancorp in the 2nd quarter valued at approximately $77,000. Meeder Asset Management Inc. raised its holdings in First Bancorp by 22.7% in the 2nd quarter. Meeder Asset Management Inc. now owns 4,488 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $163,000 after buying an additional 830 shares during the last quarter. Campbell & CO Investment Adviser LLC bought a new position in First Bancorp in the 2nd quarter valued at approximately $200,000. Cubist Systematic Strategies LLC bought a new position in First Bancorp in the 2nd quarter valued at approximately $200,000. Finally, Aperio Group LLC bought a new position in First Bancorp in the 2nd quarter valued at approximately $204,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 66.13% of the company’s stock.

About First Bancorp

First Bancorp operates as the bank holding company for First Bank that provides banking products and services for individuals and small to medium-sized businesses primarily in North Carolina and northeastern South Carolina. It accepts deposit products, such as checking, savings, and money market accounts, as well as time deposits, including certificates of deposit and individual retirement accounts.

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Analyst Recommendations for First Bancorp (NASDAQ:FBNC)

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