Positive Press Coverage Somewhat Unlikely to Impact First Financial Bancorp (FFBC) Share Price

News articles about First Financial Bancorp (NASDAQ:FFBC) have been trending positive this week, according to Accern Sentiment Analysis. The research group ranks the sentiment of media coverage by analyzing more than twenty million news and blog sources. Accern ranks coverage of public companies on a scale of -1 to 1, with scores nearest to one being the most favorable. First Financial Bancorp earned a daily sentiment score of 0.26 on Accern’s scale. Accern also assigned news stories about the bank an impact score of 45.9729206394287 out of 100, indicating that recent media coverage is somewhat unlikely to have an effect on the stock’s share price in the immediate future.

These are some of the media headlines that may have effected Accern Sentiment Analysis’s scoring:

First Financial Bancorp (NASDAQ:FFBC) traded up $0.55 on Thursday, hitting $28.35. 278,200 shares of the stock traded hands, compared to its average volume of 379,379. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.93, a current ratio of 0.92 and a quick ratio of 0.91. First Financial Bancorp has a 1 year low of $22.80 and a 1 year high of $29.50. The stock has a market capitalization of $1,725.27, a PE ratio of 17.72, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.34 and a beta of 1.19.

First Financial Bancorp (NASDAQ:FFBC) last announced its earnings results on Thursday, January 18th. The bank reported $0.45 EPS for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.40 by $0.05. First Financial Bancorp had a net margin of 26.11% and a return on equity of 11.51%. The business had revenue of $94.00 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $90.05 million. During the same period in the prior year, the company earned $0.38 earnings per share. equities analysts predict that First Financial Bancorp will post 2.08 earnings per share for the current year.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, March 15th. Shareholders of record on Thursday, March 1st will be issued a dividend of $0.19 per share. This is a boost from First Financial Bancorp’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.17. This represents a $0.76 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 2.68%. The ex-dividend date is Wednesday, February 28th. First Financial Bancorp’s dividend payout ratio is currently 42.50%.

FFBC has been the topic of a number of analyst reports. Barclays lifted their target price on shares of First Financial Bancorp from $25.00 to $27.00 and gave the stock an “underweight” rating in a research report on Monday, October 23rd. BidaskClub upgraded shares of First Financial Bancorp from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Wednesday, February 7th. Zacks Investment Research raised shares of First Financial Bancorp from a “hold” rating to a “strong-buy” rating and set a $32.00 target price on the stock in a research note on Tuesday, October 24th. FIG Partners raised shares of First Financial Bancorp from a “market perform” rating to an “outperform” rating and set a $31.00 target price on the stock in a research note on Friday, February 9th. Finally, Royal Bank of Canada reissued a “hold” rating and set a $28.00 price objective on shares of First Financial Bancorp in a research note on Friday, October 20th. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, five have given a hold rating, five have assigned a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. First Financial Bancorp currently has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $29.90.

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About First Financial Bancorp

First Financial Bancorp. (First Financial) is a regional bank holding company. First Financial is engaged in the business of commercial banking and other banking and banking-related activities through its subsidiary, First Financial Bank, National Association (the Bank). The range of banking services provided by First Financial to individuals and businesses include commercial lending, real estate lending and consumer financing.

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