Somewhat Positive News Coverage Somewhat Unlikely to Affect First Merchants (FRME) Share Price

Headlines about First Merchants (NASDAQ:FRME) have been trending somewhat positive this week, according to Accern Sentiment. The research group scores the sentiment of press coverage by analyzing more than twenty million news and blog sources in real-time. Accern ranks coverage of public companies on a scale of -1 to 1, with scores closest to one being the most favorable. First Merchants earned a coverage optimism score of 0.21 on Accern’s scale. Accern also assigned press coverage about the bank an impact score of 46.3845993682646 out of 100, meaning that recent press coverage is somewhat unlikely to have an effect on the company’s share price in the next few days.

NASDAQ FRME opened at $43.46 on Tuesday. First Merchants has a 12 month low of $37.09 and a 12 month high of $45.42. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.42, a current ratio of 0.93 and a quick ratio of 0.93. The stock has a market cap of $2,130.23, a PE ratio of 18.03, a P/E/G ratio of 2.08 and a beta of 0.91.

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First Merchants (NASDAQ:FRME) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, January 25th. The bank reported $0.61 EPS for the quarter, meeting the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.61. First Merchants had a net margin of 24.90% and a return on equity of 9.47%. The company had revenue of $97.83 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $98.30 million. analysts expect that First Merchants will post 2.96 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

A number of research analysts have recently commented on FRME shares. ValuEngine raised shares of First Merchants from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Sunday, December 31st. BidaskClub downgraded shares of First Merchants from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Thursday, January 4th. Zacks Investment Research raised shares of First Merchants from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $49.00 price objective for the company in a research note on Friday, January 12th. Keefe, Bruyette & Woods reaffirmed a “buy” rating and set a $52.00 price objective on shares of First Merchants in a research note on Thursday, January 25th. Finally, Piper Jaffray reaffirmed a “hold” rating and set a $48.00 price objective on shares of First Merchants in a research note on Sunday, January 28th. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, two have given a hold rating and two have given a buy rating to the company. First Merchants has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $49.67.

In related news, insider Michael J. Stewart sold 2,219 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, February 26th. The shares were sold at an average price of $42.60, for a total transaction of $94,529.40. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now owns 55,706 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $2,373,075.60. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through the SEC website. In the last three months, insiders have purchased 63 shares of company stock valued at $2,661. Corporate insiders own 1.29% of the company’s stock.

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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.

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