First Bancorp (NASDAQ:FBNC) Cut to “Hold” at BidaskClub

BidaskClub downgraded shares of First Bancorp (NASDAQ:FBNC) from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research note issued to investors on Thursday, December 21st.

A number of other research firms have also issued reports on FBNC. Brean Capital reaffirmed a buy rating on shares of First Bancorp in a report on Tuesday, December 5th. Stephens assumed coverage on First Bancorp in a report on Monday, December 4th. They issued an equal weight rating on the stock. Zacks Investment Research raised First Bancorp from a hold rating to a buy rating and set a $39.00 target price on the stock in a report on Thursday, October 5th. Finally, Piper Jaffray Companies reaffirmed an overweight rating and issued a $37.00 target price on shares of First Bancorp in a report on Thursday, October 5th. Two equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and five have issued a buy rating to the stock. The company presently has an average rating of Buy and an average price target of $39.50.

Shares of First Bancorp (NASDAQ:FBNC) opened at $36.97 on Thursday. The stock has a market capitalization of $1,095.94, a P/E ratio of 21.49, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.20 and a beta of 1.10. The company has a quick ratio of 1.05, a current ratio of 1.05 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.78. First Bancorp has a fifty-two week low of $26.47 and a fifty-two week high of $41.76.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, January 25th. Stockholders of record on Sunday, December 31st will be issued a dividend of $0.08 per share. This represents a $0.32 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 0.87%. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, December 28th. First Bancorp’s payout ratio is presently 18.60%.

In other news, CEO Richard H. Moore acquired 2,755 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, December 20th. The shares were bought at an average price of $36.00 per share, with a total value of $99,180.00. Following the acquisition, the chief executive officer now owns 121,741 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $4,382,676. The acquisition was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. Also, insider Suzanne S. Deferie sold 12,001 shares of First Bancorp stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, December 27th. The stock was sold at an average price of $35.67, for a total value of $428,075.67. Following the sale, the insider now directly owns 113,408 shares in the company, valued at approximately $4,045,263.36. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 1.89% of the stock is currently owned by company insiders.

Several large investors have recently made changes to their positions in FBNC. BNP Paribas Arbitrage SA grew its holdings in shares of First Bancorp by 1,207.2% during the 2nd quarter. BNP Paribas Arbitrage SA now owns 3,268 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $102,000 after purchasing an additional 3,018 shares in the last quarter. SG Americas Securities LLC bought a new position in shares of First Bancorp during the 3rd quarter worth approximately $107,000. IFP Advisors Inc lifted its position in shares of First Bancorp by 250.9% during the 2nd quarter. IFP Advisors Inc now owns 3,513 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $110,000 after buying an additional 2,512 shares during the period. Captrust Financial Advisors bought a new position in shares of First Bancorp during the 2nd quarter worth approximately $146,000. Finally, Legal & General Group Plc lifted its position in shares of First Bancorp by 23.1% during the 2nd quarter. Legal & General Group Plc now owns 5,790 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $180,000 after buying an additional 1,085 shares during the period. 56.51% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

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First Bancorp Company Profile

First Bancorp is the bank holding company for First Bank (the Bank). The Company’s principal activity is the ownership and operation of First Bank. The Bank engages in a range of banking activities, including the acceptance of deposits and the making of loans. The Bank offers credit cards, debit cards, letters of credit, safe deposit box rentals and electronic funds transfer services, including wire transfers.

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