First Merchants Co. (FRME) Expected to Post Quarterly Sales of $116.30 Million

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Analysts expect First Merchants Co. (NASDAQ:FRME) to post sales of $116.30 million for the current fiscal quarter, according to Zacks Investment Research. Four analysts have issued estimates for First Merchants’ earnings, with the lowest sales estimate coming in at $114.00 million and the highest estimate coming in at $118.00 million. First Merchants reported sales of $102.76 million during the same quarter last year, which would suggest a positive year-over-year growth rate of 13.2%. The business is scheduled to announce its next earnings report on Wednesday, July 24th.

On average, analysts expect that First Merchants will report full-year sales of $472.75 million for the current financial year, with estimates ranging from $467.60 million to $481.00 million. For the next fiscal year, analysts expect that the business will report sales of $520.33 million, with estimates ranging from $515.30 million to $524.20 million. Zacks Investment Research’s sales averages are a mean average based on a survey of analysts that that provide coverage for First Merchants.

First Merchants (NASDAQ:FRME) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, April 25th. The bank reported $0.78 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $0.80 by ($0.02). The company had revenue of $103.58 million during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $107.28 million. First Merchants had a return on equity of 11.59% and a net margin of 32.34%.

FRME has been the topic of several research analyst reports. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of First Merchants from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $44.00 price objective on the stock in a research note on Monday, March 11th. BidaskClub upgraded shares of First Merchants from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Wednesday, March 6th. Piper Jaffray Companies set a $44.00 price objective on shares of First Merchants and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research note on Wednesday, April 10th. FIG Partners reiterated a “market-perform” rating on shares of First Merchants in a research note on Friday, February 1st. Finally, Raymond James started coverage on shares of First Merchants in a research note on Monday, April 8th. They set an “outperform” rating and a $42.00 price target on the stock. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, three have issued a hold rating and three have given a buy rating to the stock. The company has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $44.25.

Shares of First Merchants stock traded up $0.24 during midday trading on Friday, hitting $35.77. The company had a trading volume of 182,018 shares, compared to its average volume of 175,036. The company has a market cap of $1.78 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 11.11, a PEG ratio of 1.52 and a beta of 0.94. The company has a current ratio of 0.91, a quick ratio of 0.92 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.33. First Merchants has a 1-year low of $32.49 and a 1-year high of $50.44.

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, June 21st. Shareholders of record on Monday, May 20th will be paid a dividend of $0.26 per share. The ex-dividend date is Friday, May 17th. This represents a $1.04 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 2.91%. This is an increase from First Merchants’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.22. First Merchants’s payout ratio is currently 27.33%.

Institutional investors and hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of the business. Strs Ohio bought a new position in shares of First Merchants during the first quarter valued at $25,000. Resources Investment Advisors Inc. bought a new position in shares of First Merchants during the fourth quarter valued at $29,000. Pearl River Capital LLC bought a new position in shares of First Merchants during the fourth quarter valued at $42,000. Huntington National Bank lifted its holdings in shares of First Merchants by 40.6% during the fourth quarter. Huntington National Bank now owns 1,353 shares of the bank’s stock valued at $46,000 after acquiring an additional 391 shares during the period. Finally, Bessemer Group Inc. bought a new position in shares of First Merchants during the fourth quarter valued at $67,000. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 71.95% of the company’s stock.

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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Earnings History and Estimates for First Merchants (NASDAQ:FRME)

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