First Merchants Co. (NASDAQ:FRME) Expected to Post Quarterly Sales of $131.07 Million

Brokerages predict that First Merchants Co. (NASDAQ:FRMEGet Rating) will announce sales of $131.07 million for the current quarter, Zacks reports. Three analysts have issued estimates for First Merchants’ earnings, with the highest sales estimate coming in at $132.00 million and the lowest estimate coming in at $130.10 million. First Merchants posted sales of $124.52 million in the same quarter last year, which would indicate a positive year over year growth rate of 5.3%. The business is expected to report its next quarterly earnings results before the market opens on Monday, January 1st.

On average, analysts expect that First Merchants will report full year sales of $598.63 million for the current fiscal year, with estimates ranging from $587.20 million to $615.70 million. For the next fiscal year, analysts forecast that the firm will report sales of $667.00 million, with estimates ranging from $656.00 million to $682.00 million. Zacks’ sales calculations are an average based on a survey of research analysts that that provide coverage for First Merchants.

First Merchants (NASDAQ:FRMEGet Rating) last announced its earnings results on Thursday, January 27th. The bank reported $0.89 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.94 by ($0.05). First Merchants had a net margin of 36.97% and a return on equity of 11.02%. The company had revenue of $127.12 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $134.63 million. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company earned $0.83 EPS.

A number of equities analysts have recently weighed in on FRME shares. StockNews.com started coverage on First Merchants in a report on Thursday, March 31st. They issued a “hold” rating on the stock. Zacks Investment Research upgraded First Merchants from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $46.00 price objective on the stock in a report on Monday, April 4th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a hold rating and four have given a buy rating to the stock. According to MarketBeat, First Merchants has an average rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $47.00.

A number of hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in the business. Nordea Investment Management AB grew its holdings in First Merchants by 45.3% during the first quarter. Nordea Investment Management AB now owns 179,852 shares of the bank’s stock valued at $7,561,000 after purchasing an additional 56,105 shares during the last quarter. Indiana Trust & Investment Management CO acquired a new position in First Merchants during the first quarter valued at approximately $354,000. Norges Bank bought a new stake in shares of First Merchants in the fourth quarter valued at approximately $22,369,000. Compass Financial Advisors LLC bought a new stake in shares of First Merchants in the fourth quarter valued at approximately $217,000. Finally, Barclays PLC boosted its position in shares of First Merchants by 99.3% in the fourth quarter. Barclays PLC now owns 103,122 shares of the bank’s stock valued at $4,320,000 after acquiring an additional 51,388 shares during the period. Institutional investors own 71.98% of the company’s stock.

FRME stock opened at $39.85 on Friday. The company has a current ratio of 0.76, a quick ratio of 0.75 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.24. First Merchants has a one year low of $37.67 and a one year high of $48.70. The firm has a market capitalization of $2.14 billion, a PE ratio of 10.46 and a beta of 1.10. The firm has a 50-day moving average of $42.45 and a two-hundred day moving average of $42.48.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, March 18th. Shareholders of record on Friday, March 4th were issued a dividend of $0.29 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Thursday, March 3rd. This represents a $1.16 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.91%. First Merchants’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 30.45%.

First Merchants Company Profile (Get Rating)

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 public finance. The company also offers personal and corporate trust; brokerage and private wealth management; and letters of credit, repurchase agreements, and other corporate services.

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

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