The Manufacturers Life Insurance Company Raises Stake in Business First Bancshares, Inc. (NASDAQ:BFST)

The Manufacturers Life Insurance Company lifted its position in shares of Business First Bancshares, Inc. (NASDAQ:BFSTFree Report) by 0.7% in the fourth quarter, according to its most recent 13F filing with the SEC. The firm owned 494,253 shares of the company’s stock after purchasing an additional 3,358 shares during the quarter. The Manufacturers Life Insurance Company owned about 1.95% of Business First Bancshares worth $12,183,000 as of its most recent filing with the SEC.

A number of other institutional investors have also modified their holdings of BFST. KG&L Capital Management LLC purchased a new position in Business First Bancshares in the 4th quarter worth approximately $218,000. Vanguard Group Inc. raised its position in shares of Business First Bancshares by 1.3% in the 3rd quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 1,276,408 shares of the company’s stock valued at $23,945,000 after purchasing an additional 16,094 shares in the last quarter. Kennedy Capital Management LLC raised its position in shares of Business First Bancshares by 25.1% in the 3rd quarter. Kennedy Capital Management LLC now owns 295,969 shares of the company’s stock valued at $5,552,000 after purchasing an additional 59,297 shares in the last quarter. Panagora Asset Management Inc. acquired a new position in shares of Business First Bancshares in the 4th quarter valued at approximately $216,000. Finally, ClariVest Asset Management LLC acquired a new stake in shares of Business First Bancshares during the 3rd quarter valued at approximately $743,000. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 47.35% of the company’s stock.

Insiders Place Their Bets

In related news, Director Rick D. Day bought 1,800 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Tuesday, April 30th. The shares were purchased at an average cost of $20.30 per share, with a total value of $36,540.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now directly owns 262,785 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $5,334,535.50. The acquisition was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this link. 6.45% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

Business First Bancshares Stock Performance

BFST stock opened at $20.27 on Tuesday. The company has a current ratio of 0.98, a quick ratio of 0.98 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.72. The firm has a market cap of $516.89 million, a P/E ratio of 7.98 and a beta of 0.97. Business First Bancshares, Inc. has a 12-month low of $14.39 and a 12-month high of $25.57. The stock’s 50 day simple moving average is $20.96 and its 200 day simple moving average is $21.96.

Business First Bancshares (NASDAQ:BFSTGet Free Report) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, April 25th. The company reported $0.50 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $0.57 by ($0.07). The firm had revenue of $60.92 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $61.93 million. Business First Bancshares had a net margin of 17.08% and a return on equity of 12.80%. As a group, equities research analysts predict that Business First Bancshares, Inc. will post 2.02 EPS for the current year.

Business First Bancshares Dividend Announcement

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, May 31st. Investors of record on Wednesday, May 15th were given a dividend of $0.14 per share. This represents a $0.56 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 2.76%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Tuesday, May 14th. Business First Bancshares’s dividend payout ratio is currently 22.05%.

About Business First Bancshares

(Free Report)

Business First Bancshares, Inc operates as the bank holding company for b1BANK that provides various banking products and services in Louisiana and Texas. It offers various deposit products and services, including checking, demand, money market, time, and savings accounts; and certificates of deposits, remote deposit capture, and direct deposit services.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Business First Bancshares (NASDAQ:BFST)

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