First Bancshares (FBMS) Upgraded to “Hold” at Zacks Investment Research

First Bancshares (NASDAQ:FBMS) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report issued on Tuesday.

According to Zacks, “The FIRST BANCSHARES, INC., headquartered in Hattiesburg, Mississippi, is the parent company of The First, A National Banking Association. The First is now ranked in the top twenty banks by asset size in Mississippi. The First has operations in Hattiesburg, Laurel, Purvis, Picayune, Pascagoula, Bay St. Louis, Wiggins and Gulfport, Mississippi. The Company and its subsidiary bank engage in a general commercial and retail banking business characterized by personalized service and local decision-making, emphasizing the banking needs of small to medium-sized businesses, professional concerns and individuals. The products and services offered by the bank include deposit services, loan products, mortgage loan divisions and other services. “

Several other research firms also recently weighed in on FBMS. Stephens set a $39.00 price objective on First Bancshares and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Wednesday, November 7th. BidaskClub raised First Bancshares from a “strong sell” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Thursday, January 31st.

Shares of FBMS stock traded down $0.64 during trading hours on Tuesday, hitting $31.61. The stock had a trading volume of 28,200 shares, compared to its average volume of 23,937. The company has a market capitalization of $484.76 million, a P/E ratio of 13.80 and a beta of 0.29. First Bancshares has a twelve month low of $27.84 and a twelve month high of $43.53. The company has a current ratio of 0.92, a quick ratio of 0.91 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.56.

First Bancshares (NASDAQ:FBMS) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Monday, January 28th. The bank reported $0.64 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.62 by $0.02. The business had revenue of $31.67 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $29.83 million. First Bancshares had a return on equity of 11.11% and a net margin of 17.61%. Research analysts predict that First Bancshares will post 2.82 EPS for the current fiscal year.

Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of the stock. Great West Life Assurance Co. Can lifted its holdings in shares of First Bancshares by 16,750.0% during the fourth quarter. Great West Life Assurance Co. Can now owns 2,696 shares of the bank’s stock worth $78,000 after purchasing an additional 2,680 shares during the period. Legal & General Group Plc lifted its holdings in shares of First Bancshares by 40.5% during the fourth quarter. Legal & General Group Plc now owns 2,603 shares of the bank’s stock worth $79,000 after purchasing an additional 750 shares during the period. Metropolitan Life Insurance Co. NY lifted its holdings in shares of First Bancshares by 284.2% during the fourth quarter. Metropolitan Life Insurance Co. NY now owns 3,623 shares of the bank’s stock worth $110,000 after purchasing an additional 2,680 shares during the period. IFP Advisors Inc acquired a new stake in shares of First Bancshares during the third quarter worth $114,000. Finally, Raymond James & Associates acquired a new stake in shares of First Bancshares during the fourth quarter worth $201,000. 58.54% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

About First Bancshares

The First Bancshares, Inc operates as the holding company for The First, A National Banking Association that provides general commercial and retail banking services. The company operates through three segments: Commercial/Retail Bank, Mortgage Banking Division, and Holding Company. It offers deposit services, including checking, NOW, and savings accounts; other time deposits, such as daily money market accounts and longer-term certificates of deposit; and individual retirement accounts.

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