First Bancorp (NASDAQ:FBNC) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note issued on Tuesday.

According to Zacks, “First Bancorp is a one-bank holding company. The principal activity of the Company is the ownership and operation of First Bank. They also own and operate two nonbank subsidiaries, Montgomery Data Services, Inc. and First Bancorp Financial Services, Inc. “

A number of other brokerages also recently commented on FBNC. Brean Capital reissued a “buy” rating on shares of First Bancorp in a research report on Tuesday, December 5th. Stephens began coverage on First Bancorp in a research report on Monday, December 4th. They set an “equal weight” rating for the company. Keefe, Bruyette & Woods reissued a “buy” rating and set a $41.00 price objective on shares of First Bancorp in a research report on Friday. BidaskClub downgraded First Bancorp from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Thursday, December 21st. Finally, Piper Jaffray Companies reissued an “overweight” rating and set a $37.00 price objective on shares of First Bancorp in a research report on Thursday, October 5th. Three analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and four have given a buy rating to the company. The stock has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $38.00.

Shares of First Bancorp (NASDAQ FBNC) traded down $0.54 during trading on Tuesday, hitting $35.72. The stock had a trading volume of 125,269 shares, compared to its average volume of 96,637. First Bancorp has a 1-year low of $26.47 and a 1-year high of $41.76. The firm has a market capitalization of $1,060.00, a P/E ratio of 20.77, a PEG ratio of 1.43 and a beta of 1.08. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.78, a quick ratio of 1.05 and a current ratio of 1.05.

In related news, CEO Richard H. Moore acquired 2,755 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, December 20th. The stock was acquired at an average cost of $36.00 per share, with a total value of $99,180.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief executive officer now owns 121,741 shares in the company, valued at approximately $4,382,676. The purchase was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is accessible through this link. Insiders own 2.37% of the company’s stock.

A number of institutional investors and hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in FBNC. Russell Investments Group Ltd. boosted its holdings in First Bancorp by 77.6% in the second quarter. Russell Investments Group Ltd. now owns 47,796 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $1,494,000 after purchasing an additional 20,888 shares in the last quarter. Schwab Charles Investment Management Inc. boosted its holdings in First Bancorp by 24.3% in the second quarter. Schwab Charles Investment Management Inc. now owns 98,453 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $3,078,000 after purchasing an additional 19,232 shares in the last quarter. First Trust Advisors LP boosted its holdings in First Bancorp by 2.6% in the second quarter. First Trust Advisors LP now owns 58,291 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $1,822,000 after purchasing an additional 1,466 shares in the last quarter. Rhumbline Advisers boosted its holdings in First Bancorp by 17.3% in the second quarter. Rhumbline Advisers now owns 30,568 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $956,000 after purchasing an additional 4,515 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Legal & General Group Plc boosted its holdings in First Bancorp by 23.1% in the second quarter. Legal & General Group Plc now owns 5,790 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $180,000 after purchasing an additional 1,085 shares in the last quarter. 56.51% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

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About First Bancorp

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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