Meridian Bank (NASDAQ:MRBK) has received an average broker rating score of 1.33 (Strong Buy) from the three analysts that provide coverage for the stock, Zacks Investment Research reports. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a buy recommendation and two have assigned a strong buy recommendation to the company.

Brokers have set a 1-year consensus price objective of $18.33 for the company and are anticipating that the company will post $0.18 earnings per share for the current quarter, according to Zacks. Zacks has also given Meridian Bank an industry rank of 220 out of 254 based on the ratings given to its competitors.

MRBK has been the topic of several recent research reports. Zacks Investment Research upgraded Meridian Bank from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Monday, May 4th. ValuEngine upgraded Meridian Bank from a “strong sell” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Wednesday, May 6th. Finally, DA Davidson dropped their price objective on Meridian Bank from $19.00 to $18.00 and set a “buy” rating on the stock in a research note on Thursday, April 30th.

In other news, Director Robert T. Holland bought 1,800 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, May 5th. The shares were acquired at an average cost of $16.54 per share, with a total value of $29,772.00. Also, CEO Christopher J. Annas bought 3,360 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, May 1st. The shares were purchased at an average cost of $15.50 per share, for a total transaction of $52,080.00. Insiders own 12.69% of the company’s stock.

A number of hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. First Manhattan Co. grew its position in Meridian Bank by 2.9% during the first quarter. First Manhattan Co. now owns 147,949 shares of the company’s stock worth $2,023,000 after buying an additional 4,149 shares in the last quarter. Fourthstone LLC raised its holdings in shares of Meridian Bank by 1.0% in the 1st quarter. Fourthstone LLC now owns 101,739 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,392,000 after buying an additional 1,039 shares in the last quarter. Ancora Advisors LLC lifted its position in shares of Meridian Bank by 3.0% during the 4th quarter. Ancora Advisors LLC now owns 23,309 shares of the company’s stock worth $471,000 after buying an additional 684 shares during the period. BlackRock Inc. boosted its stake in Meridian Bank by 149.4% in the 1st quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 17,021 shares of the company’s stock valued at $233,000 after buying an additional 10,197 shares in the last quarter. Finally, State Street Corp bought a new stake in Meridian Bank in the first quarter valued at $141,000. 41.14% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

Shares of Meridian Bank stock remained flat at $$16.13 during midday trading on Friday. The stock had a trading volume of 56 shares, compared to its average volume of 8,368. Meridian Bank has a 1-year low of $10.68 and a 1-year high of $20.89. The company’s fifty day simple moving average is $14.49 and its 200-day simple moving average is $17.61. The stock has a market cap of $101.11 million, a price-to-earnings ratio of 9.43 and a beta of 0.62.

Meridian Bank (NASDAQ:MRBK) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Monday, April 27th. The company reported $0.39 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.23 by $0.16. The firm had revenue of $20.02 million for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $17.11 million. On average, equities analysts predict that Meridian Bank will post 1.37 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

About Meridian Bank

Meridian Corporation operates as the bank holding for Meridian Bank that provides commercial banking products and services for small and middle market businesses primarily in southeast Pennsylvania, Delaware, and southern New Jersey. The company offers non-interest and interest checking deposits and time deposits, as well as money market, and savings accounts; and commercial and industrial loans, commercial real estate loans, and consumer and home equity loans, as well as business lines of credit, term loans, small business lending, lease financing, and shared national credits.

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