BidaskClub Lowers First Foundation (NASDAQ:FFWM) to Sell

BidaskClub downgraded shares of First Foundation (NASDAQ:FFWM) from a hold rating to a sell rating in a report published on Friday, BidAskClub reports.

Several other equities research analysts have also commented on the stock. B. Riley raised their price target on shares of First Foundation from $19.00 to $21.00 and gave the company a buy rating in a research note on Thursday, January 9th. ValuEngine lowered shares of First Foundation from a sell rating to a strong sell rating in a research note on Friday, December 13th. Finally, Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of First Foundation from a hold rating to a buy rating and set a $19.00 price target on the stock in a research note on Tuesday, January 7th.

Shares of NASDAQ:FFWM opened at $16.84 on Friday. The firm’s 50 day moving average is $16.90 and its two-hundred day moving average is $15.32. First Foundation has a 52 week low of $12.91 and a 52 week high of $17.64. The firm has a market capitalization of $751.52 million, a P/E ratio of 14.39 and a beta of 0.87. The company has a current ratio of 0.98, a quick ratio of 0.88 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.86.

First Foundation (NASDAQ:FFWM) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, October 23rd. The bank reported $0.39 EPS for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.37 by $0.02. First Foundation had a net margin of 19.41% and a return on equity of 9.52%. The company had revenue of $57.11 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $56.83 million. Analysts predict that First Foundation will post 1.23 EPS for the current year.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Monday, December 16th. Shareholders of record on Monday, December 2nd were paid a $0.05 dividend. The ex-dividend date was Friday, November 29th. This represents a $0.20 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.19%. First Foundation’s payout ratio is currently 17.09%.

In other news, Chairman Ulrich E. Keller, Jr. sold 30,600 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, December 4th. The shares were sold at an average price of $16.27, for a total value of $497,862.00. Also, CFO John Michel sold 5,000 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, October 29th. The shares were sold at an average price of $15.74, for a total transaction of $78,700.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief financial officer now owns 37,000 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $582,380. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold 82,937 shares of company stock valued at $1,356,902 over the last quarter. Insiders own 13.90% of the company’s stock.

Several institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of the company. California State Teachers Retirement System boosted its holdings in shares of First Foundation by 1.2% in the third quarter. California State Teachers Retirement System now owns 60,925 shares of the bank’s stock valued at $931,000 after acquiring an additional 728 shares in the last quarter. Citadel Advisors LLC boosted its holdings in shares of First Foundation by 1.9% in the second quarter. Citadel Advisors LLC now owns 41,042 shares of the bank’s stock valued at $551,000 after acquiring an additional 758 shares in the last quarter. JPMorgan Chase & Co. boosted its holdings in shares of First Foundation by 15.5% in the second quarter. JPMorgan Chase & Co. now owns 10,739 shares of the bank’s stock valued at $143,000 after acquiring an additional 1,444 shares in the last quarter. FLC Capital Advisors boosted its holdings in shares of First Foundation by 1.6% in the fourth quarter. FLC Capital Advisors now owns 122,146 shares of the bank’s stock valued at $2,125,000 after acquiring an additional 1,896 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Royal Bank of Canada boosted its holdings in shares of First Foundation by 565.5% in the second quarter. Royal Bank of Canada now owns 3,088 shares of the bank’s stock valued at $42,000 after acquiring an additional 2,624 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 59.20% of the company’s stock.

First Foundation Company Profile

First Foundation Inc, through its subsidiaries, provides financial services to individuals, businesses, and other organizations in the United States. It operates in two segments, Banking; and Investment Management and Wealth Planning. The company offers a range of bank deposit products, including personal and business checking accounts, savings accounts, interest-bearing negotiable order of withdrawal accounts, money market accounts, and time certificates of deposit; and loan products consisting of multifamily and single family residential real estate loans, commercial real estate loans, and commercial term loans and lines of credit, as well as consumer loans, such as personal installment loans and lines of credit, and home equity lines of credit.

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