First Financial Bancorp (Nasdaq:FFBC) hit a new 52-week high Friday as it is currently trading at $18.33, above its previous 52-week high of $18.25 with 281,535 shares traded as of 3:05 p.m. ET. Average volume has been 215,500 shares over the past 30 days.
NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- First Financial Bancorp (Nasdaq: FFBC) hit a new 52-week high Friday as it is currently trading at $18.33, above its previous 52-week high of $18.25 with 281,535 shares traded as of 3:05 p.m. ET. Average volume has been 215,500 shares over the past 30 days. First Financial has a market cap of $1.04 billion and is part of the financial sector and banking industry. Shares are up 7.7% year to date as of the close of trading on Thursday. First Financial Bancorp. operates as the holding company for First Financial Bank, National Association that provides commercial banking, and other banking and banking-related services. The company has a P/E ratio of 15.7, below the average banking industry P/E ratio of 16.6 and below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7.
TheStreet Ratings rates First Financial as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its impressive record of earnings per share growth, expanding profit margins, notable return on equity and increase in net income. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company is trading at a premium valuation based on our review of its current price compared to such things as earnings and book value. You can view the full First Financial Ratings Report. See all 52-week high stocks or get investment ideas from our investment research center.
Investors in First Financial Bancorp saw new options begin trading this week, for the May 2015 expiration. One of the key data points that goes into the price an option buyer is willing to pay, is the time value, so with 144 days until expiration the newly trading contracts represent a potential opportunity for sellers of puts or calls to achieve a higher premium than would be available for the contracts with a closer expiration.