First BanCorp (FBP) Flagged As Strong On High Volume

Editor's Note: Any reference to TheStreet Ratings and its underlying recommendation does not reflect the opinion of TheStreet, Inc. or any of its contributors including Jim Cramer or Stephanie Link.

Trade-Ideas LLC identified First BanCorp ( FBP) as a strong on high relative volume candidate. In addition to specific proprietary factors, Trade-Ideas identified First BanCorp as such a stock due to the following factors:

  • FBP has an average dollar-volume (as measured by average daily share volume multiplied by share price) of $2.8 million.
  • FBP has traded 52,156 shares today.
  • FBP is trading at 3.20 times the normal volume for the stock at this time of day.
  • FBP is trading at a new high 4.13% above yesterday's close.

'Strong on High Relative Volume' stocks are worth watching because major volume moves tend to indicate underlying activity such as M&A events, material stock news, analyst upgrades, insider buying, buying from 'superinvestors,' or that hedge funds and momentum traders are piling into a stock ahead of a catalyst. Regardless of the impetus behind the price and volume action, when a stock moves with strength and volume it can indicate the start of a new trend on which early investors can capitalize. In the event of a well-timed trading opportunity, combining technical indicators with fundamental trends and a disciplined trading methodology should help you take the first steps towards investment success.

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More details on FBP:

First BanCorp. operates as the bank holding company for FirstBank Puerto Rico that provides a range of financial products and services to retail, commercial, and institutional clients. FBP has a PE ratio of 15.1. Currently there are 2 analysts that rate First BanCorp a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 2 rate it a hold.

The average volume for First BanCorp has been 688,100 shares per day over the past 30 days. First BanCorp has a market cap of $1.1 billion and is part of the financial sector and banking industry. The stock has a beta of 2.24 and a short float of 4.4% with 9.33 days to cover. Shares are down 18.3% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Tuesday.

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TheStreetRatings.com Analysis:

TheStreet Quant Ratings rates First BanCorp as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its compelling growth in net income, attractive valuation levels, good cash flow from operations, expanding profit margins and impressive record of earnings per share growth. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had lackluster performance in the stock itself.

Highlights from the ratings report include:
  • The net income growth from the same quarter one year ago has significantly exceeded that of the S&P 500 and the Commercial Banks industry. The net income increased by 117.3% when compared to the same quarter one year prior, rising from -$122.58 million to $21.23 million.
  • Net operating cash flow has increased to $76.64 million or 35.66% when compared to the same quarter last year. In addition, FIRST BANCORP P R has also vastly surpassed the industry average cash flow growth rate of -97.19%.
  • The gross profit margin for FIRST BANCORP P R is rather high; currently it is at 68.31%. It has increased significantly from the same period last year. Regardless of the strong results of the gross profit margin, the net profit margin of 12.17% trails the industry average.
  • FIRST BANCORP P R reported significant earnings per share improvement in the most recent quarter compared to the same quarter a year ago. This company has reported somewhat volatile earnings recently. But, we feel it is poised for EPS growth in the coming year. During the past fiscal year, FIRST BANCORP P R swung to a loss, reporting -$0.80 versus $0.15 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($0.44 versus -$0.80).

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Weak On High Volume: First BanCorp (FBP)

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