First Business Financial Services, Inc. (NASDAQ:FBIZ) Short Interest Up 5.9% in August

First Business Financial Services, Inc. (NASDAQ: FBIZ – Get Rating) benefited from significant growth in short-term interest during August. As of August 31, there was short interest totaling 145,900 shares, a growth of 5.9% from the total of 137,800 shares as of August 15. Based on an average trading volume of 47,000 shares, the short interest ratio is currently 3.1 days. Currently, 1.8% of the stock’s shares are sold short.

First-party financial services trade up 0.9%

The NASDAQ FBIZ traded down $0.31 on Tuesday, hitting $34.67. 1,278 shares of the company were traded, against an average volume of 20,032. The company’s fifty-day moving average price is $33.41 and its 200-day moving average price is $33.15. The stock has a market capitalization of $294.00 million, a P/E ratio of 7.83 and a beta of 0.74. The company has a current ratio of 1.28, a quick ratio of 1.28 and a debt ratio of 2.51. First Business Financial Services has a fifty-two week minimum of $26.57 and a fifty-two week maximum of $36.58.

First Business Financial Services (NASDAQ:FBIZ – Get Rating) last released quarterly earnings data on Thursday, July 28. The financial services provider reported earnings per share of $1.29 for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimate of $0.91 by $0.38. The company posted revenue of $30.53 million for the quarter, versus analyst estimates of $29.15 million. First Business Financial Services achieved a return on equity of 16.22% and a net margin of 29.50%. Analysts expect First Business Financial Services to post earnings per share of 4.33 for the current year.

First Business Financial Services cuts its dividend

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Thursday, August 18. Shareholders of record on Monday August 8 received a dividend of $0.1975. The ex-dividend date was Friday, August 5. This represents a dividend of $0.79 on an annualized basis and a yield of 2.28%. First Business Financial Services’ dividend payout ratio is currently 18.00%.

Insider Trading at First Business Financial Services

Separately, manager Gerald L. Kilcoyne purchased 5,000 shares in a trade dated Thursday, August 4. The shares were purchased at an average cost of $32.99 per share, with a total value of $164,950.00. Following the completion of the purchase, the administrator now directly owns 57,501 shares of the company, valued at approximately $1,896,957.99. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available on the SEC’s website. Company insiders own 6.10% of the company’s shares.

Institutional investors weigh in on First Business Financial Services

Institutional investors and hedge funds have recently increased or reduced their stakes in the company. Banc Funds Co. LLC increased its position in First Business Financial Services by 16.9% in the first quarter. Banc Funds Co. LLC now owns 514,871 shares of the financial services provider valued at $16,893,000 after purchasing an additional 74,261 shares during the period. Cutler Capital Management LLC increased its position in First Business Financial Services by 1.2% in the first quarter. Cutler Capital Management LLC now owns 132,600 shares of the financial services provider valued at $4,351,000 after purchasing an additional 1,600 shares during the period. Uncommon Cents Investing LLC increased its equity stake in First Business Financial Services by 22.6% in Q1. Uncommon Cents Investing LLC now owns 29,195 shares of the financial services provider valued at $958,000 after purchasing an additional 5,390 shares during the period. Acadian Asset Management LLC increased its equity stake in First Business Financial Services by 21.2% in Q1. Acadian Asset Management LLC now owns 67,789 shares of the financial services provider valued at $2,222,000 after purchasing an additional 11,836 shares during the period. Finally, EAM Investors LLC purchased a new equity stake in First Business Financial Services in Q1 worth $1,260,000. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 66.33% of the company’s shares.

About First Business Financial Services

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First Business Financial Services, Inc. operates as a banking holding company for First Business Bank which provides commercial banking products and services to small and medium-sized businesses, business owners, executives, professionals and high net worth individuals. The Company offers deposit products, such as non-interest bearing transaction accounts, interest bearing transaction accounts, money market accounts, term deposits and certificates of deposit, as well as credit cards.

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