Todays Report: The WashingtonFirst Bankshares Inc. (WFBI) Raised to “Strong-Buy” at The Zacks Investment Research

The WashingtonFirst Bankshares Inc. (WFBI) Raised to “Strong-Buy” at The Zacks Investment Research

Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of WashingtonFirst Bankshares Inc. (NASDAQ:WFBI) from a hold rating to a strong-buy rating in a research note issued to investors on Wednesday. The firm currently has $28.00 price objective on the stock.

According to Zacks, “WashingtonFirst Bankshares, Inc. operates as a bank holding company. The Company’s banking subsidiary offers various deposit products, including business and personal checking accounts, NOW accounts, tiered savings and money market accounts, time deposit accounts, and individual retirement accounts. It also offers commercial loans, commercial real estate loans, commercial and residential real estate construction loans, residential mortgage loans, home equity loans, and consumer loans. The company provides cash management services, such as electronic banking, sweep accounts, lockbox and account reconciliation, merchant card depository, safe deposit boxes, and automated clearing house origination services, as well as after hour depository, ATMs, remote deposit capture, and courier services. WashingtonFirst Bankshares, Inc. is based in Reston, Virginia. “

Other equities research analysts have also issued research reports about the company. Citigroup Inc. lowered WashingtonFirst Bankshares to a market perform rating in a research report on Monday, October 24th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Raymond James Financial Inc. lowered WashingtonFirst Bankshares from an outperform rating to a market perform rating in a research report on Monday, October 24th. Finally, Keefe, Bruyette & Woods downgraded WashingtonFirst Bankshares from an outperform rating to a market perform rating in a research note on Monday, October 24th.

WashingtonFirst Bankshares (NASDAQ:WFBI) opened at 24.55 on Wednesday. The company has a 50 day moving average price of $24.40 and a 200-day moving average price of $23.06. The firm has a market capitalization of $300.91 million, a price-to-earnings ratio of 17.79 and a beta of 0.08. WashingtonFirst Bankshares has a 52 week low of $18.53 and a 52 week high of $25.46.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Monday, October 3rd. Shareholders of record on Monday, September 12th were paid a $0.06 dividend. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, September 8th. This represents a $0.24 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 0.98%. WashingtonFirst Bankshares’s dividend payout ratio is 17.39%.

In related news, Director Caren D. Merrick purchased 4,065 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Monday, August 22nd. The stock was purchased at an average cost of $23.98 per share, for a total transaction of $97,478.70. Following the completion of the purchase, the director now directly owns 2,960 shares in the company, valued at $70,980.80. The acquisition was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available through this hyperlink. 22.86% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

A number of hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. UBS Group AG acquired a new position in shares of WashingtonFirst Bankshares during the first quarter valued at approximately $715,000. Geode Capital Management LLC increased its position in shares of WashingtonFirst Bankshares by 21.3% in the first quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC now owns 12,040 shares of the company’s stock valued at $263,000 after buying an additional 2,118 shares in the last quarter. Wellington Management Group LLP increased its position in shares of WashingtonFirst Bankshares by 2.8% in the first quarter. Wellington Management Group LLP now owns 913,567 shares of the company’s stock valued at $19,961,000 after buying an additional 24,500 shares in the last quarter. Creative Planning increased its position in shares of WashingtonFirst Bankshares by 4.2% in the second quarter. Creative Planning now owns 95,397 shares of the company’s stock valued at $2,062,000 after buying an additional 3,834 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Bank of New York Mellon Corp acquired a new position in shares of WashingtonFirst Bankshares during the second quarter valued at approximately $334,000. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 48.64% of the company’s stock.

About WashingtonFirst Bankshares

WashingtonFirst Bankshares, Inc is a bank holding company. The Company, through its subsidiary, WashingtonFirst Bank (the Bank), operates approximately 20 banking offices throughout the Washington, District of Columbia (DC) metropolitan area. The Company’s segments include traditional commercial banking, a mortgage banking business and a wealth management business.

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