Southern First Bancshares Inc. (SFST) Lifted to “Buy” at Zacks Investment Research

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Southern First Bancshares Inc. (NASDAQ:SFST) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a note issued to investors on Wednesday. The brokerage currently has a $32.00 price objective on the stock. Zacks Investment Research’s price target points to a potential upside of 10.84% from the company’s current price.
According to Zacks, “Greenville First Bancshares, Inc. is the holding company for Greenville First Bank, N.A., a national banking association chartered under the laws of the United States. “
Separately, Keefe, Bruyette & Woods boosted their target price on Southern First Bancshares from $28.00 to $30.00 and gave the stock an “outperform” rating in a research report on Wednesday, July 27th.

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Southern First Bancshares (NASDAQ:SFST) opened at 28.87 on Wednesday. The company has a market capitalization of $183.47 million, a PE ratio of 16.13 and a beta of 0.63. The company has a 50 day moving average price of $27.79 and a 200-day moving average price of $25.96. Southern First Bancshares has a one year low of $19.01 and a one year high of $31.11.
Southern First Bancshares (NASDAQ:SFST) last released its earnings results on Tuesday, July 26th. The company reported $0.49 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.45 by $0.04. Southern First Bancshares had a return on equity of 12.33% and a net margin of 20.30%. Analysts expect that Southern First Bancshares will post $1.89 EPS for the current fiscal year.
In other news, President F Justin Strickland sold 1,400 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, August 8th. The stock was sold at an average price of $27.00, for a total transaction of $37,800.00. Following the transaction, the president now directly owns 56,158 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $1,516,266. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this link. Also, Director Fred Gilmer, Jr. sold 2,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, August 18th. The shares were sold at an average price of $27.25, for a total value of $54,500.00. Following the transaction, the director now directly owns 54,751 shares in the company, valued at $1,491,964.75. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 14.50% of the stock is owned by company insiders.
Institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. Acrospire Investment Management LLC boosted its position in Southern First Bancshares by 30.1% in the second quarter. Acrospire Investment Management LLC now owns 4,229 shares of the company’s stock valued at $102,000 after buying an additional 978 shares during the period. Nationwide Fund Advisors acquired a new position in Southern First Bancshares during the second quarter valued at about $144,000. Livingston Group Asset Management CO operating as Southport Capital Management acquired a new position in Southern First Bancshares during the second quarter valued at about $159,000. Royal Bank of Canada boosted its position in Southern First Bancshares by 10.2% in the second quarter. Royal Bank of Canada now owns 8,660 shares of the company’s stock valued at $209,000 after buying an additional 800 shares during the period. Finally, Schwab Charles Investment Management Inc. acquired a new position in Southern First Bancshares during the second quarter valued at about $213,000. 63.19% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.
Southern First Bancshares Company Profile
Southern First Bancshares, Inc is a bank holding company that owns the capital stock of Southern First Bank (the Bank), a South Carolina state bank, and all of the stock of Greenville First Statutory Trust I and II (the Trusts). The Bank is a commercial bank with approximately nine retail offices located in Greenville, Columbia and Charleston, South Carolina.

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