First Financial Northwest, Inc. (NASDAQ:FFNW) Short Interest Update

First Financial Northwest, Inc. (NASDAQ:FFNW) was the target of a large decline in short interest in the month of August. As of August 31st, there was short interest totalling 68,500 shares, a decline of 15.1% from the July 31st total of 80,700 shares. Based on an average daily volume of 15,800 shares, the short-interest ratio is currently 4.3 days. Currently, 0.9% of the shares of the company are short sold.

Shares of First Financial Northwest stock traded up $0.24 on Friday, hitting $14.90. 343 shares of the company’s stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 23,901. The company has a 50-day simple moving average of $14.22 and a 200-day simple moving average of $15.17. The stock has a market capitalization of $154.51 million, a PE ratio of 10.42, a PEG ratio of 2.19 and a beta of 0.24. First Financial Northwest has a 1 year low of $13.20 and a 1 year high of $17.36. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.68, a quick ratio of 1.06 and a current ratio of 1.06.

First Financial Northwest (NASDAQ:FFNW) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, July 25th. The bank reported $0.33 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.22 by $0.11. The business had revenue of $10.59 million for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $11.04 million. First Financial Northwest had a net margin of 16.78% and a return on equity of 6.65%. On average, analysts expect that First Financial Northwest will post 0.98 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, September 20th. Stockholders of record on Friday, September 6th will be paid a dividend of $0.09 per share. This represents a $0.36 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 2.42%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, September 5th. First Financial Northwest’s dividend payout ratio is presently 25.17%.

A number of equities research analysts have commented on the stock. Janney Montgomery Scott raised shares of First Financial Northwest from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report on Thursday, July 18th. Zacks Investment Research cut shares of First Financial Northwest from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Wednesday, July 31st. Finally, ValuEngine upgraded shares of First Financial Northwest from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Thursday, August 1st.

Several institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of the company. BlackRock Inc. boosted its stake in shares of First Financial Northwest by 4.6% during the 2nd quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 907,160 shares of the bank’s stock worth $12,836,000 after acquiring an additional 39,495 shares during the last quarter. Renaissance Technologies LLC boosted its stake in shares of First Financial Northwest by 1.7% during the 2nd quarter. Renaissance Technologies LLC now owns 660,900 shares of the bank’s stock worth $9,352,000 after acquiring an additional 11,300 shares during the last quarter. Context BH Capital Management LP boosted its stake in shares of First Financial Northwest by 0.5% during the 2nd quarter. Context BH Capital Management LP now owns 194,012 shares of the bank’s stock worth $2,745,000 after acquiring an additional 888 shares during the last quarter. Northern Trust Corp boosted its stake in shares of First Financial Northwest by 3.1% during the 2nd quarter. Northern Trust Corp now owns 100,960 shares of the bank’s stock worth $1,428,000 after acquiring an additional 2,992 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Acadian Asset Management LLC lifted its stake in shares of First Financial Northwest by 6.4% during the 2nd quarter. Acadian Asset Management LLC now owns 64,142 shares of the bank’s stock valued at $907,000 after buying an additional 3,834 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 44.86% of the company’s stock.

About First Financial Northwest

First Financial Northwest, Inc operates as the holding company for First Financial Northwest Bank that provides commercial banking services in Washington. The company offers a range of deposit products, including noninterest bearing accounts, interest-bearing demand accounts, money market deposit accounts, statement savings accounts, and certificates of deposit.

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