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Lazard (NYSE:LAZ)‘s stock had its “neutral” rating reiterated by Zacks in a report issued on Tuesday. They currently have a $34.00 price target on the stock. Zacks‘s price target suggests a potential downside of 31.96% from the company’s current price.

Zacks’ analyst wrote, “We are initiating coverage on Lazard with a Neutral rating. The company’s fourth-quarter 2012 adjusted earnings significantly beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate. Moreover, results compared favorably with the year-ago earnings. Better-than-expected results were aided by an increase in top line, elevated assets under management (AUM) and a strong capital position. However, higher expenses acted as a dampener. The sluggish economic recovery coupled with regulatory issues and increasing expenses will likely put Lazard’s profitability under pressure in the near term. However, we believe that the company’s diverse footprint and cost-curtailment initiatives will position it comfortably in the long run. Moreover, capital deployment efforts would further enhance investors’ confidence in the stock.”

Shares of Lazard (NYSE:LAZ) traded up 0.06% during mid-day trading on Tuesday, hitting $49.97. 425,693 shares of the company’s stock traded hands. Lazard has a 1-year low of $30.63 and a 1-year high of $50.61. The stock has a 50-day moving average of $47.85 and a 200-day moving average of $45.02. The company has a market cap of $6.138 billion and a P/E ratio of 29.48.

Lazard (NYSE:LAZ) last announced its earnings results on Thursday, May 1st. The company reported $0.61 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the analysts’ consensus estimate of $0.54 by $0.07. The company had revenue of $540.00 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $514.80 million. During the same quarter last year, the company posted $0.28 earnings per share. Lazard’s revenue was up 30.4% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, analysts predict that Lazard will post $2.74 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which is scheduled for Friday, May 23rd. Stockholders of record on Monday, May 12th will be paid a dividend of $0.30 per share. This represents a $1.20 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 2.40%. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, May 8th.

Lazard Ltd (NYSE:LAZ) is holding company.

To view Zacks’ full report, visit Zacks’ official website.

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