Shares of Franklin Resources, Inc. (NYSE:BEN) have received an average recommendation of “Hold” from the eleven analysts that are covering the stock. Three investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell recommendation, five have given a hold recommendation, one has assigned a buy recommendation and one has issued a strong buy recommendation on the company. The average 1 year target price among brokerages that have updated their coverage on the stock in the last year is $40.31.

A number of equities analysts have issued reports on BEN shares. Morgan Stanley downgraded Franklin Resources from an “overweight” rating to an “equal weight” rating and set a $38.00 price objective for the company. in a report on Thursday, March 16th. Zacks Investment Research upgraded Franklin Resources from a “hold” rating to a “strong-buy” rating and set a $50.00 price objective for the company in a report on Wednesday, May 17th. Credit Suisse Group AG reiterated a “sell” rating and issued a $37.00 price objective on shares of Franklin Resources in a report on Friday, April 7th. Deutsche Bank AG increased their price objective on Franklin Resources from $41.00 to $42.00 and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a report on Thursday, April 6th. Finally, TheStreet upgraded Franklin Resources from a “c” rating to a “b-” rating in a report on Friday, March 3rd.

Shares of Franklin Resources (NYSE:BEN) traded down 1.71% during mid-day trading on Tuesday, hitting $41.40. 3,035,992 shares of the stock traded hands. Franklin Resources has a 52 week low of $30.56 and a 52 week high of $44.35. The firm’s 50-day moving average is $42.19 and its 200-day moving average is $40.98. The stock has a market cap of $23.24 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 13.34 and a beta of 1.78.

Franklin Resources (NYSE:BEN) last announced its earnings results on Friday, April 28th. The closed-end fund reported $0.74 EPS for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.67 by $0.07. The company had revenue of $1.60 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $1.57 billion. Franklin Resources had a return on equity of 13.88% and a net margin of 26.77%. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was down .8% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company earned $0.61 earnings per share. On average, analysts forecast that Franklin Resources will post $2.90 earnings per share for the current year.

In other Franklin Resources news, insider Jennifer M. Johnson sold 16,835 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Thursday, March 16th. The stock was sold at an average price of $43.90, for a total value of $739,056.50. Following the transaction, the insider now owns 1,521,037 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $66,773,524.30. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. Also, Chairman Gregory E. Johnson sold 25,000 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Monday, February 27th. The shares were sold at an average price of $43.18, for a total value of $1,079,500.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the chairman now directly owns 2,162,863 shares in the company, valued at approximately $93,392,424.34. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Company insiders own 21.60% of the company’s stock.

A number of hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of BEN. Van ECK Associates Corp increased its position in Franklin Resources by 1.1% in the fourth quarter. Van ECK Associates Corp now owns 4,571 shares of the closed-end fund’s stock worth $181,000 after buying an additional 48 shares in the last quarter. Federated Investors Inc. PA increased its position in Franklin Resources by 0.6% in the fourth quarter. Federated Investors Inc. PA now owns 9,148 shares of the closed-end fund’s stock worth $362,000 after buying an additional 56 shares in the last quarter. Alpha Windward LLC increased its position in Franklin Resources by 1.0% in the first quarter. Alpha Windward LLC now owns 5,921 shares of the closed-end fund’s stock worth $250,000 after buying an additional 57 shares in the last quarter. Creative Planning increased its position in Franklin Resources by 1.8% in the first quarter. Creative Planning now owns 5,664 shares of the closed-end fund’s stock worth $239,000 after buying an additional 98 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Mutual of America Capital Management LLC increased its position in Franklin Resources by 0.3% in the first quarter. Mutual of America Capital Management LLC now owns 40,840 shares of the closed-end fund’s stock worth $1,721,000 after buying an additional 104 shares in the last quarter. 48.31% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

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Franklin Resources Company Profile

Franklin Resources, Inc is a holding company. The Company, along with its subsidiaries, operates as Franklin Templeton Investments. It is a global investment management company that provides investment management and related services to retail, institutional and high net-worth clients in jurisdictions around the world.

12 Month Chart for NYSE:BEN

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