Franklin Resources (NYSE:BEN) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note issued to investors on Monday.
According to Zacks, “Shares of Franklin Resources underperformed the industry over the past six months. However, the company’s earnings surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate in three of the trailing four quarters. We remain optimistic as strategic acquisitions and solid distribution platform have well positioned the company for growth. Further, management continues with cost-control measures. Also, its involvement in steady capital deployment activities boosts shareholders’ confidence. However, volatile markets and unfavorable global economic conditions may affect the company’s performance and hurt profitability.”
BEN has been the topic of several other research reports. Deutsche Bank dropped their target price on shares of Franklin Resources from $40.00 to $37.00 and set a “hold” rating on the stock in a research report on Tuesday, March 6th. Keefe, Bruyette & Woods reissued a “hold” rating and set a $47.00 target price on shares of Franklin Resources in a research report on Friday, December 22nd. Finally, ValuEngine downgraded shares of Franklin Resources from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Friday, February 2nd. Four investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eight have assigned a hold rating and one has issued a buy rating to the company. The stock currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $44.00.
Franklin Resources (NYSE:BEN) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, January 30th. The closed-end fund reported $0.88 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.75 by $0.13. Franklin Resources had a net margin of 10.44% and a return on equity of 13.88%. The firm had revenue of $1.62 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $1.62 billion. During the same quarter in the previous year, the firm earned $0.77 EPS. The company’s quarterly revenue was up 3.5% compared to the same quarter last year. equities research analysts expect that Franklin Resources will post 3.26 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.
In other Franklin Resources news, Chairman Gregory E. Johnson sold 49,988 shares of Franklin Resources stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, December 19th. The shares were sold at an average price of $43.58, for a total transaction of $2,178,477.04. Following the completion of the sale, the chairman now directly owns 2,116,886 shares in the company, valued at approximately $92,253,891.88. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is accessible through this hyperlink. Also, insider Jed A. Plafker sold 7,790 shares of Franklin Resources stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, December 21st. The shares were sold at an average price of $43.92, for a total transaction of $342,136.80. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders own 22.20% of the company’s stock.
A number of hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the business. New Mexico Educational Retirement Board lifted its stake in Franklin Resources by 4.3% during the 4th quarter. New Mexico Educational Retirement Board now owns 31,673 shares of the closed-end fund’s stock valued at $1,372,000 after acquiring an additional 1,300 shares during the period. LPL Financial LLC lifted its stake in shares of Franklin Resources by 9.3% in the 4th quarter. LPL Financial LLC now owns 15,417 shares of the closed-end fund’s stock valued at $668,000 after purchasing an additional 1,311 shares during the period. Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Public School Empls Retrmt SYS lifted its stake in shares of Franklin Resources by 5.2% in the 3rd quarter. Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Public School Empls Retrmt SYS now owns 26,760 shares of the closed-end fund’s stock valued at $1,191,000 after purchasing an additional 1,322 shares during the period. ETRADE Capital Management LLC lifted its stake in shares of Franklin Resources by 20.5% in the 3rd quarter. ETRADE Capital Management LLC now owns 8,295 shares of the closed-end fund’s stock valued at $369,000 after purchasing an additional 1,409 shares during the period. Finally, Sei Investments Co. lifted its stake in shares of Franklin Resources by 0.7% in the 3rd quarter. Sei Investments Co. now owns 212,846 shares of the closed-end fund’s stock valued at $9,474,000 after purchasing an additional 1,413 shares during the period. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 46.95% of the company’s stock.
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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.
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