Franklin Resources Inc. (NYSE:BEN) had its price objective boosted by research analysts at Jefferies Group from $34.00 to $36.00 in a note issued to investors on Tuesday. The brokerage presently has a “hold” rating on the closed-end fund’s stock. Jefferies Group’s price target would indicate a potential upside of 3.60% from the stock’s current price.
Several other equities analysts have also recently weighed in on the company. Barclays PLC reaffirmed an “underweight” rating on shares of Franklin Resources in a research note on Thursday, August 25th. Keefe, Bruyette & Woods lifted their target price on Franklin Resources from $34.00 to $37.00 and gave the company a “market perform” rating in a research note on Friday, July 29th. Deutsche Bank AG lifted their target price on Franklin Resources from $34.00 to $35.00 and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research note on Wednesday, October 5th. Zacks Investment Research cut Franklin Resources from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Tuesday, October 4th. Finally, Citigroup Inc. lowered their target price on Franklin Resources from $40.00 to $39.00 and set a “neutral” rating on the stock in a research note on Tuesday, September 20th. Five investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eleven have issued a hold rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the stock. The company currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $37.88.
Shares of Franklin Resources (NYSE:BEN) opened at 34.75 on Tuesday. The company has a 50-day moving average of $35.73 and a 200 day moving average of $35.94. The stock has a market cap of $20.02 billion, a P/E ratio of 12.86 and a beta of 1.66. Franklin Resources has a 52-week low of $30.56 and a 52-week high of $42.23.
Franklin Resources (NYSE:BEN) last released its earnings results on Thursday, July 28th. The closed-end fund reported $0.77 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.67 by $0.10. Franklin Resources had a return on equity of 12.98% and a net margin of 23.44%. The company had revenue of $1.63 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $1.63 billion. During the same quarter in the previous year, the business posted $0.82 EPS. The business’s revenue for the quarter was down 18.3% on a year-over-year basis. Equities research analysts forecast that Franklin Resources will post $2.80 EPS for the current fiscal year.
The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, October 14th. Investors of record on Friday, September 30th will be paid a $0.18 dividend. The ex-dividend date is Wednesday, September 28th. This represents a $0.72 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 2.07%. Franklin Resources’s payout ratio is 26.57%.
In related news, insider Jennifer M. Johnson sold 15,892 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Thursday, August 25th. The stock was sold at an average price of $35.99, for a total value of $571,953.08. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now directly owns 1,473,782 shares in the company, valued at $53,041,414.18. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through the SEC website. Also, EVP Craig Steven Tyle sold 5,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Wednesday, August 24th. The shares were sold at an average price of $36.18, for a total value of $180,900.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 20.41% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.
Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of the stock. Commonwealth Equity Services Inc raised its position in shares of Franklin Resources by 7.3% in the first quarter. Commonwealth Equity Services Inc now owns 11,183 shares of the closed-end fund’s stock worth $437,000 after buying an additional 756 shares during the last quarter. Los Angeles Capital Management & Equity Research Inc. purchased a new position in shares of Franklin Resources during the first quarter worth approximately $577,000. Ngam Advisors L.P. raised its position in shares of Franklin Resources by 12.0% in the first quarter. Ngam Advisors L.P. now owns 91,560 shares of the closed-end fund’s stock worth $3,575,000 after buying an additional 9,806 shares during the last quarter. TIAA CREF Investment Management LLC raised its position in shares of Franklin Resources by 28.4% in the first quarter. TIAA CREF Investment Management LLC now owns 1,444,328 shares of the closed-end fund’s stock worth $56,401,000 after buying an additional 319,469 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Teachers Advisors Inc. raised its position in shares of Franklin Resources by 4.8% in the first quarter. Teachers Advisors Inc. now owns 673,010 shares of the closed-end fund’s stock worth $26,281,000 after buying an additional 30,546 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 48.39% of the company’s stock.
About Franklin Resources
Franklin Resources, Inc (Franklin), is a holding company. Franklin together with its various subsidiaries (collectively, the Company), is referred to as Franklin Templeton Investments, is a global investment management organization offering investment management and related services under the Franklin, Templeton, Mutual Series, Bissett, Fiduciary and Darby brand names.
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