Franklin Resources, Inc. (BEN) Receives Average Recommendation of “Hold” from Brokerages

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Shares of Franklin Resources, Inc. (NYSE:BEN) have earned an average recommendation of “Hold” from the fourteen brokerages that are currently covering the stock, MarketBeat reports. Six equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell recommendation, seven have assigned a hold recommendation and one has given a buy recommendation to the company. The average twelve-month price target among brokerages that have issued ratings on the stock in the last year is $30.55.

A number of brokerages recently weighed in on BEN. Citigroup upgraded shares of Franklin Resources from a “sell” rating to a “neutral” rating and lifted their price objective for the company from $28.00 to $35.00 in a report on Monday, April 15th. Bank of America set a $32.00 price objective on shares of Franklin Resources and gave the company a “sell” rating in a report on Tuesday, April 9th. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Franklin Resources from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $38.00 price objective for the company in a report on Wednesday, April 3rd. ValuEngine upgraded shares of Franklin Resources from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Friday, March 1st. Finally, Keefe, Bruyette & Woods reiterated a “hold” rating and issued a $33.00 price target on shares of Franklin Resources in a research note on Tuesday, February 26th.

Shares of BEN stock traded down $0.25 during trading on Thursday, reaching $35.42. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 157,491 shares, compared to its average volume of 2,200,924. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.07, a quick ratio of 3.93 and a current ratio of 3.93. The stock has a market capitalization of $18.04 billion, a P/E ratio of 11.17, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 2.05 and a beta of 1.18. Franklin Resources has a 1-year low of $27.34 and a 1-year high of $35.82.

Franklin Resources (NYSE:BEN) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, January 30th. The closed-end fund reported $0.54 earnings per share for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.64 by ($0.10). The business had revenue of $1.41 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $1.44 billion. Franklin Resources had a net margin of 26.55% and a return on equity of 15.01%. The company’s revenue for the quarter was down 7.6% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter last year, the firm posted $0.88 EPS. On average, research analysts forecast that Franklin Resources will post 2.48 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, April 12th. Investors of record on Friday, March 29th were paid a $0.26 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Thursday, March 28th. This represents a $1.04 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 2.94%. Franklin Resources’s dividend payout ratio is currently 32.60%.

In related news, EVP Craig Steven Tyle sold 10,663 shares of Franklin Resources stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, March 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $32.82, for a total value of $349,959.66. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through this link. 22.20% of the stock is owned by insiders.

Several large investors have recently modified their holdings of the company. Vanguard Group Inc lifted its position in shares of Franklin Resources by 17.1% during the 3rd quarter. Vanguard Group Inc now owns 32,666,942 shares of the closed-end fund’s stock worth $993,402,000 after buying an additional 4,764,162 shares during the last quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. increased its holdings in shares of Franklin Resources by 17.1% in the 3rd quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 32,666,942 shares of the closed-end fund’s stock valued at $993,402,000 after acquiring an additional 4,764,162 shares during the period. BlackRock Inc. increased its holdings in shares of Franklin Resources by 2.9% in the 4th quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 23,139,023 shares of the closed-end fund’s stock valued at $686,304,000 after acquiring an additional 646,242 shares during the period. Pzena Investment Management LLC increased its holdings in shares of Franklin Resources by 4.8% in the 4th quarter. Pzena Investment Management LLC now owns 9,396,639 shares of the closed-end fund’s stock valued at $278,704,000 after acquiring an additional 434,347 shares during the period. Finally, Kiltearn Partners LLP increased its holdings in shares of Franklin Resources by 4.6% in the 4th quarter. Kiltearn Partners LLP now owns 8,460,294 shares of the closed-end fund’s stock valued at $250,932,000 after acquiring an additional 370,500 shares during the period. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 49.43% of the company’s stock.

Franklin Resources Company Profile

Franklin Resources, Inc offers banking products and services. It offers demand deposits and interest and non-interest bearing time and savings deposits. The bank's deposits include jumbo deposits and retail time deposits. The bank provides commercial and industrial loans, consumer loans, commercial real estate loans, and other loans and leases.

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Analyst Recommendations for Franklin Resources (NYSE:BEN)

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