Hennessy Advisors (NASDAQ:HNNA) versus Lazard (NASDAQ:LAZ) Financial Analysis

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Lazard (NYSE:LAZ) and Hennessy Advisors (NASDAQ:HNNA) are both finance companies, but which is the better business? We will contrast the two companies based on the strength of their valuation, earnings, analyst recommendations, institutional ownership, dividends, profitability and risk.

Institutional & Insider Ownership

73.9% of Lazard shares are owned by institutional investors. Comparatively, 11.3% of Hennessy Advisors shares are owned by institutional investors. 2.9% of Lazard shares are owned by company insiders. Comparatively, 40.7% of Hennessy Advisors shares are owned by company insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that hedge funds, large money managers and endowments believe a stock is poised for long-term growth.

Analyst Recommendations

This is a breakdown of recent ratings and target prices for Lazard and Hennessy Advisors, as provided by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Lazard 2 3 0 0 1.60
Hennessy Advisors 0 0 0 0 N/A

Lazard currently has a consensus target price of $37.80, suggesting a potential downside of 2.17%. Given Lazard’s higher possible upside, equities analysts plainly believe Lazard is more favorable than Hennessy Advisors.

Dividends

Lazard pays an annual dividend of $1.88 per share and has a dividend yield of 4.9%. Hennessy Advisors pays an annual dividend of $0.55 per share and has a dividend yield of 4.6%. Lazard pays out 45.2% of its earnings in the form of a dividend.

Valuation and Earnings

This table compares Lazard and Hennessy Advisors’ gross revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio Net Income Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Lazard $2.88 billion 1.51 $527.13 million $4.16 9.29
Hennessy Advisors $54.59 million 1.63 $20.61 million N/A N/A

Lazard has higher revenue and earnings than Hennessy Advisors.

Volatility & Risk

Lazard has a beta of 1.73, suggesting that its stock price is 73% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Hennessy Advisors has a beta of 0.89, suggesting that its stock price is 11% less volatile than the S&P 500.

Profitability

This table compares Lazard and Hennessy Advisors’ net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Lazard 12.29% 50.66% 7.39%
Hennessy Advisors 26.84% 16.61% 11.25%

Summary

Lazard beats Hennessy Advisors on 8 of the 13 factors compared between the two stocks.

Lazard Company Profile

Lazard Ltd, together with its subsidiaries, operates as a financial advisory and asset management firm worldwide. Its Financial Advisory segment offers various financial advisory services regarding mergers and acquisitions and other strategic matters, restructurings, capital structure, capital raising, shareholder advisory, and various other financial matters. This segment serves corporate, partnership, institutional, government, sovereign, and individual clients. The company's Asset Management segment offers a range of investment solutions and investment management services in equity and fixed income strategies; and alternative investments and private equity funds to corporations, public funds, sovereign entities, endowments and foundations, labor funds, financial intermediaries, and private clients. Lazard Ltd was founded in 1848 and is based in Hamilton, Bermuda.

Hennessy Advisors Company Profile

Hennessy Advisors, Inc. is publicly owned investment manager. It provides its services to Hennessy Funds and investment companies. The firm launches and manages equity, fixed income, and balanced mutual funds. It invests in the public equity and fixed income markets across the globe. The firm primarily invests in growth stocks of companies. It conducts in-house research to make its investments. Hennessy Advisors, Inc. was founded in 1989 and is based in Novato, California with additional offices in Boston, Massachusetts and Chapel Hill, North Carolina.

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