Franklin Resources, Inc. (BEN) Upgraded to Strong-Buy by BidaskClub

Franklin Resources, Inc. (NYSE:BEN) was upgraded by analysts at BidaskClub from a “buy” rating to a “strong-buy” rating in a research report issued on Wednesday, July 12th.

BEN has been the topic of several other reports. Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of Franklin Resources from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Tuesday, June 27th. Morgan Stanley lowered shares of Franklin Resources from an “overweight” rating to an “equal weight” rating and set a $38.00 target price on the stock. in a research note on Thursday, March 16th. Citigroup Inc. reissued a “neutral” rating and set a $43.00 target price (up from $42.00) on shares of Franklin Resources in a research note on Friday, June 9th. Credit Suisse Group reissued a “sell” rating and set a $37.00 target price on shares of Franklin Resources in a research note on Friday, April 7th. Finally, Deutsche Bank AG increased their target price on shares of Franklin Resources from $41.00 to $42.00 and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a research note on Thursday, April 6th. Three investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eight have given a hold rating and two have issued a buy rating to the stock. The company has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $43.18.

Shares of Franklin Resources (NYSE:BEN) traded up 0.14% on Wednesday, hitting $43.65. The company had a trading volume of 2,163,472 shares. Franklin Resources has a 52 week low of $33.02 and a 52 week high of $47.65. The firm’s 50 day moving average price is $45.27 and its 200-day moving average price is $42.82. The stock has a market capitalization of $24.34 billion, a PE ratio of 14.20 and a beta of 1.73.

Franklin Resources (NYSE:BEN) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Friday, July 28th. The closed-end fund reported $0.73 EPS for the quarter, meeting the consensus estimate of $0.73. Franklin Resources had a net margin of 27.30% and a return on equity of 13.96%. The company had revenue of $1.61 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $1.62 billion. During the same period in the prior year, the company earned $0.77 earnings per share. The firm’s revenue was down 1.2% on a year-over-year basis. Analysts forecast that Franklin Resources will post $2.95 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

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In other Franklin Resources news, CFO Kenneth A. Lewis sold 17,141 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Thursday, June 22nd. The shares were sold at an average price of $44.51, for a total value of $762,945.91. Following the completion of the sale, the chief financial officer now owns 124,021 shares in the company, valued at approximately $5,520,174.71. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. 21.60% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.

Several hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in BEN. Heartland Advisors Inc. increased its stake in shares of Franklin Resources by 10.7% in the second quarter. Heartland Advisors Inc. now owns 181,407 shares of the closed-end fund’s stock worth $8,125,000 after buying an additional 17,595 shares in the last quarter. Commerce Bank increased its stake in shares of Franklin Resources by 9.1% in the second quarter. Commerce Bank now owns 65,441 shares of the closed-end fund’s stock worth $2,931,000 after buying an additional 5,435 shares in the last quarter. NBT Bank N A NY purchased a new stake in shares of Franklin Resources during the second quarter worth about $206,000. Principal Financial Group Inc. increased its stake in shares of Franklin Resources by 81.7% in the second quarter. Principal Financial Group Inc. now owns 884,495 shares of the closed-end fund’s stock worth $39,617,000 after buying an additional 397,794 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Contrarius Investment Management Ltd increased its stake in shares of Franklin Resources by 2.4% in the second quarter. Contrarius Investment Management Ltd now owns 543,258 shares of the closed-end fund’s stock worth $24,333,000 after buying an additional 12,540 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 45.80% of the company’s stock.

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.

Analyst Recommendations for Franklin Resources (NYSE:BEN)

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