Sciencast Management LP Buys 1,538 Shares of Franklin Resources, Inc. (BEN)

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Sciencast Management LP boosted its holdings in Franklin Resources, Inc. (NYSE:BEN) by 6.6% during the first quarter, according to the company in its most recent disclosure with the SEC. The firm owned 25,001 shares of the closed-end fund’s stock after purchasing an additional 1,538 shares during the quarter. Sciencast Management LP’s holdings in Franklin Resources were worth $849,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.

Other institutional investors and hedge funds have also made changes to their positions in the company. We Are One Seven LLC purchased a new position in Franklin Resources during the fourth quarter valued at $113,000. Elmwood Wealth Management Inc. purchased a new position in shares of Franklin Resources in the 1st quarter worth $164,000. Valeo Financial Advisors LLC grew its stake in shares of Franklin Resources by 150.9% in the 4th quarter. Valeo Financial Advisors LLC now owns 4,015 shares of the closed-end fund’s stock worth $174,000 after buying an additional 2,415 shares in the last quarter. Vantage Financial Partners Ltd. Inc. bought a new stake in shares of Franklin Resources in the 1st quarter worth about $222,000. Finally, IBM Retirement Fund lifted its holdings in shares of Franklin Resources by 46.4% in the 1st quarter. IBM Retirement Fund now owns 7,273 shares of the closed-end fund’s stock worth $252,000 after acquiring an additional 2,305 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 46.75% of the company’s stock.

Several equities research analysts have recently issued reports on the stock. ValuEngine lowered shares of Franklin Resources from a “sell” rating to a “strong sell” rating in a report on Wednesday, May 2nd. Credit Suisse Group decreased their price objective on shares of Franklin Resources from $57.00 to $34.00 and set an “underperform” rating for the company in a report on Thursday, April 5th. Morgan Stanley reduced their price target on shares of Franklin Resources from $42.00 to $35.00 and set an “underweight” rating for the company in a report on Tuesday, April 10th. Barclays reduced their price target on shares of Franklin Resources from $40.00 to $32.00 and set an “underweight” rating for the company in a report on Monday, April 23rd. Finally, Deutsche Bank cut their price objective on shares of Franklin Resources from $37.00 to $34.00 and set a “hold” rating on the stock in a research report on Friday, April 6th. Five analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating and eight have issued a hold rating to the company. Franklin Resources presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $40.36.

Shares of BEN opened at $32.05 on Friday. The company has a quick ratio of 2.46, a current ratio of 2.46 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.10. Franklin Resources, Inc. has a 12-month low of $31.56 and a 12-month high of $47.65. The stock has a market capitalization of $17.18 billion, a P/E ratio of 10.65, a PEG ratio of 1.40 and a beta of 1.59.

Franklin Resources (NYSE:BEN) last announced its earnings results on Thursday, April 26th. The closed-end fund reported $0.78 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.75 by $0.03. The company had revenue of $1.62 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $1.58 billion. Franklin Resources had a net margin of 10.76% and a return on equity of 14.66%. Franklin Resources’s revenue was up 1.1% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter last year, the firm posted $0.74 earnings per share. equities research analysts anticipate that Franklin Resources, Inc. will post 3.16 EPS for the current year.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, July 13th. Investors of record on Friday, June 29th will be issued a $0.23 dividend. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, June 28th. This represents a $0.92 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.87%. Franklin Resources’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 30.56%.

Franklin Resources declared that its Board of Directors has approved a stock buyback plan on Thursday, April 12th that authorizes the company to repurchase 80,000,000 outstanding shares. This repurchase authorization authorizes the closed-end fund to repurchase shares of its stock through open market purchases. Stock repurchase plans are usually a sign that the company’s leadership believes its stock is undervalued.

About Franklin Resources

Franklin Resources, Inc is a publicly owned asset management holding company. Through its subsidiaries, the firm provides its services to individuals, institutions, pension plans, trusts, and partnerships. It launches equity, fixed income, balanced, and multi-asset mutual funds through its subsidiaries.

Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Franklin Resources (NYSE:BEN)

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