Franklin Resources Inc. (NYSE:BEN) had its price target cut by investment analysts at Citigroup Inc. from $40.00 to $39.00 in a report issued on Tuesday. The brokerage currently has a “neutral” rating on the closed-end fund’s stock. Citigroup Inc.’s price objective would suggest a potential upside of 9.27% from the stock’s current price.

BEN has been the topic of several other research reports. Deutsche Bank AG reaffirmed a “hold” rating on shares of Franklin Resources in a research report on Sunday, July 10th. Keefe, Bruyette & Woods increased their price target on shares of Franklin Resources from $34.00 to $37.00 and gave the stock a “market perform” rating in a research report on Friday, July 29th. Barclays PLC increased their price target on shares of Franklin Resources from $30.00 to $31.00 and gave the stock an “underweight” rating in a research report on Tuesday, August 9th. Finally, Jefferies Group reduced their price target on shares of Franklin Resources from $38.00 to $34.00 and set a “hold” rating on the stock in a research report on Monday, July 11th. Four equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, twelve have given a hold rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the company. The company currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $37.74.

Analyst Recommendations for Franklin Resources (NYSE:BEN)

Franklin Resources (NYSE:BEN) opened at 35.69 on Tuesday. Franklin Resources has a 52-week low of $30.56 and a 52-week high of $42.23. The firm has a market cap of $20.56 billion, a PE ratio of 13.20 and a beta of 1.75. The firm’s 50-day moving average price is $35.99 and its 200 day moving average price is $36.21.

Franklin Resources (NYSE:BEN) last announced its earnings results on Thursday, July 28th. The closed-end fund reported $0.77 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.67 by $0.10. The company earned $1.63 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $1.63 billion. Franklin Resources had a return on equity of 12.98% and a net margin of 23.44%. The company’s revenue was down 18.3% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period last year, the firm earned $0.82 earnings per share. On average, equities analysts anticipate that Franklin Resources will post $2.79 earnings per share for the current year.

The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, October 14th. Investors of record on Friday, September 30th will be paid a dividend of $0.18 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Wednesday, September 28th. This represents a $0.72 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 2.02%. Franklin Resources’s dividend payout ratio is presently 26.57%.

In related news, EVP Craig Steven Tyle sold 5,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, August 24th. The shares were sold at an average price of $36.18, for a total transaction of $180,900.00. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available at this link. Also, insider Jennifer M. Johnson sold 15,892 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, August 25th. The shares were sold at an average price of $35.99, for a total transaction of $571,953.08. Following the transaction, the insider now owns 1,473,782 shares in the company, valued at approximately $53,041,414.18. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Corporate insiders own 20.41% of the company’s stock.

Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of BEN. Morris Capital Advisors LLC bought a new position in Franklin Resources during the first quarter worth approximately $225,000. Los Angeles Capital Management & Equity Research Inc. acquired a new position in Franklin Resources during the first quarter valued at about $577,000. Pacad Investment Ltd. acquired a new position in Franklin Resources during the first quarter valued at about $770,000. Mn Services Vermogensbeheer B.V. acquired a new position in Franklin Resources during the first quarter valued at about $339,000. Finally, Aperio Group LLC raised its position in Franklin Resources by 35.3% in the first quarter. Aperio Group LLC now owns 246,455 shares of the closed-end fund’s stock valued at $9,624,000 after buying an additional 64,241 shares during the period. 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.

5 Day Chart for NYSE:BEN

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