Lazard Ltd. (NYSE:LAZ) had its price objective boosted by Nomura from $43.00 to $46.00 in a research note released on Friday. The brokerage currently has a neutral rating on the asset manager’s stock.

A number of other brokerages also recently issued reports on LAZ. BidaskClub upgraded Lazard from a buy rating to a strong-buy rating in a research note on Monday, July 31st. Zacks Investment Research downgraded Lazard from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research note on Friday, July 28th. ValuEngine upgraded Lazard from a buy rating to a strong-buy rating in a research note on Friday, July 28th. Finally, Buckingham Research increased their price target on Lazard from $53.00 to $54.00 and gave the stock a buy rating in a research note on Friday, October 27th. Four research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, six have assigned a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. The company has an average rating of Buy and an average target price of $48.56.

Shares of Lazard (NYSE LAZ) traded down $0.04 during trading hours on Friday, reaching $46.97. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 248,139 shares, compared to its average volume of 688,861. The company has a market cap of $6,100.30, a P/E ratio of 12.40, a PEG ratio of 1.57 and a beta of 1.89. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.87, a current ratio of 2.09 and a quick ratio of 2.09. Lazard has a 52-week low of $37.37 and a 52-week high of $48.86.

Lazard (NYSE:LAZ) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, October 26th. The asset manager reported $0.85 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.75 by $0.10. The firm had revenue of $624.00 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $593.19 million. Lazard had a return on equity of 38.81% and a net margin of 17.16%. The business’s revenue for the quarter was up 2.5% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company earned $0.85 EPS. sell-side analysts forecast that Lazard will post 3.52 EPS for the current year.

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The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, November 17th. Investors of record on Monday, November 6th will be issued a dividend of $0.41 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Friday, November 3rd. This represents a $1.64 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 3.49%. Lazard’s dividend payout ratio is 46.86%.

Lazard declared that its Board of Directors has authorized a share buyback plan on Wednesday, October 25th that permits the company to buyback $200.00 million in outstanding shares. This buyback authorization permits the asset manager to repurchase shares of its stock through open market purchases. Shares buyback plans are often an indication that the company’s management believes its stock is undervalued.

Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in LAZ. UBS Asset Management Americas Inc. raised its holdings in shares of Lazard by 65.0% during the 1st quarter. UBS Asset Management Americas Inc. now owns 18,525 shares of the asset manager’s stock valued at $852,000 after buying an additional 7,300 shares in the last quarter. Parametric Portfolio Associates LLC raised its holdings in shares of Lazard by 52.4% during the 1st quarter. Parametric Portfolio Associates LLC now owns 39,832 shares of the asset manager’s stock valued at $1,832,000 after buying an additional 13,691 shares in the last quarter. Legal & General Group Plc raised its holdings in shares of Lazard by 266.1% during the 1st quarter. Legal & General Group Plc now owns 40,802 shares of the asset manager’s stock valued at $1,877,000 after buying an additional 29,658 shares in the last quarter. New York State Teachers Retirement System raised its holdings in shares of Lazard by 0.9% during the 1st quarter. New York State Teachers Retirement System now owns 11,200 shares of the asset manager’s stock valued at $515,000 after buying an additional 100 shares in the last quarter. Finally, KCG Holdings Inc. purchased a new position in shares of Lazard during the 1st quarter valued at about $219,000. 71.92% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

About Lazard

Lazard Ltd (Lazard) is a financial advisory and asset management company. The Company operates through two segments: Financial Advisory and Asset Management. It serves a range of clients around the world, including corporations, governments, institutions, partnerships and individuals. The Financial Advisory business segment offers corporate, partnership, institutional, government, sovereign and individual clients across the globe a range of financial advisory services regarding mergers and acquisitions (M&A) and other strategic matters, restructurings, capital structure, capital raising and various other financial matters to corporate, partnership, institutional, government, sovereign and individual clients.

Analyst Recommendations for Lazard (NYSE:LAZ)

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