Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of BlackRock, Inc. (NYSE:BLK) from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research report sent to investors on Wednesday morning.

According to Zacks, “BlackRock’s shares have underperformed the Zacks categorized Investment Management industry, in the last six months. The company’s second-quarter 2017 earnings lagged the Zacks Consensus Estimate on lower-than-expected revenue growth. Mounting costs (largely due to continuous marketing campaign) remains a major concern. Also, its high dependence on overseas revenues makes us apprehensive. However, the company is undertaking initiatives to restructure its actively managed equities business with an aim to meet changing client needs. These will further help top-line growth going forward. Further, it has expanded globally via acquisitions and remains well positioned to capitalize on opportunistic deals, given its strong liquidity position.”

A number of other equities research analysts have also recently commented on BLK. Credit Suisse Group reiterated an outperform rating and set a $534.00 target price on shares of BlackRock in a report on Tuesday, July 18th. Deutsche Bank AG reiterated a buy rating and set a $455.00 target price (down previously from $465.00) on shares of BlackRock in a report on Tuesday, July 18th. Keefe, Bruyette & Woods restated a hold rating and set a $440.00 price objective on shares of BlackRock in a report on Friday, July 14th. Wells Fargo & Company restated a market perform rating and set a $425.00 price objective (up previously from $380.00) on shares of BlackRock in a report on Wednesday, July 12th. Finally, Morgan Stanley restated an overweight rating and set a $476.00 price objective (up previously from $460.00) on shares of BlackRock in a report on Tuesday, July 18th. Seven equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, eight have given a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the company. The stock currently has an average rating of Buy and a consensus price target of $434.93.

Shares of BlackRock (NYSE:BLK) opened at 428.65 on Wednesday. The stock has a market cap of $69.81 billion, a P/E ratio of 20.57 and a beta of 1.71. The firm has a 50-day moving average price of $424.10 and a 200-day moving average price of $394.52. BlackRock has a 52-week low of $336.84 and a 52-week high of $442.84.

BlackRock (NYSE:BLK) last announced its earnings results on Monday, July 17th. The asset manager reported $5.24 EPS for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates of $5.39 by $0.15. The company had revenue of $2.97 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $3.01 billion. BlackRock had a net margin of 29.92% and a return on equity of 11.79%. BlackRock’s quarterly revenue was up 5.7% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter last year, the company posted $4.78 EPS. On average, analysts anticipate that BlackRock will post $21.90 EPS for the current fiscal year.

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The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, September 22nd. Investors of record on Tuesday, September 5th will be given a $2.50 dividend. This represents a $10.00 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 2.33%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, August 31st. BlackRock’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is currently 47.98%.

In related news, insider Jeff A. Smith sold 522 shares of the stock in a transaction on Tuesday, July 18th. The stock was sold at an average price of $421.52, for a total value of $220,033.44. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, insider Mark Mccombe sold 500 shares of the stock in a transaction on Friday, May 26th. The stock was sold at an average price of $405.98, for a total value of $202,990.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold a total of 3,522 shares of company stock worth $1,458,798 over the last ninety days. Corporate insiders own 1.86% of the company’s stock.

Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of the company. Proficio Capital Partners LLC raised its position in shares of BlackRock by 48.9% in the first quarter. Proficio Capital Partners LLC now owns 259 shares of the asset manager’s stock valued at $103,000 after buying an additional 85 shares during the period. Kings Point Capital Management raised its position in shares of BlackRock by 34.5% in the first quarter. Kings Point Capital Management now owns 273 shares of the asset manager’s stock valued at $105,000 after buying an additional 70 shares during the period. State of Alaska Department of Revenue purchased a new position in shares of BlackRock during the first quarter valued at $108,000. Peoples Financial Services CORP. purchased a new position in shares of BlackRock during the first quarter valued at $115,000. Finally, Financial Architects Inc raised its position in shares of BlackRock by 0.7% in the second quarter. Financial Architects Inc now owns 291 shares of the asset manager’s stock valued at $123,000 after buying an additional 2 shares during the period. 80.85% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

BlackRock Company Profile

BlackRock, Inc (BlackRock) is an investment management company. BlackRock provides a range of investment and risk management services to institutional and retail clients worldwide. Its diverse platform of active (alpha) and index (beta) investment strategies across asset classes enables the Company to tailor investment outcomes and asset allocation solutions for clients.

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Analyst Recommendations for BlackRock (NYSE:BLK)

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