PNC Financial Services Group Inc. Reduces Position in Franklin Resources, Inc. (NYSE:BEN)

PNC Financial Services Group Inc. lessened its position in shares of Franklin Resources, Inc. (NYSE:BENGet Rating) by 2.1% during the first quarter, HoldingsChannel reports. The institutional investor owned 71,478 shares of the closed-end fund’s stock after selling 1,553 shares during the quarter. PNC Financial Services Group Inc.’s holdings in Franklin Resources were worth $1,996,000 as of its most recent filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission.

Other hedge funds have also recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. CIBC World Markets Inc. purchased a new position in Franklin Resources during the 4th quarter worth approximately $1,389,000. Zurcher Kantonalbank Zurich Cantonalbank lifted its position in Franklin Resources by 35.7% during the 1st quarter. Zurcher Kantonalbank Zurich Cantonalbank now owns 105,771 shares of the closed-end fund’s stock worth $2,953,000 after acquiring an additional 27,813 shares during the period. Kentucky Retirement Systems lifted its position in Franklin Resources by 5.2% during the 1st quarter. Kentucky Retirement Systems now owns 17,923 shares of the closed-end fund’s stock worth $500,000 after acquiring an additional 882 shares during the period. AlphaCrest Capital Management LLC acquired a new stake in Franklin Resources during the 4th quarter worth approximately $1,548,000. Finally, Cerity Partners LLC acquired a new stake in Franklin Resources during the 1st quarter worth approximately $401,000. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 45.57% of the company’s stock.

Analysts Set New Price Targets

A number of analysts have weighed in on BEN shares. The Goldman Sachs Group started coverage on Franklin Resources in a research report on Tuesday, June 28th. They set a “sell” rating and a $23.00 price objective for the company. BMO Capital Markets decreased their price objective on Franklin Resources from $29.00 to $27.00 in a research report on Wednesday, June 1st. UBS Group raised their price target on Franklin Resources from $24.00 to $27.00 and gave the company a “neutral” rating in a report on Monday, August 1st. Morgan Stanley reduced their price target on Franklin Resources from $27.00 to $21.00 and set an “underweight” rating for the company in a report on Thursday, June 30th. Finally, Keefe, Bruyette & Woods cut Franklin Resources from a “market perform” rating to an “underperform” rating and reduced their price target for the company from $28.00 to $22.00 in a report on Tuesday, June 28th. Three equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating and six have assigned a hold rating to the company. Based on data from MarketBeat.com, the company currently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $26.88.

Franklin Resources Stock Performance

NYSE BEN opened at $25.89 on Tuesday. Franklin Resources, Inc. has a 1-year low of $22.61 and a 1-year high of $38.27. The company has a market capitalization of $12.90 billion, a P/E ratio of 7.71, a PEG ratio of 4.56 and a beta of 1.19. The business has a 50 day moving average price of $26.01 and a 200 day moving average price of $26.51. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.72, a current ratio of 1.99 and a quick ratio of 1.99.

Franklin Resources (NYSE:BENGet Rating) last released its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, July 28th. The closed-end fund reported $0.82 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.73 by $0.09. Franklin Resources had a return on equity of 17.37% and a net margin of 20.25%. The firm had revenue of $2.03 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $2.75 billion. During the same period last year, the business posted $0.96 EPS. Franklin Resources’s quarterly revenue was down 6.5% on a year-over-year basis. Sell-side analysts expect that Franklin Resources, Inc. will post 3.6 EPS for the current fiscal year.

Franklin Resources Dividend Announcement

The company 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 $0.29 dividend. This represents a $1.16 annualized dividend and a yield of 4.48%. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, September 29th. Franklin Resources’s payout ratio is currently 34.52%.

Insider Activity at Franklin Resources

In other news, insider Franklin Resources Inc acquired 56,900 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, July 1st. The stock was purchased at an average cost of $4.45 per share, with a total value of $253,205.00. Following the purchase, the insider now directly owns 56,900 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $253,205. The acquisition was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at the SEC website. In related news, insider Franklin Resources Inc purchased 56,900 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Friday, July 1st. The stock was bought at an average price of $4.45 per share, with a total value of $253,205.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now owns 56,900 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $253,205. The acquisition was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through the SEC website. Also, CEO Jennifer M. Johnson sold 55,201 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Tuesday, August 16th. The stock was sold at an average price of $28.75, for a total value of $1,587,028.75. Following the transaction, the chief executive officer now directly owns 1,870,068 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $53,764,455. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last ninety days, insiders bought 3,806,049 shares of company stock valued at $33,623,107 and sold 77,502 shares valued at $2,216,491. 23.30% of the stock is currently owned by company insiders.

Franklin Resources Profile

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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.

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Want to see what other hedge funds are holding BEN? Visit HoldingsChannel.com to get the latest 13F filings and insider trades for Franklin Resources, Inc. (NYSE:BENGet Rating).

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

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