Lazard (LAZ) Upgraded to “Buy” at Goldman Sachs Group

Lazard (NYSE:LAZ) was upgraded by Goldman Sachs Group from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating in a report issued on Monday, MarketBeat reports. The firm presently has a $64.00 target price on the asset manager’s stock. Goldman Sachs Group’s price objective would indicate a potential upside of 12.22% from the stock’s previous close.

Several other research firms have also recently weighed in on LAZ. Nomura upgraded shares of Lazard from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and raised their price objective for the company from $46.00 to $62.00 in a research report on Wednesday, January 3rd. Instinet upgraded shares of Lazard from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report on Wednesday, January 3rd. Zacks Investment Research cut shares of Lazard from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Wednesday, January 3rd. Buckingham Research cut shares of Lazard from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating and set a $54.00 target price on the stock. in a research report on Thursday, December 21st. Finally, ValuEngine cut shares of Lazard from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report on Tuesday, October 3rd. Four research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and eight have given a buy rating to the company. The stock currently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $52.67.

Lazard (NYSE LAZ) traded up $0.94 during trading on Monday, hitting $57.03. 615,600 shares of the stock traded hands, compared to its average volume of 806,383. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.87, a quick ratio of 2.09 and a current ratio of 2.09. The stock has a market cap of $7,420.00, a PE ratio of 15.93, a P/E/G ratio of 1.86 and a beta of 1.89. Lazard has a 12-month low of $40.22 and a 12-month high of $57.50.

Lazard (NYSE:LAZ) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, October 26th. The asset manager reported $0.85 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.75 by $0.10. The firm had revenue of $624.00 million for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $593.19 million. Lazard had a net margin of 17.16% and a return on equity of 38.81%. The business’s quarterly revenue was up 2.5% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter last year, the company posted $0.85 EPS. equities research analysts forecast that Lazard will post 3.58 EPS for the current year.

Lazard declared that its Board of Directors has approved a share repurchase program on Wednesday, October 25th that allows the company to repurchase $200.00 million in outstanding shares. This repurchase authorization allows the asset manager to reacquire shares of its stock through open market purchases. Stock repurchase programs are generally an indication that the company’s leadership believes its shares are undervalued.

A number of large investors have recently modified their holdings of LAZ. PNC Financial Services Group Inc. raised its position in Lazard by 9.0% in the 2nd quarter. PNC Financial Services Group Inc. now owns 3,701 shares of the asset manager’s stock worth $172,000 after purchasing an additional 306 shares during the period. SG Americas Securities LLC purchased a new position in Lazard in the 2nd quarter worth $179,000. Cambridge Investment Research Advisors Inc. purchased a new position in Lazard in the 3rd quarter worth $221,000. The Manufacturers Life Insurance Company raised its position in Lazard by 18.4% in the 2nd quarter. The Manufacturers Life Insurance Company now owns 4,843 shares of the asset manager’s stock worth $225,000 after purchasing an additional 753 shares during the period. Finally, BNP Paribas Arbitrage SA raised its position in Lazard by 57.6% in the 2nd quarter. BNP Paribas Arbitrage SA now owns 5,327 shares of the asset manager’s stock worth $247,000 after purchasing an additional 1,947 shares during the period. Institutional investors own 73.47% of the company’s stock.

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Lazard Company Profile

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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