Lazard (LAZ) Receiving Somewhat Positive Press Coverage, Accern Reports

Press coverage about Lazard (NYSE:LAZ) has been trending somewhat positive this week, according to Accern Sentiment. Accern identifies negative and positive news coverage by monitoring more than twenty million news and blog sources in real-time. Accern ranks coverage of publicly-traded companies on a scale of negative one to positive one, with scores nearest to one being the most favorable. Lazard earned a coverage optimism score of 0.20 on Accern’s scale. Accern also assigned news headlines about the asset manager an impact score of 47.0905709543341 out of 100, indicating that recent news coverage is somewhat unlikely to have an effect on the stock’s share price in the near future.

Here are some of the headlines that may have impacted Accern Sentiment Analysis’s analysis:

LAZ has been the subject of several research reports. Buckingham Research upped their price objective on shares of Lazard from $53.00 to $54.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Friday, October 27th. TheStreet cut shares of Lazard from an “a-” rating to a “c+” rating in a research note on Friday, February 2nd. Sandler O’Neill reaffirmed a “buy” rating and set a $64.00 price objective on shares of Lazard in a research note on Thursday, January 11th. JMP Securities upped their price objective on shares of Lazard from $63.00 to $65.00 and gave the company a “market outperform” rating in a research note on Friday, February 2nd. Finally, Instinet raised shares of Lazard from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Wednesday, January 3rd. Three investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and nine have issued a buy rating to the stock. Lazard currently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $60.56.

Shares of Lazard (LAZ) opened at $54.23 on Friday. Lazard has a one year low of $40.50 and a one year high of $60.00. The company has a quick ratio of 2.09, a current ratio of 2.09 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.87. The firm has a market cap of $7,414.83, a P/E ratio of 29.47, a PEG ratio of 1.35 and a beta of 1.84.

Lazard (NYSE:LAZ) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, February 1st. The asset manager reported $1.12 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.92 by $0.20. Lazard had a net margin of 9.40% and a return on equity of 38.66%. The business had revenue of $683.00 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $658.86 million. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company posted $1.13 EPS. The business’s revenue for the quarter was down .3% on a year-over-year basis. sell-side analysts forecast that Lazard will post 3.99 earnings per share for the current year.

Lazard announced that its board has authorized a stock repurchase plan on Wednesday, October 25th that permits the company to repurchase $200.00 million in shares. This repurchase authorization permits the asset manager to reacquire shares of its stock through open market purchases. Shares repurchase plans are generally an indication that the company’s board of directors believes its stock is undervalued.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, February 23rd. Stockholders of record on Monday, February 12th will be paid a $0.116 dividend. The ex-dividend date is Friday, February 9th. This represents a $0.46 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 0.86%. Lazard’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 89.13%.

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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.

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