LPL Financial (LPLA) Rating Lowered to Hold at Zacks Investment Research

Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of LPL Financial (NASDAQ:LPLA) from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research report sent to investors on Tuesday.

According to Zacks, “LPL Financial Holdings Inc. is engaged in providing an integrated platform of brokerage and investment advisory services to independent financial advisors and financial advisors at financial institutions in the United States. Its brokerage offerings include variable and fixed annuities, mutual funds, general securities, alternative investments, retirement plans, fixed income, and insurance offerings. LPL Financial Holdings Inc., formerly known as LPL Investment Holdings Inc., is based in Boston, Massachusetts. “

LPLA has been the subject of several other research reports. Citigroup raised their target price on shares of LPL Financial to $100.00 and gave the stock a buy rating in a report on Friday, February 1st. BidaskClub raised shares of LPL Financial from a hold rating to a buy rating in a report on Friday, December 21st. ValuEngine cut shares of LPL Financial from a hold rating to a sell rating in a report on Tuesday, October 23rd. Wells Fargo & Co raised their target price on shares of LPL Financial from $61.00 to $65.00 and gave the stock a market perform rating in a report on Friday, January 4th. Finally, Goldman Sachs Group assumed coverage on shares of LPL Financial in a report on Tuesday, November 27th. They issued a conviction-buy rating for the company. Four analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, six have issued a buy rating and two have given a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. The company presently has an average rating of Buy and an average price target of $80.44.

Shares of LPL Financial stock opened at $77.75 on Tuesday. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 2.43, a current ratio of 1.40 and a quick ratio of 1.40. LPL Financial has a 1 year low of $52.03 and a 1 year high of $79.34. The firm has a market cap of $6.65 billion, a P/E ratio of 14.59, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 0.81 and a beta of 1.59.

LPL Financial (NASDAQ:LPLA) last issued its earnings results on Thursday, January 31st. The financial services provider reported $1.49 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.37 by $0.12. LPL Financial had a net margin of 8.47% and a return on equity of 46.29%. The firm had revenue of $1.32 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $1.36 billion. As a group, equities analysts anticipate that LPL Financial will post 6.33 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, March 29th. Shareholders of record on Friday, March 15th will be issued a $0.25 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, March 14th. This represents a $1.00 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 1.29%. LPL Financial’s payout ratio is 18.76%.

In other news, insider Thomas Gooley sold 29,876 shares of LPL Financial stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, December 12th. The shares were sold at an average price of $60.72, for a total value of $1,814,070.72. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is accessible through the SEC website. Also, insider Michelle Oroschakoff sold 6,000 shares of LPL Financial stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, November 27th. The shares were sold at an average price of $63.00, for a total transaction of $378,000.00. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now owns 19,811 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,248,093. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold 144,499 shares of company stock valued at $9,867,875 in the last ninety days. 2.60% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the company. Vanguard Group Inc. grew its position in shares of LPL Financial by 2.6% in the third quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 9,789,045 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $631,492,000 after purchasing an additional 243,618 shares during the period. Vanguard Group Inc grew its position in shares of LPL Financial by 2.6% in the third quarter. Vanguard Group Inc now owns 9,789,045 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $631,492,000 after purchasing an additional 243,618 shares during the period. BlackRock Inc. grew its position in shares of LPL Financial by 0.9% in the fourth quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 4,181,657 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $255,415,000 after purchasing an additional 39,236 shares during the period. Frontier Capital Management Co. LLC grew its position in shares of LPL Financial by 12.4% in the third quarter. Frontier Capital Management Co. LLC now owns 2,524,046 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $162,826,000 after purchasing an additional 277,854 shares during the period. Finally, Southpoint Capital Advisors LP grew its position in shares of LPL Financial by 6.7% in the third quarter. Southpoint Capital Advisors LP now owns 2,400,000 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $154,824,000 after purchasing an additional 150,000 shares during the period. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 92.04% of the company’s stock.

LPL Financial Company Profile

LPL Financial Holdings Inc, together with its subsidiaries, provides an integrated platform of brokerage and investment advisory services to independent financial advisors and financial advisors at financial institutions in the United States. Its brokerage offerings include variable and fixed annuities, mutual funds, equities, retirement and 529 education savings plans, fixed income, and insurance, as well as alternative investments, such as non-traded real estate investment trusts and business development companies.

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