Eaton Vance Management reduced its position in shares of Franklin Resources, Inc. (NYSE:BEN) by 8.3% during the third quarter, Holdings Channel reports. The institutional investor owned 1,049,375 shares of the closed-end fund’s stock after selling 95,298 shares during the period. Eaton Vance Management owned about 0.18% of Franklin Resources worth $37,326,000 as of its most recent filing with the SEC.
A number of other large investors have also recently made changes to their positions in BEN. Brighton Jones LLC raised its stake in shares of Franklin Resources by 0.3% in the third quarter. Brighton Jones LLC now owns 6,437 shares of the closed-end fund’s stock worth $229,000 after buying an additional 22 shares in the last quarter. Municipal Employees Retirement System of Michigan raised its stake in shares of Franklin Resources by 0.3% in the third quarter. Municipal Employees Retirement System of Michigan now owns 11,650 shares of the closed-end fund’s stock worth $414,000 after buying an additional 30 shares in the last quarter. Bingham Osborn & Scarborough LLC raised its stake in shares of Franklin Resources by 0.6% in the second quarter. Bingham Osborn & Scarborough LLC now owns 7,935 shares of the closed-end fund’s stock worth $265,000 after buying an additional 47 shares in the last quarter. Mutual of America Capital Management LLC raised its stake in shares of Franklin Resources by 0.3% in the third quarter. Mutual of America Capital Management LLC now owns 42,869 shares of the closed-end fund’s stock worth $1,525,000 after buying an additional 130 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Essex Financial Services Inc. raised its stake in shares of Franklin Resources by 1.6% in the second quarter. Essex Financial Services Inc. now owns 8,759 shares of the closed-end fund’s stock worth $292,000 after buying an additional 140 shares in the last quarter. 48.01% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.
Franklin Resources, Inc. (NYSE:BEN) traded down 0.67% during mid-day trading on Wednesday, reaching $39.74. The company had a trading volume of 1,757,825 shares. The company’s 50-day moving average is $40.32 and its 200-day moving average is $37.39. Franklin Resources, Inc. has a one year low of $30.56 and a one year high of $42.18. The stock has a market capitalization of $22.47 billion, a PE ratio of 13.39 and a beta of 1.78.
Franklin Resources (NYSE:BEN) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Friday, January 27th. The closed-end fund reported $0.77 EPS for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $0.68 by $0.09. The firm earned $1.56 billion during the quarter. Franklin Resources had a return on equity of 13.88% and a net margin of 26.77%. The business’s revenue for the quarter was down 11.2% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period last year, the company earned $0.74 earnings per share. Equities research analysts anticipate that Franklin Resources, Inc. will post $2.68 earnings per share for the current year.
The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, January 13th. Stockholders of record on Friday, December 30th were paid a $0.20 dividend. The ex-dividend date was Wednesday, December 28th. This is an increase from Franklin Resources’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.18. This represents a $0.80 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 2.01%. Franklin Resources’s dividend payout ratio is 26.94%.
A number of research firms have weighed in on BEN. Bank of America Corporation upgraded Franklin Resources from an “underperform” rating to a “neutral” rating in a research note on Wednesday, November 9th. Citigroup Inc. raised their price target on Franklin Resources from $40.00 to $40.50 and gave the company a “neutral” rating in a research note on Wednesday, January 25th. Credit Suisse Group restated an “underperform” rating on shares of Franklin Resources in a research note on Thursday, November 3rd. Deutsche Bank AG downgraded Franklin Resources from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating and raised their price target for the company from $30.00 to $35.00 in a research note on Thursday, November 10th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Finally, J P Morgan Chase & Co restated a “neutral” rating on shares of Franklin Resources in a research note on Thursday, January 12th. Three analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, seven have assigned a hold rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the company. The stock has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $36.85.
In other news, CFO Kenneth A. Lewis sold 1,866 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, December 16th. The stock was sold at an average price of $39.25, for a total value of $73,240.50. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Corporate insiders own 21.60% of the company’s stock.
About Franklin Resources
Franklin Resources, Inc is a holding company. The Company, along with its subsidiaries, operates as Franklin Templeton Investments. It is a global investment management company that provides investment management and related services to retail, institutional and high net-worth clients in jurisdictions around the world.
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