Franklin Resources, Inc. (BEN) Shares Reduced by HighPoint Advisor Group LLC

Franklin Resources, Inc. (BEN) Shares Reduced by HighPoint Advisor Group LLC

HighPoint Advisor Group LLC cut its position in shares of Franklin Resources, Inc. (NYSE:BEN) by 8.0% during the fourth quarter, according to its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The institutional investor owned 10,828 shares of the closed-end fund’s stock after selling 938 shares during the period. HighPoint Advisor Group LLC’s holdings in Franklin Resources were worth $470,000 as of its most recent SEC filing.

A number of other large investors have also bought and sold shares of the stock. Norges Bank acquired a new stake in Franklin Resources during the fourth quarter worth approximately $93,377,000. Equity Investment Corp Acquisition Inc purchased a new stake in shares of Franklin Resources during the fourth quarter worth $58,158,000. Renaissance Technologies LLC purchased a new stake in shares of Franklin Resources during the fourth quarter worth $38,507,000. Russell Investments Group Ltd. purchased a new stake in shares of Franklin Resources during the fourth quarter worth $36,586,000. Finally, Asset Management One Co. Ltd. boosted its stake in shares of Franklin Resources by 2,456.9% in the fourth quarter. Asset Management One Co. Ltd. now owns 961,321 shares of the closed-end fund’s stock worth $38,041,000 after buying an additional 923,724 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors own 48.31% of the company’s stock.

Franklin Resources, Inc. (NYSE:BEN) opened at 42.14 on Friday. The stock’s 50 day moving average price is $42.33 and its 200 day moving average price is $39.02. Franklin Resources, Inc. has a 52-week low of $30.56 and a 52-week high of $44.35. The firm has a market capitalization of $23.82 billion, a PE ratio of 14.20 and a beta of 1.78.

Franklin Resources (NYSE:BEN) last issued its earnings results on Friday, January 27th. The closed-end fund reported $0.77 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $0.68 by $0.09. The business had revenue of $1.56 billion for the quarter. Franklin Resources had a return on equity of 13.88% and a net margin of 26.77%. The company’s quarterly revenue was down 11.2% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period last year, the business posted $0.74 earnings per share. Analysts expect that Franklin Resources, Inc. will post $2.69 earnings per share for the current year.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, April 13th. Investors of record on Friday, March 31st will be given a $0.20 dividend. This represents a $0.80 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.90%. The ex-dividend date is Wednesday, March 29th. Franklin Resources’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is currently 26.94%.

A number of equities research analysts have recently weighed in on BEN shares. Credit Suisse Group AG reaffirmed a “sell” rating and issued a $32.00 price objective on shares of Franklin Resources in a research note on Sunday, February 5th. Morgan Stanley cut Franklin Resources from an “overweight” rating to an “equal weight” rating and set a $38.00 price objective for the company. in a research note on Thursday, March 16th. Deutsche Bank AG cut Franklin Resources from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Tuesday, January 31st. JPMorgan Chase & Co. reaffirmed a “neutral” rating on shares of Franklin Resources in a research note on Thursday, January 12th. Finally, Citigroup Inc lifted their price objective on Franklin Resources from $40.00 to $40.50 and gave the company a “neutral” rating in a research note on Wednesday, January 25th. Three investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, six have issued a hold rating, one has given a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $38.98.

In related news, Chairman Gregory E. Johnson sold 25,000 shares of the stock in a transaction on Monday, February 27th. The stock was sold at an average price of $43.18, for a total value of $1,079,500.00. Following the transaction, the chairman now directly owns 2,162,863 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $93,392,424.34. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this link. Also, insider Jennifer M. Johnson sold 16,835 shares of the stock in a transaction on Thursday, March 16th. The stock was sold at an average price of $43.90, for a total value of $739,056.50. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now directly owns 1,521,037 shares in the company, valued at $66,773,524.30. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Company 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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