Contrarius Investment Management Ltd increased its position in shares of Franklin Resources, Inc. (NYSE:BEN) by 17.8% during the 4th quarter, according to the company in its most recent Form 13F filing with the SEC. The fund owned 739,585 shares of the closed-end fund’s stock after purchasing an additional 111,866 shares during the quarter. Franklin Resources makes up about 1.3% of Contrarius Investment Management Ltd’s holdings, making the stock its 23rd biggest position. Contrarius Investment Management Ltd’s holdings in Franklin Resources were worth $21,936,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.
A number of other institutional investors have also recently added to or reduced their stakes in BEN. Advisors Asset Management Inc. raised its position in Franklin Resources by 1,256.5% in the second quarter. Advisors Asset Management Inc. now owns 12,860 shares of the closed-end fund’s stock worth $412,000 after acquiring an additional 11,912 shares during the period. State of Alaska Department of Revenue raised its position in Franklin Resources by 3.9% in the third quarter. State of Alaska Department of Revenue now owns 72,769 shares of the closed-end fund’s stock worth $2,212,000 after acquiring an additional 2,751 shares during the period. BLB&B Advisors LLC raised its position in Franklin Resources by 34.8% in the third quarter. BLB&B Advisors LLC now owns 10,097 shares of the closed-end fund’s stock worth $307,000 after acquiring an additional 2,607 shares during the period. Bank of Montreal Can raised its position in Franklin Resources by 10.7% in the third quarter. Bank of Montreal Can now owns 437,857 shares of the closed-end fund’s stock worth $13,315,000 after acquiring an additional 42,174 shares during the period. Finally, Saratoga Research & Investment Management bought a new stake in Franklin Resources in the third quarter worth about $269,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 48.62% of the company’s stock.
NYSE BEN opened at $30.02 on Monday. Franklin Resources, Inc. has a 12-month low of $27.34 and a 12-month high of $40.56. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.07, a quick ratio of 3.93 and a current ratio of 3.93. The company has a market capitalization of $15.30 billion, a PE ratio of 9.41, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.84 and a beta of 1.14.
Franklin Resources (NYSE:BEN) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, January 30th. The closed-end fund reported $0.54 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $0.64 by ($0.10). Franklin Resources had a net margin of 26.55% and a return on equity of 15.01%. The business had revenue of $1.41 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $1.44 billion. During the same period last year, the firm earned $0.88 EPS. The business’s revenue for the quarter was down 7.6% on a year-over-year basis. Research analysts predict that Franklin Resources, Inc. will post 2.33 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.
In related news, Vice Chairman Rupert H. Johnson, Jr. sold 323,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, November 23rd. The shares were sold at an average price of $32.42, for a total transaction of $10,471,660.00. Following the sale, the insider now owns 103,653,045 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $3,360,431,718.90. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through this hyperlink. Also, EVP Craig Steven Tyle sold 10,216 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, December 3rd. The stock was sold at an average price of $34.26, for a total transaction of $350,000.16. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders own 23.90% of the company’s stock.
Several analysts have commented on the stock. Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of Franklin Resources from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report on Monday, December 31st. ValuEngine raised shares of Franklin Resources from a “strong sell” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report on Tuesday, November 20th. Morgan Stanley set a $29.00 price objective on shares of Franklin Resources and gave the stock a “sell” rating in a research report on Wednesday, November 14th. Citigroup lowered shares of Franklin Resources from a “neutral” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report on Monday, January 14th. Finally, Keefe, Bruyette & Woods reaffirmed a “hold” rating and issued a $28.00 price objective on shares of Franklin Resources in a research report on Wednesday, January 9th. Nine investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating and five have assigned a hold rating to the company’s stock. The company has an average rating of “Sell” and a consensus target price of $29.47.
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About Franklin Resources
Franklin Resources, Inc is a publicly owned asset management holding company. Through its subsidiaries, the firm provides its services to individuals, institutions, pension plans, trusts, and partnerships. It launches equity, fixed income, balanced, and multi-asset mutual funds through its subsidiaries.
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