Morgan Stanley Analysts Give Legg Mason (LM) a $27.00 Price Target

Morgan Stanley set a $27.00 price objective on Legg Mason (NYSE:LM) in a report issued on Thursday, TipRanks reports. The brokerage currently has a sell rating on the asset manager’s stock.

Other equities research analysts have also recently issued research reports about the stock. Citigroup raised shares of Legg Mason from a neutral rating to a buy rating and increased their price target for the company from $27.00 to $29.50 in a research report on Tuesday, February 5th. Gabelli reaffirmed a buy rating on shares of Legg Mason in a research report on Wednesday, April 10th. Wells Fargo & Co reaffirmed a buy rating on shares of Legg Mason in a research report on Wednesday, April 10th. Zacks Investment Research raised shares of Legg Mason from a hold rating to a buy rating and set a $33.00 target price for the company in a research report on Tuesday, April 9th. Finally, ValuEngine raised shares of Legg Mason from a sell rating to a hold rating in a research report on Wednesday, April 24th. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, five have issued a hold rating and four have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The company has a consensus rating of Hold and a consensus target price of $32.44.

LM traded down $0.60 during trading on Thursday, hitting $35.31. 1,556,800 shares of the stock traded hands, compared to its average volume of 1,102,272. The stock has a market capitalization of $3.10 billion, a P/E ratio of 11.62, a PEG ratio of 0.70 and a beta of 1.73. The company has a quick ratio of 1.33, a current ratio of 1.77 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.54. Legg Mason has a 12-month low of $23.25 and a 12-month high of $39.79.

Legg Mason (NYSE:LM) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Monday, May 13th. The asset manager reported $0.70 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.54 by $0.16. The business had revenue of $692.60 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $699.24 million. Legg Mason had a negative net margin of 0.98% and a positive return on equity of 7.24%. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was down 11.8% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company posted $0.86 EPS. Sell-side analysts expect that Legg Mason will post 3.17 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, July 22nd. Stockholders of record on Tuesday, July 2nd will be given a $0.40 dividend. This represents a $1.60 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 4.53%. This is a boost from Legg Mason’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.34. The ex-dividend date is Monday, July 1st. Legg Mason’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is currently 44.74%.

In other news, EVP Terence Johnson sold 18,525 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Thursday, May 16th. The shares were sold at an average price of $36.21, for a total value of $670,790.25. Following the completion of the sale, the executive vice president now directly owns 124,300 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $4,500,903. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available at the SEC website. Also, CAO Ursula Schliessler sold 3,608 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Thursday, May 16th. The stock was sold at an average price of $36.03, for a total transaction of $129,996.24. Following the completion of the sale, the chief accounting officer now directly owns 27,495 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $990,644.85. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last ninety days, insiders sold 63,378 shares of company stock valued at $2,292,180. Corporate insiders own 4.33% of the company’s stock.

Institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of the stock. Financial Architects Inc bought a new position in shares of Legg Mason in the 4th quarter worth about $26,000. Amundi Pioneer Asset Management Inc. bought a new position in shares of Legg Mason in the 4th quarter worth about $104,000. Ladenburg Thalmann Financial Services Inc. increased its stake in shares of Legg Mason by 30.2% in the 1st quarter. Ladenburg Thalmann Financial Services Inc. now owns 4,102 shares of the asset manager’s stock worth $112,000 after acquiring an additional 951 shares in the last quarter. NumerixS Investment Technologies Inc bought a new position in shares of Legg Mason in the 1st quarter worth about $132,000. Finally, Barrow Hanley Mewhinney & Strauss LLC increased its stake in shares of Legg Mason by 9.8% in the 4th quarter. Barrow Hanley Mewhinney & Strauss LLC now owns 6,261 shares of the asset manager’s stock worth $159,000 after acquiring an additional 559 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors own 84.76% of the company’s stock.

About Legg Mason

Legg Mason, Inc is a publicly owned asset management holding company. Through its subsidiaries, the firm provides investment management and related services to company-sponsored mutual funds and other investment vehicles including pension funds, foundations, endowments, sovereign wealth funds, insurance companies, private banks, family offices, individuals, as well as to global, institutional, and retail clients.

Further Reading: How are institutional investors different from individual investors?

Analyst Recommendations for Legg Mason (NYSE:LM)

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