Zacks: Brokerages Expect Lazard (LAZ) to Announce $1.06 EPS

Equities analysts expect Lazard (NYSE:LAZ) to post earnings of $1.06 per share for the current fiscal quarter, according to Zacks Investment Research. Zero analysts have made estimates for Lazard’s earnings, with the lowest EPS estimate coming in at $1.03 and the highest estimate coming in at $1.09. Lazard posted earnings of $0.83 per share in the same quarter last year, which indicates a positive year-over-year growth rate of 27.7%. The firm is expected to issue its next earnings report before the market opens on Thursday, April 26th.

According to Zacks, analysts expect that Lazard will report full year earnings of $4.08 per share for the current financial year, with EPS estimates ranging from $3.61 to $4.48. For the next year, analysts expect that the company will post earnings of $4.57 per share. Zacks’ earnings per share averages are an average based on a survey of research firms that follow Lazard.

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Lazard (NYSE:LAZ) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, February 1st. The asset manager reported $1.12 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.92 by $0.20. The firm had revenue of $683.00 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $658.86 million. Lazard had a return on equity of 38.93% and a net margin of 9.40%. The company’s quarterly revenue was down .3% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the prior year, the company posted $1.13 earnings per share.

A number of brokerages have recently issued reports on LAZ. Sandler O’Neill reaffirmed a “buy” rating and set a $64.00 price target on shares of Lazard in a report on Thursday, January 11th. Nomura upped their price target on Lazard from $62.00 to $67.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Friday, February 2nd. Zacks Investment Research raised Lazard from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $59.00 price target on the stock in a report on Friday, April 13th. JMP Securities upped their price target on Lazard from $63.00 to $65.00 and gave the company a “market outperform” rating in a report on Friday, February 2nd. Finally, TheStreet downgraded Lazard from an “a-” rating to a “c+” rating in a report on Friday, February 2nd. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and ten have issued a buy rating to the company. The stock has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $58.89.

Shares of NYSE:LAZ opened at $53.47 on Friday. The firm has a market cap of $6,859.44, a PE ratio of 14.15, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.44 and a beta of 1.85. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.95, a quick ratio of 1.91 and a current ratio of 1.91. Lazard has a 1 year low of $40.50 and a 1 year high of $60.00.

In other Lazard news, COO Alexander F. Stern sold 65,160 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Monday, March 5th. The stock was sold at an average price of $53.12, for a total value of $3,461,299.20. Following the transaction, the chief operating officer now owns 276,886 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $14,708,184.32. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. Also, COO Alexander F. Stern sold 15,160 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Friday, March 2nd. The shares were sold at an average price of $53.47, for a total value of $810,605.20. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief operating officer now directly owns 276,886 shares in the company, valued at approximately $14,805,094.42. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last three months, insiders sold 95,320 shares of company stock worth $5,053,854. 2.76% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

Hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of the business. Denali Advisors LLC bought a new position in Lazard in the fourth quarter valued at about $105,000. Advisory Services Network LLC increased its position in Lazard by 83.2% in the fourth quarter. Advisory Services Network LLC now owns 2,151 shares of the asset manager’s stock worth $113,000 after buying an additional 977 shares in the last quarter. Genovese Burford & Brothers Wealth & Retirement Plan Management LLC purchased a new stake in Lazard in the fourth quarter worth about $125,000. First Dallas Securities Inc. purchased a new stake in Lazard in the fourth quarter worth about $127,000. Finally, American International Group Inc. purchased a new stake in Lazard in the fourth quarter worth about $144,000. 71.77% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

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Lazard Company Profile

Lazard Ltd, together with its subsidiaries, operates as a financial advisory and asset management firm worldwide. Its Financial Advisory segment offers various financial advisory services regarding mergers and acquisitions and other strategic matters, restructurings, capital structure, capital raising, shareholder advisory, and various other financial matters.

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