Legal & General Group Plc boosted its stake in shares of Lazard Ltd. (NYSE:LAZ) by 266.1% during the first quarter, according to its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The institutional investor owned 40,802 shares of the asset manager’s stock after buying an additional 29,658 shares during the period. Legal & General Group Plc’s holdings in Lazard were worth $1,877,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.

Several other large investors have also recently bought and sold shares of the stock. WCM Investment Management CA raised its stake in Lazard by 6.2% in the first quarter. WCM Investment Management CA now owns 6,161,175 shares of the asset manager’s stock valued at $283,353,000 after buying an additional 359,974 shares in the last quarter. Westpac Banking Corp bought a new position in shares of Lazard during the first quarter worth approximately $103,532,000. Hosking Partners LLP increased its position in shares of Lazard by 9.8% in the first quarter. Hosking Partners LLP now owns 993,082 shares of the asset manager’s stock worth $45,672,000 after buying an additional 88,643 shares during the last quarter. Teachers Advisors LLC increased its position in shares of Lazard by 4.5% in the first quarter. Teachers Advisors LLC now owns 847,527 shares of the asset manager’s stock worth $38,978,000 after buying an additional 36,628 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Norges Bank bought a new position in shares of Lazard during the fourth quarter worth approximately $26,117,000. 73.73% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

Lazard Ltd. (NYSE:LAZ) opened at 47.23 on Thursday. The company has a market cap of $5.79 billion, a PE ratio of 14.62 and a beta of 1.84. Lazard Ltd. has a 1-year low of $32.53 and a 1-year high of $47.62. The stock has a 50 day moving average price of $45.85 and a 200 day moving average price of $44.22.

Lazard (NYSE:LAZ) last posted its earnings results on Thursday, April 27th. The asset manager reported $0.83 EPS for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.80 by $0.03. The business had revenue of $624.43 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $611.43 million. Lazard had a return on equity of 36.15% and a net margin of 17.06%. Lazard’s revenue was up 23.4% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter last year, the company earned $0.50 EPS. Equities analysts forecast that Lazard Ltd. will post $3.39 earnings per share for the current year.

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A number of research analysts recently commented on LAZ shares. Bank of America Corporation upgraded Lazard from an “underperform” rating to a “neutral” rating and set a $47.00 price objective for the company in a research note on Thursday, March 23rd. They noted that the move was a valuation call. BidaskClub upgraded Lazard from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Wednesday, June 21st. Zacks Investment Research upgraded Lazard from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $50.00 price objective for the company in a research note on Wednesday, June 7th. Keefe, Bruyette & Woods restated a “buy” rating and set a $51.00 price objective on shares of Lazard in a research note on Tuesday, May 9th. Finally, Credit Suisse Group restated a “buy” rating and set a $50.00 price objective on shares of Lazard in a research note on Friday, April 21st. Three investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and eight have given a buy rating to the company. Lazard has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $46.89.

In related news, General Counsel Scott D. Hoffman sold 35,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, May 16th. The stock was sold at an average price of $45.13, for a total transaction of $1,579,550.00. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through the SEC website. Also, COO Alexander F. Stern sold 65,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, May 11th. The stock was sold at an average price of $44.75, for a total value of $2,908,750.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold a total of 190,000 shares of company stock valued at $8,521,200 in the last 90 days. 2.50% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

Lazard Company Profile

Lazard Ltd (Lazard) is a financial advisory and asset management company. The Company operates through two segments: Financial Advisory and Asset Management. It serves a range of clients around the world, including corporations, governments, institutions, partnerships and individuals. The Financial Advisory business segment offers corporate, partnership, institutional, government, sovereign and individual clients across the globe a range of financial advisory services regarding mergers and acquisitions (M&A) and other strategic matters, restructurings, capital structure, capital raising and various other financial matters to corporate, partnership, institutional, government, sovereign and individual clients.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Lazard (NYSE:LAZ)

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