Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Houlihan Lokey, Inc. (NYSE:HLI) from a hold rating to a strong-buy rating in a research note released on Thursday morning. The brokerage currently has $45.00 price objective on the financial services provider’s stock.

According to Zacks, “Houlihan Lokey, Inc. is an investment bank which focuses on mergers and acquisitions, financings, financial restructurings and financial advisory services. The Company’s operating segments consist of Corporate Finance, encompassing M&A and capital markets advisory; Financial Restructuring both out-of-court and in formal bankruptcy or insolvency proceedings; Financial Advisory Services, including financial opinions and a variety of valuation services; and Strategic Consulting, which advises in the areas of strategy development, operations, and performance improvement. It operates primarily in the United States, Europe, Asia and Australia. Houlihan Lokey, Inc. is headquartered in LOS ANGELES, United States. “

A number of other brokerages have also weighed in on HLI. Keefe, Bruyette & Woods reaffirmed a buy rating on shares of Houlihan Lokey in a research note on Tuesday, October 3rd. UBS AG reaffirmed a buy rating and set a $42.00 target price (up previously from $40.00) on shares of Houlihan Lokey in a research note on Wednesday, July 26th. BidaskClub lowered shares of Houlihan Lokey from a strong-buy rating to a buy rating in a research note on Tuesday, July 25th. ValuEngine raised shares of Houlihan Lokey from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research note on Friday, September 15th. Finally, J P Morgan Chase & Co assumed coverage on shares of Houlihan Lokey in a research note on Tuesday, September 12th. They set an overweight rating and a $42.00 target price on the stock. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a hold rating, six have assigned a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the company. The stock has an average rating of Buy and a consensus target price of $40.50.

Shares of Houlihan Lokey (NYSE:HLI) traded up 0.18% during trading on Thursday, hitting $39.96. 150,438 shares of the stock traded hands. Houlihan Lokey has a 12 month low of $23.19 and a 12 month high of $40.63. The company has a 50 day moving average price of $37.74 and a 200 day moving average price of $35.55. The firm has a market cap of $2.67 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 20.72 and a beta of 0.36.

Houlihan Lokey (NYSE:HLI) last announced its earnings results on Tuesday, July 25th. The financial services provider reported $0.50 earnings per share for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.44 by $0.06. The firm had revenue of $217.00 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $203.21 million. Houlihan Lokey had a net margin of 14.10% and a return on equity of 18.63%. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 19.9% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the previous year, the firm posted $0.35 EPS. Analysts anticipate that Houlihan Lokey will post $2.02 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

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The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, September 15th. Stockholders of record on Friday, September 1st were paid a dividend of $0.20 per share. This represents a $0.80 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 2.00%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Wednesday, August 30th. Houlihan Lokey’s payout ratio is 41.67%.

In other news, major shareholder Orix Hlhz Holding Llc sold 686,760 shares of Houlihan Lokey stock in a transaction dated Thursday, September 14th. The shares were sold at an average price of $36.26, for a total transaction of $24,901,917.60. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is accessible through this hyperlink. Insiders own 69.70% of the company’s stock.

A number of large investors have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. Vanguard Group Inc. boosted its stake in Houlihan Lokey by 3.6% during the second quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 1,661,986 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $58,003,000 after acquiring an additional 58,257 shares in the last quarter. Neuberger Berman Group LLC boosted its stake in Houlihan Lokey by 122.1% during the second quarter. Neuberger Berman Group LLC now owns 1,193,275 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $41,645,000 after acquiring an additional 655,940 shares in the last quarter. Voya Investment Management LLC boosted its stake in Houlihan Lokey by 19.6% during the second quarter. Voya Investment Management LLC now owns 843,812 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $29,449,000 after acquiring an additional 138,002 shares in the last quarter. Ameriprise Financial Inc. boosted its stake in Houlihan Lokey by 17.7% during the second quarter. Ameriprise Financial Inc. now owns 754,956 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $26,348,000 after acquiring an additional 113,420 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Bank of America Corp DE boosted its stake in Houlihan Lokey by 10.4% during the first quarter. Bank of America Corp DE now owns 429,782 shares of the financial services provider’s stock worth $14,806,000 after acquiring an additional 40,517 shares in the last quarter. 32.17% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

Houlihan Lokey Company Profile

Houlihan Lokey, Inc is a global independent investment bank that focuses on mergers and acquisitions (M&A), capital markets, financial restructuring, valuation, and strategic consulting. The Company operates through four segments: Corporate Finance, Financial Restructuring, Financial Advisory Services and Strategic Consulting.

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