Blackstone Reaches 52-Week High - Analyst Blog

By Zacks Equity Research,

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Shares of The Blackstone Group L.P. ( BX ) achieved a new 52-week high, touching $35.30 in the last hour of the trading session on Mar 10. The closing price of this asset manager represents a year-to-date return of 12.5%. The trading volume for the session was around 4.9 million shares.

Despite the strong price appreciation, this Zacks Rank #3 (Hold) stock has plenty of upside left, given its strong estimate revisions over the last 60 days.

Growth Drivers

Impressive fourth-quarter 2013 results that included an improvement in assets under management (AUM), along with higher performance fees, were the primary growth drivers for Blackstone.

On Jan 30, Blackstone reported fourth-quarter 2013 earnings at $1.35 per share, outpacing the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 81 cents. Notably, the Private Equity and Real Estate segments performed remarkably well, given the favorable investment market and the company's diversified footprint.   

Blackstone's total revenue more than doubled in the reported quarter to $2,693.2 million. However, operating expenses increased significantly to $1,109.9 million.

Total AUM as of Dec 31, 2013 was $265.8 billion, up 26% year over year. The growth was primarily driven by gross inflows and market appreciation across all asset management segments.

Estimate Revisions Show Strength

Over the last 60 days, the Zacks Consensus Estimate for 2014 advanced 1.3% to $3.01 per share while for 2015, it rose 8.8% to $3.45 per share.

Some better-ranked asset managers worth considering include Calamos Asset Management Inc. ( CLMS ), Lazard Ltd. ( LAZ ) and Fortress Investment Group LLC ( FIG ). All these stocks sport a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy).

BLACKSTONE GRP (BX): Free Stock Analysis Report

CALAMOS ASSET-A (CLMS): Free Stock Analysis Report

FORTRESS INVEST (FIG): Free Stock Analysis Report

LAZARD LTD (LAZ): Free Stock Analysis Report

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Zacks Investment Research

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

This article appears in: Investing , Business , Stocks
Referenced Stocks: BX , CLMS , FIG , LAZ

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