JLL Selected by Desjardins, Shares Reach a New 52-Week High - Analyst Blog

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Jones Lang LaSalle Inc. ( JLL ), which shortened its name to JLL earlier this year, has been selected by North America's largest cooperative financial group - Desjardins Group - as its exclusive real estate service provider.

Following this, JLL shares scaled a new 52-week high of $135.94 on Monday, Aug 18. The shares were up 1.77% during the regular session, closing at $135.90 and returning 33.7% year-to-date. The average trading volume for the session was around 0.3 million shares. Solid second-quarter 2014 results by the company drove the stock to its new high.

Despite hitting its 52-week high, this Zacks Rank #2 (Buy) stock has plenty of upside left, given the company's improving fundamentals and expected long-term growth of 14.0%.

Growth Drivers

JLL offers extensive real estate services to over half of the world's top 25 banks and insurance companies. The company would now offer multiple real estate services for Desjardins Group's 600,000-square-foot corporate office portfolio in Ontario, the Atlantic provinces, and Western Canada. Lease administration and occupancy planning is also on the cards for the entire Canadian portfolio.

JLL's second-quarter 2014 adjusted earnings came in at $1.68 per share, helped by robust growth in fee revenue. Results comfortably exceeded the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $1.39 and the year-ago quarter figure of $1.15.

Consolidated fee revenue increased 18% from the prior-year quarter to $1.1 billion, driven by growth in leasing and Property & Facility Management revenues. Apart from this, JLL announced the acquisition of CLEO Construction Management in July, as part of its effort to enhance healthcare-oriented real estate services in the West.

Going forward, we believe that JLL's healthy product lines of leasing and Property & Facility management, along with strategic acquisitions and investments in recruitment, IT and data would act as the primary growth drivers.

Estimates Revision Show Potency

Echoing similar sentiments, the Zacks Consensus Estimate for 2014 climbed 2.9% to $7.42 per share, while that for 2015 advanced 2.7% to $8.40 per share over the last 30 days.

Other Stocks to Consider

Apart from JLL, other stocks that reached 52-week highs on Aug 18 include Avalonbay Communities Inc. ( AVB ), Boston Properties Inc. ( BXP ) and Equity Residential ( EQR ).

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

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

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