Lazard (LAZ) August 2019 AUM Declines on Overall Net Outflows

Lazard Ltd. LAZ recorded around 2.6% fall in preliminary assets under management (AUM) as of Aug 31, 2019, from the prior month. Total AUM came in at $228.8 billion, down from the July 2019 figure of $234.8 billion. Following this decline, investors’ disappointment led to a 2.63% fall in share price.

The August AUM displayed a market depreciation of $3.8 billion, net outflows of $0.4 billion and unfavorable foreign-exchange impact of $1.8 billion.

Lazard’s equity AUM at the end of August dipped 2.9% from the prior month to $187.2 billion. Also, other assets declined 4.1% to $4.7 billion. Further, fixed income AUM edged down 1.1% on a sequential basis to $36.8 billion.

Our Viewpoint

Lazard is well positioned to grow organically, driven by strength in its Financial Advisory and Asset Management segments. However, absence of continued growth in equity markets and stringent regulations remain headwinds.

The stock has gained around 13.9% in the past three months as against the 5.3% decline recorded by the industry.

Lazard currently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

Competitive Landscape

Among other investment managers, Invesco IVZ has announced its AUM for August 2019. The company’s preliminary month-end AUM of $1,175.1 billion decreased 2% from the prior month. This downside primarily stemmed from net long-term outflows, reduced money market AUM, foreign exchange, non-management fee earning AUM outflows and unfavorable market returns. These were partly offset by reinvested distributions. Notably, unfavorable foreign-exchange movement reduced the month’s AUM by $2.2 billion.

Franklin Resources BEN also announced preliminary AUM by its subsidiaries of $690.6 billion for August. Results display a 2.7% decrease from the $709.5 billion recorded as of Jul 31, 2019. Slight net outflows and net market declines led to this downside. Further, the reported figure went down 4.4% year on year.

Cohen & Steers CNS reported preliminary AUM of $69.6 billion as of Aug 31, 2019, up 3% from the prior-month level of $67.5 billion. Market appreciation of $2 billion and net inflows of $240 million were partly offset by distributions of $186 million.

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