Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Houlihan Lokey (NYSE:HLI) from a hold rating to a strong-buy rating in a research note published on Wednesday, Zacks.com reports. Zacks Investment Research currently has $50.00 price target 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. “

HLI has been the subject of several other reports. JMP Securities reduced their price objective on BioCryst Pharmaceuticals from $18.00 to $10.00 and set an outperform rating for the company in a report on Thursday, May 23rd. ValuEngine downgraded Intersect ENT from a buy rating to a hold rating in a report on Monday. Finally, Goldman Sachs Group reiterated a sell rating and issued a $45.00 price objective on shares of Intel in a report on Wednesday, April 3rd. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, two have issued a hold rating, five have given a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. The company presently has a consensus rating of Buy and a consensus target price of $50.08.

NYSE HLI traded up $0.21 during trading hours on Wednesday, hitting $43.40. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 330,855 shares, compared to its average volume of 247,290. Houlihan Lokey has a 12 month low of $34.31 and a 12 month high of $53.20. The stock has a 50 day moving average price of $45.31. The company has a market capitalization of $3.03 billion, a P/E ratio of 15.12, a P/E/G ratio of 1.21 and a beta of 0.97. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.01, a quick ratio of 0.76 and a current ratio of 0.76.

Houlihan Lokey (NYSE:HLI) last released its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, May 8th. The financial services provider reported $0.86 EPS for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $0.69 by $0.17. Houlihan Lokey had a return on equity of 22.31% and a net margin of 14.67%. The company had revenue of $291.40 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $266.26 million. During the same period last year, the company earned $0.65 EPS. Houlihan Lokey’s revenue for the quarter was up 19.0% on a year-over-year basis. On average, equities analysts predict that Houlihan Lokey will post 2.99 EPS for the current year.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, June 14th. Shareholders of record on Monday, June 3rd were paid a dividend of $0.31 per share. This is an increase from Houlihan Lokey’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.27. This represents a $1.24 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 2.86%. The ex-dividend date was Friday, May 31st. Houlihan Lokey’s payout ratio is currently 43.21%.

In other Houlihan Lokey news, major shareholder Orix Hlhz Holding Llc sold 3,000,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, May 28th. The stock was sold at an average price of $45.52, for a total transaction of $136,560,000.00. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this link. Insiders own 80.50% of the company’s stock.

Institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the business. American Century Companies Inc. bought a new stake in shares of Houlihan Lokey during the 4th quarter valued at about $3,390,000. Pier Capital LLC bought a new stake in shares of Houlihan Lokey during the 1st quarter valued at about $8,518,000. Natixis Advisors L.P. grew its stake in shares of Houlihan Lokey by 17.8% during the 4th quarter. Natixis Advisors L.P. now owns 163,361 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $6,011,000 after purchasing an additional 24,682 shares during the period. Thrivent Financial for Lutherans grew its stake in shares of Houlihan Lokey by 11.5% during the 4th quarter. Thrivent Financial for Lutherans now owns 427,863 shares of the financial services provider’s stock valued at $15,746,000 after purchasing an additional 44,053 shares during the period. Finally, Tibra Equities Europe Ltd bought a new stake in shares of Houlihan Lokey during the 1st quarter valued at about $477,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 58.04% of the company’s stock.

About Houlihan Lokey

Houlihan Lokey, Inc, an investment banking company, provides merger and acquisition (M&A), financing, financial restructuring, and financial advisory services worldwide. It operates in three segments: Corporate Finance, Financial Restructuring, and Financial Advisory Services. The Corporate Finance segment offers general financial advisory services; and advises public and private institutions on buy-side and sell-side transactions, leveraged loans, private mezzanine debt, high-yield debt, initial public offerings, follow-ons, convertibles, equity private placements, private equity, and liability management transactions, as well as financial sponsors on various transactions.

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