SEI Investments (SEIC) Downgraded to Sell at Zacks Investment Research

Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of SEI Investments (NASDAQ:SEIC) from a hold rating to a sell rating in a research report released on Thursday.

According to Zacks, “Shares of SEI Investments have underperformed the industry over the past year. The company’s earnings surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate in only two of the trailing four quarters. Earnings estimates have been stable ahead of the company’s fourth quarter results. Mounting operating expenses are expected to hurt the company’s bottom-line growth to some extent. As the company continues to invest in improving services, costs will likely increase in the quarters ahead. Although improving revenues and assets under management will boost growth prospects for the company, its increased exposure toward fee-based revenues makes us apprehensive as it might hamper financials in the near term.”

SEIC has been the subject of several other reports. BidaskClub upgraded shares of SEI Investments from a strong sell rating to a sell rating in a research report on Saturday, October 27th. TheStreet lowered shares of SEI Investments from a b rating to a c+ rating in a research note on Wednesday, December 12th. Oppenheimer cut their target price on shares of SEI Investments from $68.00 to $60.00 and set an outperform rating on the stock in a research note on Wednesday, January 9th. ValuEngine lowered shares of SEI Investments from a hold rating to a sell rating in a research note on Monday, October 8th. Finally, Rosenblatt Securities began coverage on shares of SEI Investments in a research note on Wednesday, December 5th. They set a neutral rating and a $59.00 target price on the stock. Three investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, two have assigned a hold rating and four have given a buy rating to the stock. The company currently has a consensus rating of Hold and an average price target of $69.50.

SEIC opened at $46.54 on Thursday. SEI Investments has a twelve month low of $42.27 and a twelve month high of $78.35. The firm has a market cap of $7.30 billion, a PE ratio of 20.06, a PEG ratio of 1.24 and a beta of 1.24.

SEI Investments (NASDAQ:SEIC) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, October 23rd. The asset manager reported $0.80 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.76 by $0.04. SEI Investments had a net margin of 31.46% and a return on equity of 30.73%. The company had revenue of $408.68 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $410.35 million. During the same period in the prior year, the company posted $0.63 earnings per share. SEI Investments’s revenue for the quarter was up 5.9% compared to the same quarter last year. Research analysts anticipate that SEI Investments will post 3.17 EPS for the current year.

The business also recently announced a semiannual dividend, which was paid on Tuesday, January 8th. Investors of record on Thursday, December 27th were paid a dividend of $0.33 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Wednesday, December 26th. This is a positive change from SEI Investments’s previous semiannual dividend of $0.30. This represents a yield of 1.33%. SEI Investments’s dividend payout ratio is currently 28.45%.

SEI Investments declared that its Board of Directors has initiated a stock buyback program on Tuesday, December 11th that authorizes the company to buyback $250.00 million in outstanding shares. This buyback authorization authorizes the asset manager to purchase up to 3.3% of its shares through open market purchases. Shares buyback programs are typically an indication that the company’s leadership believes its shares are undervalued.

In other SEI Investments news, EVP Wayne Withrow sold 4,997 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Wednesday, December 19th. The shares were sold at an average price of $47.50, for a total value of $237,357.50. Following the transaction, the executive vice president now directly owns 36,711 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $1,743,772.50. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this link. Also, major shareholder Alfred P. West, Jr. sold 145,238 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Wednesday, November 21st. The shares were sold at an average price of $52.76, for a total transaction of $7,662,756.88. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now directly owns 10,386,713 shares in the company, valued at $548,002,977.88. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last three months, insiders have sold 511,223 shares of company stock worth $27,124,902. 17.30% of the stock is owned by insiders.

Institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the business. GSA Capital Partners LLP acquired a new position in shares of SEI Investments in the second quarter worth about $536,000. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP lifted its stake in shares of SEI Investments by 1.4% in the second quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 516,778 shares of the asset manager’s stock worth $32,311,000 after acquiring an additional 7,104 shares in the last quarter. FMR LLC lifted its stake in shares of SEI Investments by 5.6% in the second quarter. FMR LLC now owns 206,863 shares of the asset manager’s stock worth $12,934,000 after acquiring an additional 11,055 shares in the last quarter. Envestnet Asset Management Inc. lifted its stake in shares of SEI Investments by 5.5% in the second quarter. Envestnet Asset Management Inc. now owns 22,253 shares of the asset manager’s stock worth $1,391,000 after acquiring an additional 1,156 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Renaissance Technologies LLC lifted its stake in shares of SEI Investments by 303.8% in the second quarter. Renaissance Technologies LLC now owns 119,626 shares of the asset manager’s stock worth $7,479,000 after acquiring an additional 90,000 shares in the last quarter. 69.29% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

About SEI Investments

SEI Investments Co is a publicly owned asset management holding company. Through its subsidiaries, the firm provides wealth management, retirement and investment solutions, asset management, asset administration, investment processing outsourcing solutions, financial services, and investment advisory services to its clients.

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