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Blackstone (BX) Stock Gains 9% Despite Q1 Earnings Miss

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Blackstone (BX - Free Report) reported first-quarter 2019 distributable earnings of 44 cents, lagging the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 52 cents. However, the figure reflects improvement from 41 cents earned in the prior-year quarter.

Shares of Blackstone gained nearly 9% in pre-market trading, following the company’s announcement of converting itself from a publicly traded partnership to a corporation, effective Jul 1, 2019. This move has been taken to attract more investors for its stock. However, the full day’s trading will depict a better picture of the actual price performance.

Results reflected higher revenues and growth in assets under management (AUM). However, higher expenses acted as a headwind.

Net income attributable to Blackstone was $481.3 million, up from $367.9 million in the year-ago quarter.

Revenues & AUM Improve, Costs Increase

Total revenues (GAAP basis) for the reported quarter were $2.02 billion, up 14% year over year. The top line beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $1.63 billion.

Total expenses (GAAP basis) increased 6% year over year to $1.04 billion due to rise in all expense components except for fund expenses.

Fee-earning AUM grew 2% year over year to $353 billion. Total AUM amounted to $511.78 billion as of Mar 31, 2019, up 14%. The rise in total AUM was largely driven by $42.9 billion of inflows, partially offset by $8.3 billion of realizations.

As of Mar 31, 2019, Blackstone had $4.1 billion in total cash, cash equivalents and corporate treasury investments, and $9.9 billion of cash and net investments.

Share Repurchase Update

The company repurchased 1.5 million units in the reported quarter.

Our Viewpoint

While Blackstone is well positioned to capitalize on the changing investment landscape by making long-term investments and augmenting its fund-raising abilities, increased dependence on management and advisory fees can affect its financials in the near term.

The Blackstone Group L.P. Price, Consensus and EPS Surprise

The Blackstone Group L.P. Price, Consensus and EPS Surprise | The Blackstone Group L.P. Quote

Currently, Blackstone carries a Zacks Rank #5 (Strong Sell).

You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

Performance and Upcoming Release Dates of Other Asset Managers

BlackRock’s BLK first-quarter 2019 adjusted earnings of $6.61 per share surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $6.20. Results benefited from a decline in expenses and higher AUM. However, lower revenues acted as a headwind.

Federated Investors, Inc. FII and Invesco IVZ are scheduled to report quarterly numbers on Apr 25.

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