Reviewing Lazard (LAZ) & Focus Financial Partners (FOCS)

Lazard (NYSE:LAZ) and Focus Financial Partners (NASDAQ:FOCS) are both finance companies, but which is the superior business? We will compare the two businesses based on the strength of their profitability, analyst recommendations, dividends, risk, earnings, valuation and institutional ownership.

Analyst Ratings

This is a breakdown of recent ratings and target prices for Lazard and Focus Financial Partners, as provided by

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Lazard 0 3 6 0 2.67
Focus Financial Partners 0 3 1 0 2.25

Lazard presently has a consensus target price of $57.43, suggesting a potential upside of 55.04%. Focus Financial Partners has a consensus target price of $42.67, suggesting a potential upside of 54.25%. Given Lazard’s stronger consensus rating and higher probable upside, equities research analysts clearly believe Lazard is more favorable than Focus Financial Partners.

Earnings & Valuation

This table compares Lazard and Focus Financial Partners’ gross revenue, earnings per share and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio Net Income Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Lazard $2.70 billion 1.78 $253.58 million $3.78 9.80
Focus Financial Partners $662.88 million 2.73 -$48.35 million N/A N/A

Lazard has higher revenue and earnings than Focus Financial Partners.


Lazard pays an annual dividend of $1.76 per share and has a dividend yield of 4.8%. Focus Financial Partners does not pay a dividend. Lazard pays out 46.6% of its earnings in the form of a dividend. Lazard has raised its dividend for 7 consecutive years.

Insider & Institutional Ownership

71.4% of Lazard shares are owned by institutional investors. Comparatively, 80.7% of Focus Financial Partners shares are owned by institutional investors. 2.8% of Lazard shares are owned by insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that endowments, large money managers and hedge funds believe a company will outperform the market over the long term.


This table compares Lazard and Focus Financial Partners’ net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Lazard 11.49% 49.98% 11.98%
Focus Financial Partners -4.64% -4.59% 0.94%


Lazard beats Focus Financial Partners on 11 of the 14 factors compared between the two stocks.

About Lazard

Lazard Ltd, together with its subsidiaries, operates as a financial advisory and asset management firm worldwide. Its Financial Advisory segment offers various financial advisory services regarding mergers and acquisitions and other strategic matters, restructurings, capital structure, capital raising, shareholder advisory, and various other financial matters. This segment serves corporate, partnership, institutional, government, sovereign, and individual clients. The company's Asset Management segment offers a range of investment solutions and investment management services in equity and fixed income strategies; and alternative investments and private equity funds to corporations, public funds, sovereign entities, endowments and foundations, labor funds, financial intermediaries, and private clients. Lazard Ltd was founded in 1848 and is based in Hamilton, Bermuda.

About Focus Financial Partners

Focus Financial Partners Inc. provides wealth management services to primarily high net worth individuals and families. The company's wealth management services include investment advice, financial and tax planning, consulting, tax return preparation, family office services, and other services. It also offers recordkeeping and administration services. The company was founded in 2006 and is headquartered in New York, New York.

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