Oaktree Capital Gets an Upgrade on Progress in Distressed and Real Estate

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Oaktree Capital Gets an Upgrade on Progress in Distressed and Real Estate

Oaktree Capital Gets an Upgrade on Progress in Distressed and Real Estate

Howard Marks’ Oaktree Capital Group LLC (NYSE:OAK) has received a boost from Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS) Equity research analysts, Matthew Kelley and Kevin Kaczmarek, ahead of its Q3 earnings results announcement. The distressed debts and value oriented management firm, is backed to succeed in real estate investments, and also attracts a portfolio of renowned investors, including David Einhorn’s Greenlight capital, among others.

The analysts have revised the earnings estimates for the company upwards in anticipation of a better Q3, scheduled for announcement on November 6th before the market’s open.

Morgan Stanley analysts believe that Oaktree Capital Group LLC (NYSE:OAK) will report an adjusted net income (ANI) of $3.43 per share in the full year 2012, as compared to the initial estimate of $3.28 per share. Economic net income (ENI) is expected at $4.86, up from the prior estimate of $4.34 per share. The guidance for the next two years has also been revised upwards from $4.40 per share to $4.51 billion in 2013, and $3.98 per share to $4.08 in 2014.

The third quarter of 2012 economic net income estimates are also up from $1.36 per share in adjusted net income to $2.00, while distributed earnings are at $0.59 per share, up from $0.57. Adjusted net income for the most recent quarter ending September 30th 2012 is expected at $0.79 per share, as compared to $0.65 initially predicted.

The analysts based their decision of upgrading Oaktree Capital Group LLC (NYSE:OAK) on two major attributes, namely, the pace of distributions from the company’s Opps VIIb distressed debt fund, and progress in recent fundraising initiatives (such as real estate), which we covered in one of our articles.

They have rated the stock as overweight and put a price target of $55 per share. The analysts wrote, “we see significant upside in OAK shares, and believe the market assigns little value to OAK’s future carry (~9% market implied IRR vs 19% historical). We see the next major catalyst as Opps VIIb paying cash carry (we forecast 2Q13), resulting in a significant dividend increase (9% dividend yield in 2013e vs 5% in 2012e)”.

Oaktree Capital Group LLC (NYSE:OAK) was trading at $43.32 per share, at the time of this writing, up $0.69, or a 1.62% increase from yesterday’s close.

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