Shares of Ares Management Corp (NYSE:ARES) hit a new 52-week high during mid-day trading on Wednesday . The stock traded as high as $26.46 and last traded at $26.46, with a volume of 600 shares changing hands. The stock had previously closed at $26.27.

Several research firms recently weighed in on ARES. Zacks Investment Research upgraded Ares Management from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $27.00 target price on the stock in a research report on Tuesday, April 16th. ValuEngine upgraded Ares Management from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report on Tuesday, February 5th. Two equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and six have issued a buy rating to the stock. The stock has an average rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $25.00.

The stock has a market capitalization of $2.72 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 18.52, a PEG ratio of 1.46 and a beta of 1.60. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.76, a current ratio of 0.12 and a quick ratio of 0.12.

Ares Management (NYSE:ARES) last released its earnings results on Thursday, May 2nd. The asset manager reported $0.35 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.37 by ($0.02). Ares Management had a return on equity of 25.86% and a net margin of 5.22%. The business had revenue of $224.66 million for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $228.42 million. During the same quarter last year, the company posted $0.39 earnings per share. As a group, analysts expect that Ares Management Corp will post 1.53 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, June 28th. Investors of record on Friday, June 14th will be given a dividend of $0.32 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, June 13th. This represents a $1.28 annualized dividend and a yield of 4.87%. Ares Management’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 90.14%.

A number of hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in ARES. Vaughan Nelson Investment Management L.P. purchased a new position in Ares Management during the first quarter worth about $29,366,000. Brown Advisory Inc. lifted its position in Ares Management by 126.2% during the fourth quarter. Brown Advisory Inc. now owns 1,684,985 shares of the asset manager’s stock worth $29,960,000 after buying an additional 940,186 shares during the period. Geode Capital Management LLC purchased a new position in shares of Ares Management in the 1st quarter worth about $12,774,000. BlackRock Inc. raised its holdings in shares of Ares Management by 287.0% in the 1st quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 683,230 shares of the asset manager’s stock worth $15,858,000 after purchasing an additional 506,687 shares during the period. Finally, FMR LLC raised its holdings in shares of Ares Management by 16.5% in the 1st quarter. FMR LLC now owns 2,808,368 shares of the asset manager’s stock worth $65,182,000 after purchasing an additional 396,792 shares during the period. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 59.19% of the company’s stock.

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About Ares Management (NYSE:ARES)

Ares Management Corporation operates as an alternative asset manager in the United States, Europe, and Asia. The company's Tradable Credit Group segment manages various types of investment funds, such as commingled and separately managed accounts for institutional investors, and publicly traded vehicles and sub-advised funds for retail investors in the tradable and non-investment grade corporate credit markets.

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