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Keefe Bruyette Ups Raymond James Financial to Market Perform

From Standard & Poor's Equity Research

Keefe Bruyette upgraded Raymond James Financial (RJF) to market perform from underperform, noting the company's quarterly results.

Analyst Lauren Smith says results were ahead of the consensus forecast of 46 cents and her estimate of 44 cents. She says revenue exceeded her forecast by 10% as commissions and investment banking revenue outperformed. She says the revenue results are impressive given headwinds the company faced for more than half the quarter, beginning in mid-May. Although she believes there currently is a solid deal pipeline, she modestly lowers her $1.73 fiscal year 2006 (ending September) earnings per share (EPS) estimate to $1.71 on the belief that the current quarter could be challenging in private client and investment banking businesses. She keeps her $2.00 fiscal year 2007 EPS estimate.

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