Ariel Investments: “Our Biggest Disappointment was Lazard Ltd. (LAZ)”

Ariel Investments, an investment management firm, published its “Ariel Focus Fund” fourth quarter 2021 investor letter – a copy of which can be downloaded here. Ariel Focus Fund gained +4.95% in the fourth quarter trailing the Russell 1000 Value Index which increased +7.77% and the S&P 500 Index which gained +11.03%. For the full year 2021, Ariel Focus Fund posted a strong absolute return of +21.15% but trailed both the Russell 1000 Value Index and the S&P 500 which rose +25.16% and +28.71%, respectively Spare some time to check the fund’s top 5 holdings to have a clue about their top bets for 2022.

Ariel Investments, in its Q4 2021 investor letter, mentioned Lazard Ltd (NYSE:LAZ) and discussed its stance on the firm. Founded in 1848, Lazard Ltd (NYSE:LAZ) is a Hamilton, Bermuda-based financial services company with a $3.4 billion market capitalization, and is currently spearheaded by its CEO, Kenneth M. Jacobs. Lazard Ltd (NYSE:LAZ) delivered a -19.55% return since the beginning of the year, while its 12-month returns are down by -15.83%. The stock closed at $35.10 per share on March 21, 2022.

Here is what Ariel Investments has to say about Lazard Ltd (NYSE:LAZ) in its Q4 2021 investor letter:

“Our biggest disappointment was Lazard Ltd. (LAZ) which declined -3.80% in the quarter. Lazard has relatively small lending and trading businesses compared to other investment banks. In addition, we believe the company’s corporate structure continues to prevent significant institutional ownership among the index and hedge funds that are unable to invest in partnerships.”

Investments, Finance

Investments, Finance

Our calculations show that Lazard Ltd (NYSE:LAZ) failed to obtain a mark on our list of the 30 Most Popular Stocks Among Hedge Funds. Lazard Ltd (NYSE:LAZ) was in 15 hedge fund portfolios at the end of the fourth quarter of 2021, compared to 18 funds in the previous quarter. Lazard Ltd (NYSE:LAZ) delivered a -18.09% return in the past 3 months.

In March 2022, we also shared another hedge fund’s views on Lazard Ltd (NYSE:LAZ) in another article. You can find other letters from hedge funds and prominent investors on our hedge fund investor letters 2021 Q4 page.

Disclosure: None. This article is originally published at Insider Monkey.

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