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Goldman Sachs downgrades Virtu Financial on top-line challenges

Goldman Sachs analyst Alexander Blostein downgraded Virtu Financial Inc. over beliefs that market volatility could limit the company's "near- to medium-term flexibility to pursue meaningful inorganic initiatives."

Blostein wrote that Virtu Financial shares have fallen 38% since being added to his Buy List on Jan. 4, 2019, with the underperformance largely driven by lower-than-expected volatility levels and retail activity trends.

The analyst also noted that current revenue conditions remain weak, putting pressure on EPS and cash flows.

Blostein downgraded Virtu Financial to "neutral" from "buy" and reduced the price target to $15.50 from $17.75. He lowered the 2019 EPS estimate to 84 cents from 99 cents and the 2020 estimate to $1.29 from $1.54.