MainStreet Investment Advisors LLC boosted its stake in Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ) by 21.9% in the 1st quarter, according to the company in its most recent 13F filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission. The firm owned 177,338 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock after purchasing an additional 31,905 shares during the quarter. Verizon Communications makes up 1.2% of MainStreet Investment Advisors LLC’s investment portfolio, making the stock its 21st largest position. MainStreet Investment Advisors LLC’s holdings in Verizon Communications were worth $9,528,000 as of its most recent filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission.
A number of other hedge funds and other institutional investors also recently modified their holdings of the business. State Street Corp raised its holdings in shares of Verizon Communications by 0.9% in the 4th quarter. State Street Corp now owns 164,278,821 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock valued at $10,086,720,000 after acquiring an additional 1,424,504 shares in the last quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC raised its holdings in shares of Verizon Communications by 4.3% in the 4th quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC now owns 62,486,079 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock valued at $3,829,119,000 after acquiring an additional 2,548,889 shares in the last quarter. Capital World Investors raised its holdings in shares of Verizon Communications by 1.7% in the 4th quarter. Capital World Investors now owns 51,341,129 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock valued at $3,152,345,000 after acquiring an additional 833,751 shares in the last quarter. Norges Bank purchased a new stake in shares of Verizon Communications in the 4th quarter valued at about $2,775,411,000. Finally, FMR LLC raised its holdings in shares of Verizon Communications by 4.0% in the 4th quarter. FMR LLC now owns 44,620,912 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock valued at $2,739,725,000 after acquiring an additional 1,704,351 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 65.98% of the company’s stock.
VZ has been the topic of several recent analyst reports. Robert W. Baird lowered their price target on Verizon Communications from $60.00 to $58.00 and set a “neutral” rating on the stock in a report on Tuesday, April 28th. Cowen raised Verizon Communications from a “market perform” rating to an “outperform” rating and set a $61.00 price target on the stock in a report on Monday, March 2nd. Oppenheimer initiated coverage on Verizon Communications in a report on Friday, April 24th. They set a “buy” rating and a $70.00 price objective on the stock. SunTrust Banks raised their price objective on Verizon Communications from $60.00 to $65.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Tuesday, April 28th. Finally, ValuEngine cut Verizon Communications from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Friday, May 1st. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, sixteen have issued a hold rating, six have issued a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the company. The stock currently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $61.44.
In other news, SVP Anthony T. Skiadas sold 10,744 shares of Verizon Communications stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, May 1st. The stock was sold at an average price of $57.10, for a total value of $613,482.40. Following the sale, the senior vice president now directly owns 27,501 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,570,307.10. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available through this link. 0.07% of the stock is currently owned by company insiders.
Verizon Communications stock traded up $0.13 during trading hours on Friday, reaching $54.10. The company had a trading volume of 19,890,395 shares, compared to its average volume of 15,030,494. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 2.02, a current ratio of 0.99 and a quick ratio of 0.95. The company has a 50-day moving average price of $56.54 and a 200 day moving average price of $58.10. The firm has a market cap of $223.33 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 12.21, a P/E/G ratio of 3.62 and a beta of 0.48. Verizon Communications Inc. has a 12-month low of $48.84 and a 12-month high of $62.22.
Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Friday, April 24th. The cell phone carrier reported $1.26 EPS for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.22 by $0.04. The business had revenue of $31.81 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $32.37 billion. Verizon Communications had a return on equity of 33.26% and a net margin of 14.00%. The business’s quarterly revenue was down 1.0% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the previous year, the firm earned $1.20 EPS. As a group, research analysts expect that Verizon Communications Inc. will post 4.77 earnings per share for the current year.
The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, May 1st. Stockholders of record on Monday, April 13th were given a $0.615 dividend. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, April 9th. This represents a $2.46 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 4.55%. Verizon Communications’s dividend payout ratio is currently 51.14%.
Verizon Communications announced that its Board of Directors has authorized a share buyback program on Thursday, February 6th that allows the company to repurchase 100,000,000 outstanding shares. This repurchase authorization allows the cell phone carrier to repurchase shares of its stock through open market purchases. Stock repurchase programs are generally an indication that the company’s board believes its shares are undervalued.
Verizon Communications Profile
Verizon Communications Inc, through its subsidiaries, offers communications, information, and entertainment products and services to consumers, businesses, and governmental agencies worldwide. The company's Wireless segment provides wireless voice and data services; Internet access on various notebook computers and tablets; international travel wireless services; and network access services to deliver various Internet of Things products and services, as well as offers digital advertising and digital media services platforms.
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