TELUS Co. (NYSE:TU) Sees Large Drop in Short Interest

TELUS Co. (NYSE:TU) (TSE:T) was the target of a significant drop in short interest in the month of January. As of January 31st, there was short interest totalling 1,460,000 shares, a drop of 11.0% from the January 15th total of 1,640,000 shares. Approximately 0.2% of the company’s stock are sold short. Based on an average daily volume of 405,500 shares, the days-to-cover ratio is presently 3.6 days.

NYSE:TU traded down $0.56 during mid-day trading on Friday, hitting $40.56. The stock had a trading volume of 816,063 shares, compared to its average volume of 462,809. The stock has a 50-day simple moving average of $39.53 and a two-hundred day simple moving average of $37.36. The company has a market capitalization of $25.00 billion, a PE ratio of 18.44, a PEG ratio of 2.67 and a beta of 0.65. TELUS has a twelve month low of $34.96 and a twelve month high of $41.81. The company has a current ratio of 0.80, a quick ratio of 0.73 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.49.

TELUS (NYSE:TU) (TSE:T) last issued its earnings results on Thursday, February 13th. The Wireless communications provider reported $0.67 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.52 by $0.15. The firm had revenue of $3.86 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $3.85 billion. TELUS had a net margin of 11.91% and a return on equity of 16.54%. The firm’s revenue was up 2.5% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter last year, the company earned $0.69 earnings per share. Sell-side analysts predict that TELUS will post 2.19 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, April 1st. Investors of record on Wednesday, March 11th will be issued a $0.44 dividend. This is a boost from TELUS’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.43. The ex-dividend date is Tuesday, March 10th. This represents a $1.76 annualized dividend and a yield of 4.34%. TELUS’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 81.78%.

Several research analysts have recently commented on TU shares. BMO Capital Markets reissued a “hold” rating and issued a $56.00 price objective on shares of TELUS in a research note on Friday. CIBC reissued a “hold” rating and issued a $54.00 price objective on shares of TELUS in a research note on Friday. TD Securities reissued a “buy” rating and issued a $61.00 price objective on shares of TELUS in a research note on Friday. Echelon Wealth Partners reissued a “buy” rating and issued a $56.00 price objective on shares of TELUS in a research note on Tuesday, November 12th. Finally, National Bank Financial lowered shares of TELUS from an “outperform” rating to a “sector perform” rating in a research note on Friday. Six equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and six have given a buy rating to the company. TELUS presently has an average rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $53.43.

A number of large investors have recently modified their holdings of the stock. TD Asset Management Inc. raised its holdings in TELUS by 0.6% during the fourth quarter. TD Asset Management Inc. now owns 21,984,644 shares of the Wireless communications provider’s stock worth $852,386,000 after purchasing an additional 137,364 shares in the last quarter. Beutel Goodman & Co Ltd. raised its holdings in TELUS by 7.0% during the third quarter. Beutel Goodman & Co Ltd. now owns 8,527,170 shares of the Wireless communications provider’s stock worth $13,658,000 after purchasing an additional 557,574 shares in the last quarter. Great West Life Assurance Co. Can raised its holdings in TELUS by 0.5% during the third quarter. Great West Life Assurance Co. Can now owns 6,457,351 shares of the Wireless communications provider’s stock worth $230,605,000 after purchasing an additional 29,565 shares in the last quarter. Massachusetts Financial Services Co. MA raised its holdings in TELUS by 2.1% during the third quarter. Massachusetts Financial Services Co. MA now owns 5,955,088 shares of the Wireless communications provider’s stock worth $212,120,000 after purchasing an additional 121,028 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Toronto Dominion Bank raised its holdings in TELUS by 80.3% during the fourth quarter. Toronto Dominion Bank now owns 5,945,257 shares of the Wireless communications provider’s stock worth $249,334,000 after purchasing an additional 2,647,801 shares in the last quarter. 49.34% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

TELUS Company Profile

TELUS Corporation, together with its subsidiaries, provides a range of telecommunications products and services in Canada. It operates through Wireless and Wireline segments. The company's telecommunications products and services comprise wireless and wireline voice and data services; data services, including Internet protocol; television services; hosting, managed information technology, and cloud-based services; healthcare solutions; customer care and business services; and home and business security solutions.

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