Wrapmanager Inc. decreased its position in shares of Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ) by 5.9% during the first quarter, according to its most recent filing with the SEC. The firm owned 25,752 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock after selling 1,608 shares during the period. Wrapmanager Inc.’s holdings in Verizon Communications were worth $1,384,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.
Other hedge funds have also recently bought and sold shares of the company. Fiera Capital Corp grew its holdings in shares of Verizon Communications by 40.7% during the 4th quarter. Fiera Capital Corp now owns 6,916 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock worth $424,000 after acquiring an additional 2,001 shares during the period. Banque Cantonale Vaudoise bought a new stake in shares of Verizon Communications in the 4th quarter worth approximately $12,636,000. Benjamin Edwards Inc. boosted its position in shares of Verizon Communications by 7.2% in the 4th quarter. Benjamin Edwards Inc. now owns 3,480 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock worth $214,000 after purchasing an additional 234 shares in the last quarter. Essex Private Wealth Management LLC bought a new position in Verizon Communications in the 4th quarter valued at approximately $955,000. Finally, NS Partners Ltd lifted its position in Verizon Communications by 11.0% in the 4th quarter. NS Partners Ltd now owns 142,127 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock valued at $8,727,000 after acquiring an additional 14,127 shares in the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 65.98% of the company’s stock.
VZ has been the topic of several analyst reports. JPMorgan Chase & Co. lowered their price objective on Verizon Communications from $63.00 to $62.00 and set a “neutral” rating on the stock in a research report on Friday, April 17th. Raymond James upped their price objective on Verizon Communications from $58.00 to $61.00 and gave the company an “outperform” rating in a research report on Monday, April 27th. Citigroup boosted their target price on shares of Verizon Communications from $55.00 to $60.00 and gave the company a “neutral” rating in a research note on Monday, April 27th. Nomura Securities decreased their target price on shares of Verizon Communications from $65.00 to $61.00 and set a “neutral” rating for the company in a research note on Monday, March 30th. Finally, Oppenheimer started coverage on Verizon Communications in a research note on Friday, April 24th. They issued a “buy” rating and a $70.00 price target for the company. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, sixteen have given a hold rating, six have issued a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the company. The company has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $61.44.
Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Friday, April 24th. The cell phone carrier reported $1.26 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.22 by $0.04. The business had revenue of $31.81 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $32.37 billion. Verizon Communications had a net margin of 14.00% and a return on equity of 33.26%. The firm’s quarterly revenue was down 1.0% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter last year, the firm earned $1.20 earnings per share. On average, sell-side analysts predict that Verizon Communications Inc. will post 4.77 EPS for the current year.
The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, May 1st. Shareholders of record on Monday, April 13th were paid a $0.615 dividend. This represents a $2.46 annualized dividend and a yield of 4.54%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Thursday, April 9th. Verizon Communications’s payout ratio is currently 51.14%.
Verizon Communications declared that its Board of Directors has approved a share buyback program on Thursday, February 6th that authorizes the company to buyback 100,000,000 outstanding shares. This buyback authorization authorizes the cell phone carrier to repurchase shares of its stock through open market purchases. Shares buyback programs are usually an indication that the company’s board believes its stock is undervalued.
In other news, SVP Anthony T. Skiadas sold 10,744 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, May 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $57.10, for a total transaction of $613,482.40. Following the transaction, the senior vice president now directly owns 27,501 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $1,570,307.10. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is accessible through this hyperlink. Company insiders own 0.07% of the company’s stock.
Verizon Communications Company 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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