Zurich Insurance Group Ltd FI trimmed its holdings in shares of Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ) by 20.1% during the 2nd quarter, according to its most recent disclosure with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The fund owned 660,528 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock after selling 166,102 shares during the quarter. Verizon Communications comprises 0.7% of Zurich Insurance Group Ltd FI’s portfolio, making the stock its 28th biggest holding. Zurich Insurance Group Ltd FI’s holdings in Verizon Communications were worth $37,736,000 as of its most recent SEC filing.
Other institutional investors have also bought and sold shares of the company. Essex Savings Bank acquired a new stake in Verizon Communications during the fourth quarter worth about $751,000. BigSur Wealth Management LLC lifted its stake in Verizon Communications by 29.2% during the fourth quarter. BigSur Wealth Management LLC now owns 23,167 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock worth $1,302,000 after purchasing an additional 5,237 shares during the period. CFO4Life Group LLC lifted its stake in Verizon Communications by 21.5% during the fourth quarter. CFO4Life Group LLC now owns 6,791 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock worth $382,000 after purchasing an additional 1,203 shares during the period. Janney Capital Management LLC lifted its stake in Verizon Communications by 58.1% during the fourth quarter. Janney Capital Management LLC now owns 523,179 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock worth $29,413,000 after purchasing an additional 192,278 shares during the period. Finally, State Treasurer State of Michigan lifted its stake in Verizon Communications by 15.2% during the fourth quarter. State Treasurer State of Michigan now owns 1,878,015 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock worth $105,582,000 after purchasing an additional 247,500 shares during the period. 65.67% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.
In other news, CEO Tami A. Erwin sold 17,000 shares of Verizon Communications stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, August 29th. The shares were sold at an average price of $57.75, for a total value of $981,750.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief executive officer now owns 853 shares in the company, valued at $49,260.75. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through this hyperlink. Also, EVP Craig L. Silliman sold 1,349 shares of Verizon Communications stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, June 26th. The shares were sold at an average price of $58.15, for a total transaction of $78,444.35. Following the completion of the transaction, the executive vice president now owns 25,379 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $1,475,788.85. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold 21,047 shares of company stock valued at $1,212,038 in the last quarter. 0.03% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.
Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) last posted its earnings results on Thursday, August 1st. The cell phone carrier reported $1.23 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.20 by $0.03. Verizon Communications had a net margin of 12.08% and a return on equity of 34.91%. The company had revenue of $32.07 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $32.42 billion. During the same quarter in the previous year, the company posted $1.20 earnings per share. Verizon Communications’s quarterly revenue was down .4% compared to the same quarter last year. Analysts forecast that Verizon Communications Inc. will post 4.81 EPS for the current year.
The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, November 1st. Stockholders of record on Thursday, October 10th will be paid a $0.615 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Wednesday, October 9th. This represents a $2.46 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 4.08%. This is a boost from Verizon Communications’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.60. Verizon Communications’s payout ratio is 51.17%.
A number of brokerages have commented on VZ. Oppenheimer upgraded shares of Verizon Communications from a “market perform” rating to an “outperform” rating and set a $70.00 price target for the company in a research note on Tuesday, August 27th. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Verizon Communications from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $62.00 price target for the company in a research note on Monday, September 2nd. Citigroup set a $62.00 price target on shares of Verizon Communications and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a research note on Tuesday, September 10th. Finally, UBS Group cut shares of Verizon Communications from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating and set a $57.70 price target for the company. in a research note on Thursday, May 30th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Eight investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and five have given a buy rating to the stock. The stock has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $60.96.
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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