Cidel Asset Management Inc. grew its stake in Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ) by 8.4% in the 4th quarter, according to its most recent 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The institutional investor owned 26,134 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock after acquiring an additional 2,025 shares during the period. Cidel Asset Management Inc.’s holdings in Verizon Communications were worth $1,605,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.
Several other hedge funds and other institutional investors also recently made changes to their positions in VZ. Lionsbridge Wealth Management LLC bought a new position in Verizon Communications in the fourth quarter valued at approximately $32,000. Permanens Capital L.P. bought a new stake in Verizon Communications in the 4th quarter worth about $37,000. Cedar Mountain Advisors LLC bought a new stake in Verizon Communications in the 4th quarter worth about $45,000. Candriam Luxembourg S.C.A. grew its position in Verizon Communications by 10.0% in the 4th quarter. Candriam Luxembourg S.C.A. now owns 816,546 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock worth $50,000 after purchasing an additional 74,287 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Westchester Capital Management Inc. grew its position in Verizon Communications by 428.6% in the 4th quarter. Westchester Capital Management Inc. now owns 925 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock worth $57,000 after purchasing an additional 750 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors own 66.75% of the company’s stock.
A number of equities research analysts have issued reports on the stock. Tigress Financial reaffirmed a “hold” rating on shares of Verizon Communications in a research report on Thursday, January 23rd. Zacks Investment Research cut shares of Verizon Communications from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating and set a $62.00 price target on the stock. in a research note on Saturday, January 11th. Cowen upgraded shares of Verizon Communications from a “market perform” rating to an “outperform” rating and set a $61.00 price target on the stock in a research note on Monday, March 2nd. ValuEngine upgraded shares of Verizon Communications from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Friday, February 21st. Finally, Moffett Nathanson restated a “hold” rating and set a $58.00 price target on shares of Verizon Communications in a research note on Thursday, January 30th. Twelve equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and eight have given a buy rating to the company. Verizon Communications currently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $63.10.
Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) last released its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, January 30th. The cell phone carrier reported $1.13 earnings per share for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.15 by ($0.02). Verizon Communications had a net margin of 14.61% and a return on equity of 33.39%. The firm had revenue of $34.78 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $34.62 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the business posted $1.12 earnings per share. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up 1.4% on a year-over-year basis. Equities research analysts forecast that Verizon Communications Inc. will post 4.94 EPS for the current year.
Verizon Communications announced that its board has initiated a share repurchase plan on Thursday, February 6th that authorizes the company to repurchase 100,000,000 outstanding shares. This repurchase authorization authorizes the cell phone carrier to buy shares of its stock through open market purchases. Shares repurchase plans are generally a sign that the company’s board believes its shares are undervalued.
The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, May 1st. Investors of record on Monday, April 13th will be paid a $0.615 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, April 9th. This represents a $2.46 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 4.81%. Verizon Communications’s dividend payout ratio is currently 51.14%.
About Verizon Communications
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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