Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ) was downgraded by investment analysts at Vetr from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report issued to clients and investors on Thursday. They presently have a $58.40 price objective on the cell phone carrier’s stock. Vetr‘s price objective would suggest a potential upside of 11.11% from the company’s previous close.
Several other research firms have also issued reports on VZ. Citigroup Inc. lowered Verizon Communications to a “market perform” rating in a report on Wednesday, July 20th. Morgan Stanley downgraded Verizon Communications from an “overweight” rating to an “equal weight” rating in a research report on Tuesday, July 26th. RBC Capital Markets reissued a “buy” rating on shares of Verizon Communications in a research report on Monday, July 25th. JPMorgan Chase & Co. boosted their price target on Verizon Communications from $50.00 to $56.00 and gave the stock a “neutral” rating in a research report on Wednesday, July 27th. Finally, Bank of America Corp. reissued a “buy” rating on shares of Verizon Communications in a research report on Wednesday, June 8th. Twenty-three equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and nine have issued a buy rating to the company. Verizon Communications presently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $54.50.
Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) opened at 52.56 on Thursday. The company’s 50 day moving average price is $52.67 and its 200 day moving average price is $52.84. Verizon Communications has a 52-week low of $42.20 and a 52-week high of $56.95. The company has a market cap of $214.25 billion, a P/E ratio of 14.85 and a beta of 0.26.
Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) last released its earnings results on Tuesday, July 26th. The cell phone carrier reported $0.94 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $0.92 by $0.02. Verizon Communications had a return on equity of 87.41% and a net margin of 11.10%. The business had revenue of $30.53 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $30.95 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company posted $1.04 earnings per share. Verizon Communications’s revenue was down 5.3% on a year-over-year basis. Equities research analysts anticipate that Verizon Communications will post $3.89 EPS for the current fiscal year.
The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, November 1st. Shareholders of record on Friday, October 7th will be issued a dividend of $0.0125 per share. The ex-dividend date is Wednesday, October 5th. This represents a $0.05 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 0.10%. Verizon Communications’s payout ratio is currently 63.84%.
In other Verizon Communications news, EVP Craig L. Silliman sold 672 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Friday, August 26th. The stock was sold at an average price of $52.76, for a total transaction of $35,454.72. Following the completion of the sale, the executive vice president now directly owns 10,526 shares in the company, valued at approximately $555,351.76. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is accessible through this hyperlink. Company insiders own 0.10% of the company’s stock.
A number of hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of VZ. Taylor Wealth Management Partners boosted its position in Verizon Communications by 15.2% in the second quarter. Taylor Wealth Management Partners now owns 2,275 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock worth $127,000 after buying an additional 300 shares during the period. Lowe fs LLC boosted its position in Verizon Communications by 0.8% in the second quarter. Lowe fs LLC now owns 2,356 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock worth $132,000 after buying an additional 19 shares during the period. First National Bank Sioux Falls boosted its position in Verizon Communications by 8.7% in the second quarter. First National Bank Sioux Falls now owns 3,408 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock worth $190,000 after buying an additional 272 shares during the period. Fenimore Asset Management Inc. bought a new position in Verizon Communications during the second quarter worth about $202,000. Finally, Independence Advisors LLC bought a new position in Verizon Communications during the second quarter worth about $203,000. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 63.47% of the company’s stock.
About Verizon Communications
Verizon Communications Inc (Verizon) is a holding company. The Company, through its subsidiaries, provides communications, information and entertainment products and services to consumers, businesses and governmental agencies. The Company offers voice, data and video services and solutions on its wireless and wireline networks.
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