AlphaCrest Capital Management LLC Sells 69,791 Shares of BCE Inc. (NYSE:BCE)

AlphaCrest Capital Management LLC lessened its stake in shares of BCE Inc. (NYSE:BCE) (TSE:BCE) by 28.0% in the first quarter, according to its most recent Form 13F filing with the SEC. The fund owned 179,256 shares of the utilities provider’s stock after selling 69,791 shares during the period. BCE comprises about 0.5% of AlphaCrest Capital Management LLC’s holdings, making the stock its 26th biggest position. AlphaCrest Capital Management LLC’s holdings in BCE were worth $8,092,000 as of its most recent filing with the SEC.

A number of other hedge funds and other institutional investors have also recently made changes to their positions in BCE. Larson Financial Group LLC grew its stake in shares of BCE by 67,500.0% during the 1st quarter. Larson Financial Group LLC now owns 676 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $31,000 after acquiring an additional 675 shares during the period. RMR Wealth Builders bought a new stake in shares of BCE in the 1st quarter worth approximately $31,000. Exchange Traded Concepts LLC acquired a new stake in BCE in the 1st quarter worth approximately $32,000. Jackson Grant Investment Advisers Inc. acquired a new position in BCE during the first quarter valued at approximately $33,000. Finally, NEXT Financial Group Inc boosted its holdings in shares of BCE by 45.4% in the 4th quarter. NEXT Financial Group Inc now owns 797 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $34,000 after purchasing an additional 249 shares in the last quarter. 45.34% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

Shares of NYSE BCE traded down $0.28 during midday trading on Wednesday, reaching $49.39. 20,170 shares of the company’s stock traded hands, compared to its average volume of 1,395,190. The stock has a market cap of $44.69 billion, a P/E ratio of 23.91, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 4.19 and a beta of 0.44. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.36, a quick ratio of 0.78 and a current ratio of 0.83. BCE Inc. has a one year low of $39.91 and a one year high of $50.90. The stock’s 50 day moving average is $48.74.

BCE (NYSE:BCE) (TSE:BCE) last announced its earnings results on Wednesday, April 28th. The utilities provider reported $0.78 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.58 by $0.20. BCE had a net margin of 11.23% and a return on equity of 16.21%. The company had revenue of $5.71 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $5.63 billion. During the same period last year, the firm earned $0.80 earnings per share. BCE’s revenue was up .5% compared to the same quarter last year. Equities analysts predict that BCE Inc. will post 2.59 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, July 15th. Shareholders of record on Tuesday, June 15th will be paid a dividend of $0.7072 per share. This is a positive change from BCE’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.68. The ex-dividend date is Monday, June 14th. This represents a $2.83 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 5.73%. BCE’s dividend payout ratio is presently 128.89%.

Several analysts have weighed in on BCE shares. Zacks Investment Research downgraded BCE from a “hold” rating to a “strong sell” rating and set a $40.00 price target on the stock. in a research note on Thursday, March 11th. Desjardins boosted their price objective on shares of BCE from $61.00 to $62.00 and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research report on Monday, May 3rd. Morgan Stanley raised BCE from an “underweight” rating to an “equal weight” rating and raised their target price for the stock from $55.00 to $58.00 in a research report on Friday, March 5th. Barclays reiterated a “hold” rating and set a $57.00 price target on shares of BCE in a research report on Sunday, May 2nd. Finally, Canaccord Genuity boosted their price objective on shares of BCE from $58.00 to $59.00 and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a report on Friday, April 30th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, six have given a hold rating and three have issued a buy rating to the company. The company has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $58.15.

About BCE

BCE Inc, a telecommunications and media company, provides wireless, wireline, Internet, and television (TV) services to residential, business, and wholesale customers in Canada. It operates through three segments: Bell Wireless, Bell Wireline, and Bell Media. The Bell Wireless segment offers wireless voice and data communications products and services.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for BCE (NYSE:BCE)

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