John W. Brooker & Co. CPAs reduced its stake in Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ) by 26.0% during the 1st quarter, according to the company in its most recent filing with the SEC. The fund owned 1,138 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock after selling 400 shares during the quarter. John W. Brooker & Co. CPAs’ holdings in Verizon Communications were worth $61,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.
Other hedge funds also recently modified their holdings of the company. Executive Wealth Management LLC lifted its holdings in Verizon Communications by 11.5% in the third quarter. Executive Wealth Management LLC now owns 77,065 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock worth $4,650,000 after purchasing an additional 7,968 shares during the period. Ilmarinen Mutual Pension Insurance Co acquired a new stake in Verizon Communications in the third quarter worth about $25,152,000. Colony Group LLC lifted its holdings in Verizon Communications by 3.1% in the third quarter. Colony Group LLC now owns 198,258 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock worth $11,967,000 after purchasing an additional 6,037 shares during the period. UMA Financial Services Inc. acquired a new stake in Verizon Communications in the 3rd quarter valued at about $221,000. Finally, Voya Financial Advisors Inc. lifted its holdings in Verizon Communications by 2.8% in the 3rd quarter. Voya Financial Advisors Inc. now owns 188,223 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock valued at $11,350,000 after acquiring an additional 5,125 shares during the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 66.75% of the company’s stock.
VZ has been the subject of a number of research analyst reports. Raymond James raised shares of Verizon Communications from a “market perform” rating to an “outperform” rating and set a $58.00 price target for the company in a report on Monday, March 16th. New Street Research reissued a “buy” rating on shares of Verizon Communications in a report on Friday, January 10th. Deutsche Bank initiated coverage on shares of Verizon Communications in a report on Wednesday, January 22nd. They issued a “hold” rating and a $63.00 price target for the company. Tigress Financial reissued a “hold” rating on shares of Verizon Communications in a report on Thursday, January 23rd. Finally, Cowen raised shares of Verizon Communications from a “market perform” rating to an “outperform” rating and set a $61.00 price target for the company in a report on Monday, March 2nd. Twelve research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, seven have assigned a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the company. Verizon Communications currently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $62.39.
Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) last issued its 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). The business had revenue of $34.78 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $34.62 billion. Verizon Communications had a net margin of 14.61% and a return on equity of 33.39%. Verizon Communications’s revenue for the quarter was up 1.4% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company earned $1.12 EPS. As a group, analysts forecast that Verizon Communications Inc. will post 4.92 EPS for the current fiscal year.
The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, May 1st. Stockholders of record on Monday, April 13th will be issued 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 dividend yield of 4.50%. Verizon Communications’s dividend payout ratio is 51.14%.
Verizon Communications declared that its Board of Directors has authorized a share repurchase plan on Thursday, February 6th that allows the company to repurchase 100,000,000 outstanding shares. This repurchase authorization allows the cell phone carrier to reacquire shares of its stock through open market purchases. Stock repurchase plans are often a sign that the company’s board of directors believes its shares are undervalued.
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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