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Shares of Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) saw a significant increase in short interest during the month of July. As of July 31st, there was short interest totalling 40,604,743 shares, an increase of 8.9% from the July 15th total of 37,276,496 shares, American Banking and Market News reports. Based on an average daily volume of 14,832,169 shares, the days-to-cover ratio is currently 2.7 days. Approximately 1.0% of the company’s shares are short sold.

VZ has been the subject of a number of recent research reports. Analysts at Macquarie downgraded shares of Verizon Communications from an “outperform” rating to a “neutral” rating in a research note on Wednesday, July 30th. They now have a $53.00 price target on the stock, up previously from $52.00. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Separately, analysts at FBR Capital Markets upgraded shares of Verizon Communications from a “market perform” rating to an “outperform” rating in a research note on Thursday, July 24th. They now have a $57.00 price target on the stock, up previously from $55.00. Finally, analysts at Raymond James reiterated an “outperform” rating on shares of Verizon Communications in a research note on Wednesday, July 23rd. They now have a $55.00 price target on the stock, up previously from $54.00. Six equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and twenty-two have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The company has an average rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $53.23.

Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) opened at 49.00 on Friday. Verizon Communications has a 1-year low of $45.08 and a 1-year high of $53.66. The stock’s 50-day moving average is $49.97 and its 200-day moving average is $48.35. The company has a market cap of $203.1 billion and a price-to-earnings ratio of 10.55.

Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) last announced its earnings results on Tuesday, July 22nd. The company reported $0.91 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the analysts’ consensus estimate of $0.90 by $0.01. The company had revenue of $31.50 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $31.10 billion. During the same quarter last year, the company posted $0.73 earnings per share. Verizon Communications’s revenue was up 5.7% compared to the same quarter last year. Analysts expect that Verizon Communications will post $3.55 EPS for the current fiscal year.

Verizon Communications Inc (NYSE:VZ) is a holding company.

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