Youngs Advisory Group Inc. raised its holdings in shares of Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ – Get Rating) by 3.3% during the second quarter, according to its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The firm owned 8,888 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock after acquiring an additional 280 shares during the quarter. Youngs Advisory Group Inc.’s holdings in Verizon Communications were worth $451,000 as of its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).
Other hedge funds have also recently made changes to their positions in the company. Norges Bank purchased a new position in Verizon Communications in the fourth quarter worth $1,884,917,000. BlackRock Inc. grew its position in Verizon Communications by 4.8% in the first quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 304,700,845 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock worth $15,521,461,000 after acquiring an additional 13,959,954 shares in the last quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. grew its position in Verizon Communications by 2.7% in the first quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 330,221,086 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock worth $16,821,462,000 after acquiring an additional 8,570,818 shares in the last quarter. Fisher Asset Management LLC grew its position in Verizon Communications by 71.7% in the first quarter. Fisher Asset Management LLC now owns 16,787,501 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock worth $855,155,000 after acquiring an additional 7,008,579 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Renaissance Technologies LLC grew its position in Verizon Communications by 81.3% in the first quarter. Renaissance Technologies LLC now owns 10,604,493 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock worth $540,193,000 after acquiring an additional 4,756,222 shares in the last quarter. 62.83% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.
Wall Street Analyst Weigh In
Several research analysts recently issued reports on VZ shares. Moffett Nathanson lowered shares of Verizon Communications from a “market perform” rating to an “underperform” rating and set a $41.00 target price for the company. in a research report on Thursday, August 18th. Morgan Stanley cut their target price on shares of Verizon Communications from $60.00 to $58.00 and set an “equal weight” rating for the company in a research report on Monday, July 25th. JPMorgan Chase & Co. reissued a “hold” rating and issued a $57.00 price target on shares of Verizon Communications in a research note on Friday, June 24th. Bank of America downgraded shares of Verizon Communications from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating and lowered their price target for the stock from $64.00 to $51.00 in a research note on Thursday, July 28th. Finally, Barclays downgraded shares of Verizon Communications from an “overweight” rating to an “equal weight” rating in a research note on Friday, July 22nd. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, fifteen have assigned a hold rating and four have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. According to MarketBeat.com, Verizon Communications currently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $55.61.
Verizon Communications Price Performance
Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ – Get Rating) last released its quarterly earnings results on Friday, July 22nd. The cell phone carrier reported $1.31 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.32 by ($0.01). Verizon Communications had a return on equity of 26.95% and a net margin of 15.48%. The company had revenue of $33.79 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $33.77 billion. During the same period in the previous year, the company earned $1.37 earnings per share. Verizon Communications’s quarterly revenue was up .1% on a year-over-year basis. On average, sell-side analysts forecast that Verizon Communications Inc. will post 5.19 EPS for the current year.
Verizon Communications Increases Dividend
The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, November 1st. Shareholders of record on Friday, October 7th will be issued a $0.6525 dividend. This represents a $2.61 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 6.54%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, October 6th. This is a boost from Verizon Communications’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.64. Verizon Communications’s dividend payout ratio is 51.30%.
Insiders Place Their Bets
In other Verizon Communications news, EVP Craig L. Silliman sold 1,558 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, July 5th. The shares were sold at an average price of $51.42, for a total value of $80,112.36. Following the sale, the executive vice president now owns 33,403 shares in the company, valued at $1,717,582.26. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available through the SEC website. Corporate insiders own 0.10% of the company’s stock.
Verizon Communications Profile
Verizon Communications Inc, through its subsidiaries, offers communications, technology, information, and entertainment products and services to consumers, businesses, and governmental entities worldwide. Its Consumer segment provides postpaid and prepaid service plans; internet access on notebook computers and tablets; wireless equipment, including smartphones and other handsets; and wireless-enabled internet devices, such as tablets, and other wireless-enabled connected devices comprising smart watches.
- Get a free copy of the StockNews.com research report on Verizon Communications (VZ)
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