CHURCHILL MANAGEMENT Corp raised its holdings in Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ – Get Rating) by 4.3% during the second quarter, HoldingsChannel reports. The firm owned 168,489 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock after buying an additional 6,892 shares during the period. CHURCHILL MANAGEMENT Corp’s holdings in Verizon Communications were worth $8,551,000 as of its most recent filing with the SEC.
A number of other institutional investors also recently bought and sold shares of VZ. Rinkey Investments purchased a new stake in shares of Verizon Communications in the fourth quarter valued at about $27,000. Cordant Inc. purchased a new stake in shares of Verizon Communications in the first quarter valued at about $30,000. Lansing Street Advisors purchased a new stake in shares of Verizon Communications in the first quarter valued at about $35,000. Conrad Siegel Investment Advisors Inc. purchased a new stake in shares of Verizon Communications in the first quarter valued at about $36,000. Finally, Gibson Wealth Advisors LLC purchased a new stake in shares of Verizon Communications in the fourth quarter valued at about $37,000. 62.83% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.
Wall Street Analysts Forecast Growth
Several brokerages have issued reports on VZ. Moffett Nathanson downgraded shares of Verizon Communications from a “market perform” rating to an “underperform” rating and set a $41.00 price target on the stock. in a report on Thursday, August 18th. Bank of America downgraded shares of Verizon Communications from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating and reduced their price target for the company from $64.00 to $51.00 in a report on Thursday, July 28th. Wells Fargo & Company reduced their price target on shares of Verizon Communications from $58.00 to $52.00 and set an “equal weight” rating on the stock in a report on Friday, July 8th. UBS Group reduced their price target on shares of Verizon Communications from $57.00 to $47.00 and set a “neutral” rating on the stock in a report on Monday, July 25th. Finally, Royal Bank of Canada cut their price objective on shares of Verizon Communications from $57.00 to $54.00 and set a “sector perform” rating for the company in a research report on Wednesday, June 22nd. Two analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, fifteen have assigned a hold rating and five have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. Based on data from MarketBeat, the company currently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $55.68.
Verizon Communications Stock Performance
Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ – Get Rating) last released its quarterly earnings data on Friday, July 22nd. The cell phone carrier reported $1.31 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $1.32 by ($0.01). Verizon Communications had a return on equity of 26.95% and a net margin of 15.48%. The business had revenue of $33.79 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $33.77 billion. During the same period in the previous year, the company earned $1.37 EPS. Verizon Communications’s revenue was up .1% on a year-over-year basis. Sell-side analysts anticipate 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. Stockholders of record on Friday, October 7th will be given a $0.6525 dividend. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, October 6th. This represents a $2.61 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 6.33%. This is a positive change from Verizon Communications’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.64. Verizon Communications’s dividend payout ratio is presently 51.30%.
Insider Transactions at Verizon Communications
In other news, EVP Craig L. Silliman sold 1,558 shares of the stock in a transaction on Tuesday, July 5th. The shares were sold at an average price of $51.42, for a total value of $80,112.36. Following the completion of the sale, the executive vice president now owns 33,403 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $1,717,582.26. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this hyperlink. Company insiders own 0.10% of the company’s stock.
Verizon Communications Company 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.
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