BCE Inc. (NYSE:BCE) Holdings Boosted by Lazard Asset Management LLC

Lazard Asset Management LLC boosted its holdings in BCE Inc. (NYSE:BCEGet Rating) (TSE:BCE) by 18.7% during the second quarter, according to its most recent Form 13F filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission. The fund owned 7,120 shares of the utilities provider’s stock after acquiring an additional 1,120 shares during the period. Lazard Asset Management LLC’s holdings in BCE were worth $350,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.

A number of other large investors have also recently bought and sold shares of BCE. SG Americas Securities LLC bought a new position in BCE in the first quarter worth about $313,000. Signaturefd LLC raised its holdings in shares of BCE by 4.7% during the first quarter. Signaturefd LLC now owns 6,943 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $385,000 after buying an additional 313 shares during the last quarter. Steward Partners Investment Advisory LLC raised its holdings in shares of BCE by 10.8% during the first quarter. Steward Partners Investment Advisory LLC now owns 8,250 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $458,000 after buying an additional 802 shares during the last quarter. Atria Investments LLC raised its holdings in shares of BCE by 9.9% during the first quarter. Atria Investments LLC now owns 52,491 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $2,911,000 after buying an additional 4,733 shares during the last quarter. Finally, National Asset Management Inc. bought a new stake in shares of BCE during the first quarter valued at approximately $272,000. Institutional investors own 43.83% of the company’s stock.

BCE Trading Up 1.8 %

BCE stock opened at $47.34 on Friday. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.40, a quick ratio of 0.54 and a current ratio of 0.60. The firm has a market cap of $43.17 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 19.48, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 3.86 and a beta of 0.55. BCE Inc. has a 1 year low of $39.88 and a 1 year high of $59.34. The firm’s 50 day moving average price is $44.79 and its two-hundred day moving average price is $48.57.

BCE Cuts Dividend

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, January 16th. Shareholders of record on Thursday, December 15th will be given a $0.675 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Wednesday, December 14th. This represents a $2.70 annualized dividend and a yield of 5.70%. BCE’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 114.81%.

Wall Street Analysts Forecast Growth

A number of equities research analysts have recently weighed in on the company. Barclays cut their price target on BCE from $51.00 to $48.00 and set an “equal weight” rating on the stock in a report on Monday, October 10th. Royal Bank of Canada lifted their price target on BCE from C$63.00 to C$64.00 in a report on Friday, November 4th. National Bank Financial cut their price target on BCE from C$71.00 to C$68.00 in a report on Thursday, September 29th. TD Securities raised their price objective on shares of BCE from C$62.00 to C$64.00 in a research note on Friday, November 4th. Finally, BMO Capital Markets lowered their price objective on shares of BCE from C$75.00 to C$68.00 and set an “outperform” rating on the stock in a research note on Friday, November 4th. Four analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and three have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. According to MarketBeat.com, BCE currently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $64.18.

BCE Profile

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

Further Reading

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for BCE (NYSE:BCE)

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