TELUS Co. (NYSE:TU) (TSE:T) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report issued to clients and investors on Friday.

According to Zacks, “TELUS continues to benefit from increased penetration of smartphones, higher average revenue per unit, accelerating wireless data services and an increasing number of wireline fiber optic networks. The company has also consolidated its foothold in the IoT market  through the TELUS Global IoT Connectivity platform and is focusing on its PureFibre network business. However, TELUS faces fierce competition in both the wireless and wireline segments. At the wireless segment, it competes against Rogers Communications and Bell Canada and also faces threat from small regional carriers. Cable TV operators such as Shaw Communications poses threat on the wireline side. Meanwhile, over the past three months, shares of TELUS grew 0.50% but failed to beat the Zacks categorized 'Diversified Communication Services' industry’s gain of 5.25%. “

Several other analysts have also commented on the stock. Barclays PLC restated an “overweight” rating and issued a $38.00 price objective (up from $36.00) on shares of TELUS in a report on Thursday, February 16th. National Bank Financial upgraded shares of TELUS from a “sector perform” rating to an “outperform” rating in a report on Tuesday, February 7th. Finally, Canaccord Genuity restated a “buy” rating and issued a $47.00 price objective on shares of TELUS in a report on Monday, February 6th. Four research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and four have assigned a buy rating to the company. The company has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $40.33.

Analyst Recommendations for TELUS (NYSE:TU)

TELUS (NYSE:TU) opened at 31.97 on Friday. The stock has a 50 day moving average price of $32.75 and a 200 day moving average price of $32.39. The company has a market capitalization of $18.86 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 20.94 and a beta of 0.89. TELUS has a 12-month low of $30.31 and a 12-month high of $34.12.

TELUS (NYSE:TU) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, February 9th. The company reported $0.40 EPS for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.44 by $0.04. TELUS had a return on equity of 19.03% and a net margin of 9.58%. The company earned $3.30 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $3.22 billion. During the same quarter last year, the business earned $0.34 earnings per share. The business’s quarterly revenue was up 2.7% on a year-over-year basis. On average, analysts expect that TELUS will post $2.04 EPS for the current year.

The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, April 3rd. Shareholders of record on Friday, March 10th will be issued a $0.3668 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Wednesday, March 8th. This represents a $1.47 annualized dividend and a yield of 4.59%. TELUS’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 91.67%.

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Hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of the company. Norges Bank bought a new stake in shares of TELUS during the fourth quarter valued at approximately $42,854,000. Assenagon Asset Management S.A. bought a new stake in shares of TELUS during the fourth quarter valued at approximately $201,000. Jarislowsky Fraser Ltd raised its stake in shares of TELUS by 0.9% in the fourth quarter. Jarislowsky Fraser Ltd now owns 431,351 shares of the company’s stock valued at $13,750,000 after buying an additional 4,033 shares during the period. Numeric Investors LLC raised its stake in shares of TELUS by 14.3% in the fourth quarter. Numeric Investors LLC now owns 92,500 shares of the company’s stock valued at $2,949,000 after buying an additional 11,600 shares during the period. Finally, DZ BANK AG Deutsche Zentral Genossenschafts Bank Frankfurt am Main bought a new stake in shares of TELUS during the fourth quarter valued at approximately $36,439,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 54.15% of the company’s stock.

TELUS Company Profile

TELUS Corporation (TELUS) is a telecommunications company. The Company provides a range of telecommunications services and products, including wireless and wireline voice and data. Its data services include Internet protocol, television (TV), hosting, managed information technology and cloud-based services, and certain healthcare solutions.

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