Traders Buy Verizon Communications Inc. (VZ) on Weakness
Investors bought shares of Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ) on weakness during trading on Thursday. $142.98 million flowed into the stock on the tick-up and $90.54 million flowed out of the stock on the tick-down, for a money net flow of $52.44 million into the stock. Of all stocks tracked, Verizon Communications had the 8th highest net in-flow for the day. Verizon Communications traded down ($0.46) for the day and closed at $54.86
Several brokerages recently commented on VZ. Argus reaffirmed a “buy” rating on shares of Verizon Communications in a research note on Saturday, April 9th. Moffett Nathanson cut shares of Verizon Communications from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Saturday, April 2nd. Vetr raised shares of Verizon Communications from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $55.28 price objective for the company in a research note on Thursday, April 7th. FBR & Co reaffirmed a “buy” rating and set a $54.00 price objective on shares of Verizon Communications in a research note on Saturday, April 23rd. Finally, Jefferies Group reaffirmed a “hold” rating on shares of Verizon Communications in a research note on Saturday, May 14th. Twenty-two analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, eight have given a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the company. The company currently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $54.14.
The company’s 50 day moving average is $54.88 and its 200 day moving average is $51.81. The stock has a market cap of $223.61 billion and a P/E ratio of 15.50.
Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, July 26th. The cell phone carrier reported $0.94 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.92 by $0.02. During the same quarter in the prior year, the business earned $1.04 earnings per share. The company earned $30.53 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $30.95 billion. The firm’s quarterly revenue was down 5.3% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, analysts predict that Verizon Communications Inc. will post $3.90 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.
The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, August 1st. Stockholders of record on Friday, July 8th will be given a dividend of $0.565 per share. The ex-dividend date is Wednesday, July 6th. This represents a $2.26 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 4.12%.
In other news, EVP Craig L. Silliman sold 672 shares of Verizon Communications stock in a transaction on Friday, June 24th. The stock was sold at an average price of $54.56, for a total transaction of $36,664.32. Following the completion of the sale, the executive vice president now directly owns 11,870 shares in the company, valued at $647,627.20. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through the SEC website.
Several hedge funds have added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Agran Libbie increased its stake in Verizon Communications by 9,922.0% in the fourth quarter. Agran Libbie now owns 16,100,284 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock valued at $7,442,000 after buying an additional 15,939,635 shares during the period. Boston Partners increased its stake in Verizon Communications by 35.7% in the fourth quarter. Boston Partners now owns 13,662,183 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock valued at $631,466,000 after buying an additional 3,590,873 shares during the period. Victory Capital Management Inc. increased its stake in Verizon Communications by 1,464.9% in the fourth quarter. Victory Capital Management Inc. now owns 1,644,740 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock valued at $76,020,000 after buying an additional 1,539,635 shares during the period. Eaton Vance Management increased its stake in Verizon Communications by 21.2% in the fourth quarter. Eaton Vance Management now owns 5,862,823 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock valued at $270,980,000 after buying an additional 1,024,873 shares during the period. Finally, Dimensional Fund Advisors LP increased its stake in Verizon Communications by 8.2% in the fourth quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 12,155,993 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock valued at $561,919,000 after buying an additional 922,163 shares during the period.
Verizon Communications Inc (Verizon) is a holding company. The Company, through its subsidiaries, provides communications, information and entertainment products and services to consumers, businesses and governmental agencies. The Company offers voice, data and video services and solutions on its wireless and wireline networks.