Duff & Phelps Investment Management Co. lowered its stake in BCE, Inc. (NYSE:BCE) (TSE:BCE) by 3.3% during the second quarter, Holdings Channel reports. The institutional investor owned 1,867,800 shares of the utilities provider’s stock after selling 63,327 shares during the period. BCE makes up 1.2% of Duff & Phelps Investment Management Co.’s holdings, making the stock its 21st largest position. Duff & Phelps Investment Management Co.’s holdings in BCE were worth $84,126,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.

Several other hedge funds have also recently made changes to their positions in the company. Schroder Investment Management Group raised its stake in shares of BCE by 311.1% in the first quarter. Schroder Investment Management Group now owns 4,026,494 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $236,637,000 after buying an additional 3,047,060 shares in the last quarter. Canada Pension Plan Investment Board raised its stake in shares of BCE by 3,184.5% in the second quarter. Canada Pension Plan Investment Board now owns 1,540,242 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $69,262,000 after buying an additional 1,493,348 shares in the last quarter. Bank of America Corp DE raised its stake in shares of BCE by 25.9% in the first quarter. Bank of America Corp DE now owns 6,384,703 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $282,651,000 after buying an additional 1,311,603 shares in the last quarter. OMERS ADMINISTRATION Corp purchased a new stake in shares of BCE during the first quarter valued at about $43,100,000. Finally, Renaissance Technologies LLC raised its stake in shares of BCE by 78.6% in the first quarter. Renaissance Technologies LLC now owns 2,159,371 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $95,610,000 after buying an additional 950,073 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 43.99% of the company’s stock.

Shares of BCE, Inc. (BCE) opened at 46.14 on Friday. The company’s 50-day moving average price is $45.93 and its 200-day moving average price is $44.94. BCE, Inc. has a 52-week low of $41.83 and a 52-week high of $49.03. The firm has a market capitalization of $41.54 billion, a P/E ratio of 17.87 and a beta of 0.36.

BCE (NYSE:BCE) (TSE:BCE) last released its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, August 3rd. The utilities provider reported $0.65 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.67 by $0.02. The company had revenue of $5.70 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $5.65 billion. BCE had a net margin of 12.85% and a return on equity of 21.08%. The firm’s revenue was up 6.7% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the prior year, the company earned $0.94 earnings per share. On average, equities research analysts expect that BCE, Inc. will post $2.65 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Sunday, October 15th. Shareholders of record on Friday, September 15th will be issued a $0.575 dividend. This is a boost from BCE’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.53. This represents a $2.30 annualized dividend and a yield of 4.98%. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, September 14th. BCE’s dividend payout ratio is currently 87.30%.

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Several analysts recently issued reports on BCE shares. Zacks Investment Research lowered BCE from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Wednesday, May 3rd. BidaskClub lowered BCE from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Thursday, June 22nd. Canaccord Genuity set a $60.00 price objective on BCE and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a report on Tuesday, May 16th. Argus started coverage on BCE in a report on Tuesday, July 18th. They set a “hold” rating for the company. Finally, Barclays PLC increased their price objective on BCE from $47.00 to $51.00 and gave the stock an “overweight” rating in a report on Friday, August 4th. Five analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and five have assigned a buy rating to the company. The stock currently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $55.80.

About BCE

BCE Inc is a communications company. The Company’s segments include Bell Wireless, Bell Wireline and Bell Media. Its Bell Wireless segment provides wireless voice and data communications products and services to its residential, small and medium-sized business and large enterprise customers across Canada.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for BCE (NYSE:BCE)

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