Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ) has been given a consensus recommendation of “Hold” by the thirty-one brokerages that are covering the stock, Marketbeat reports. Two analysts have rated the stock with a sell recommendation, twenty-two have given a hold recommendation, five have issued a buy recommendation and one has given a strong buy recommendation to the company. The average 1 year price objective among brokers that have updated their coverage on the stock in the last year is $51.10.

A number of analysts have recently weighed in on the stock. TheStreet upgraded shares of Verizon Communications from a “c+” rating to a “b-” rating in a research note on Tuesday, August 8th. BidaskClub raised shares of Verizon Communications from a “strong sell” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Monday, July 31st. Royal Bank Of Canada increased their price target on shares of Verizon Communications from $48.00 to $50.00 and gave the stock a “sector perform” rating in a report on Monday, July 31st. Cowen and Company reissued a “hold” rating and set a $52.00 price target on shares of Verizon Communications in a report on Friday, July 28th. Finally, Barclays PLC lowered their price target on shares of Verizon Communications from $49.00 to $47.00 and set an “equal weight” rating on the stock in a report on Friday, July 14th.

Shares of Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) opened at 47.89 on Friday. The company has a market cap of $195.36 billion, a P/E ratio of 12.31 and a beta of 0.56. The company’s 50 day moving average is $45.92 and its 200 day moving average is $47.30. Verizon Communications has a 12 month low of $42.80 and a 12 month high of $54.83.

Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) last released its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, July 27th. The cell phone carrier reported $0.96 earnings per share for the quarter, hitting the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.96. The firm had revenue of $30.55 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $29.84 billion. Verizon Communications had a net margin of 12.88% and a return on equity of 63.06%. The business’s quarterly revenue was up .1% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the prior year, the business earned $0.94 earnings per share. On average, equities research analysts predict that Verizon Communications will post $3.79 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Tuesday, August 1st. Stockholders of record on Monday, July 10th were paid a $0.5775 dividend. This represents a $2.31 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 4.82%. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, July 6th. Verizon Communications’s dividend payout ratio is currently 59.23%.

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In related news, EVP Craig L. Silliman sold 610 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, June 27th. The shares were sold at an average price of $45.00, for a total transaction of $27,450.00. Following the completion of the sale, the executive vice president now directly owns 8,429 shares in the company, valued at $379,305. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available through the SEC website. Over the last 90 days, insiders have sold 1,830 shares of company stock valued at $84,229. 0.13% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

A number of large investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in VZ. Shepherd Financial Partners LLC purchased a new stake in Verizon Communications during the fourth quarter valued at about $285,000. Biegel & Waller LLC purchased a new stake in Verizon Communications during the fourth quarter valued at about $245,000. Cypress Wealth Advisors LLC boosted its stake in Verizon Communications by 5.8% in the fourth quarter. Cypress Wealth Advisors LLC now owns 13,040 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock valued at $696,000 after buying an additional 712 shares during the last quarter. CAMG Solamere Management LLC purchased a new stake in Verizon Communications during the fourth quarter valued at about $291,000. Finally, Bridgeworth LLC purchased a new stake in Verizon Communications during the fourth quarter valued at about $684,000. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 62.33% of the company’s stock.

About Verizon Communications

Verizon Communications Inc is a holding company. The Company, through its subsidiaries, provides communications, information and entertainment products and services to consumers, businesses and governmental agencies. Its segments include Wireless and Wireline. The Wireless segment offers communications products and services, including wireless voice and data services and equipment sales, to consumer, business and government customers across the United States.

Analyst Recommendations for Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ)

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