Robeco Institutional Asset Management B.V. boosted its position in Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ) by 7.3% during the fourth quarter, HoldingsChannel.com reports. The institutional investor owned 5,694,581 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock after acquiring an additional 385,245 shares during the quarter. Verizon Communications makes up 1.1% of Robeco Institutional Asset Management B.V.’s investment portfolio, making the stock its 10th biggest position. Robeco Institutional Asset Management B.V.’s holdings in Verizon Communications were worth $349,648,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.

A number of other hedge funds have also recently modified their holdings of the business. Cedar Mountain Advisors LLC bought a new stake in shares of Verizon Communications in the 4th quarter worth about $45,000. Fulcrum Equity Management acquired a new stake in shares of Verizon Communications in the 3rd quarter worth approximately $48,000. Westchester Capital Management Inc. lifted its stake in shares of Verizon Communications by 428.6% in the 4th quarter. Westchester Capital Management Inc. now owns 925 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock worth $57,000 after acquiring an additional 750 shares during the period. Wealthcare Capital Management LLC lifted its stake in shares of Verizon Communications by 39.0% in the 4th quarter. Wealthcare Capital Management LLC now owns 1,087 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock worth $67,000 after acquiring an additional 305 shares during the period. Finally, Evolution Wealth Advisors LLC lifted its stake in shares of Verizon Communications by 280.7% in the 4th quarter. Evolution Wealth Advisors LLC now owns 1,142 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock worth $70,000 after acquiring an additional 842 shares during the period. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 65.20% of the company’s stock.

In other news, EVP Craig L. Silliman sold 1,346 shares of the stock in a transaction on Tuesday, November 26th. The shares were sold at an average price of $59.55, for a total transaction of $80,154.30. Following the transaction, the executive vice president now owns 18,637 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,109,833.35. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is accessible through the SEC website. 0.03% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.

Several research firms recently commented on VZ. Nomura reissued a “hold” rating and set a $65.00 target price on shares of Verizon Communications in a research note on Monday, February 3rd. Deutsche Bank initiated coverage on shares of Verizon Communications in a report on Wednesday, January 22nd. They set a “hold” rating and a $63.00 price target on the stock. ValuEngine lowered shares of Verizon Communications from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Thursday, February 6th. New Street Research restated a “buy” rating on shares of Verizon Communications in a report on Friday, January 10th. Finally, HSBC lowered shares of Verizon Communications from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating and set a $65.00 price target on the stock. in a report on Thursday, November 14th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, eleven have given a hold rating and six have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $63.58.

Verizon Communications stock traded down $0.29 during trading hours on Friday, hitting $58.36. The company had a trading volume of 5,097,686 shares, compared to its average volume of 13,679,550. The firm has a market capitalization of $249.14 billion, a P/E ratio of 12.55, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 3.64 and a beta of 0.51. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.90, a current ratio of 0.84 and a quick ratio of 0.80. The firm’s fifty day moving average is $59.96 and its 200-day moving average is $59.38. Verizon Communications Inc. has a fifty-two week low of $53.94 and a fifty-two week high of $62.22.

Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) last released its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, January 30th. The cell phone carrier reported $1.13 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.15 by ($0.02). The company had revenue of $34.78 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $34.62 billion. Verizon Communications had a net margin of 14.61% and a return on equity of 33.39%. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up 1.4% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company posted $1.12 EPS. Analysts anticipate that Verizon Communications Inc. will post 4.94 earnings per share for the current year.

Verizon Communications declared that its Board of Directors has approved a stock buyback program on Thursday, February 6th that allows the company to buyback 100,000,000 outstanding shares. This buyback authorization allows the cell phone carrier to reacquire shares of its stock through open market purchases. Stock buyback programs are generally an indication that the company’s leadership believes its stock is undervalued.

The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Monday, February 3rd. Shareholders of record on Friday, January 10th were paid a $0.615 dividend. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, January 9th. This represents a $2.46 annualized dividend and a yield of 4.21%. Verizon Communications’s dividend payout ratio is presently 51.14%.

About Verizon Communications

Verizon Communications Inc, through its subsidiaries, offers communications, information, and entertainment products and services to consumers, businesses, and governmental agencies worldwide. The company's Wireless segment provides wireless voice and data services; Internet access on various notebook computers and tablets; international travel wireless services; and network access services to deliver various Internet of Things products and services, as well as offers digital advertising and digital media services platforms.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ)

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