Shares of BCE Inc. (NYSE:BCE) have received an average recommendation of “Hold” from the fourteen brokerages that are presently covering the firm. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, six have issued a hold rating and six have assigned a buy rating to the company. The average 12 month target price among brokerages that have covered the stock in the last year is $57.30.

A number of research analysts have commented on BCE shares. Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of BCE from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Tuesday, June 28th. Citigroup Inc. raised their price target on shares of BCE from $62.00 to $63.00 and gave the company a “neutral” rating in a report on Tuesday, July 19th. BMO Capital Markets restated a “buy” rating and issued a $65.00 price target on shares of BCE in a report on Friday, August 5th. JPMorgan Chase & Co. restated an “overweight” rating and issued a $66.00 price target (up from $62.00) on shares of BCE in a report on Sunday, August 7th. Finally, Desjardins restated a “hold” rating and issued a $64.00 price target on shares of BCE in a report on Wednesday, August 10th.

Hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Citadel Advisors LLC bought a new stake in BCE during the second quarter worth approximately $135,740,000. Mackenzie Financial Corp acquired a new position in BCE during the second quarter worth about $105,104,000. Emerald Acquisition Ltd. acquired a new position in BCE during the second quarter worth about $61,776,000. AGF Investments Inc. raised its position in BCE by 52.6% in the second quarter. AGF Investments Inc. now owns 2,090,675 shares of the company’s stock worth $98,904,000 after buying an additional 720,752 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Goldman Sachs Group Inc. raised its position in BCE by 36.2% in the first quarter. Goldman Sachs Group Inc. now owns 2,410,636 shares of the company’s stock worth $109,780,000 after buying an additional 640,070 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors own 44.50% of the company’s stock.

Shares of BCE (NYSE:BCE) traded up 1.01% during mid-day trading on Monday, reaching $45.22. 264,930 shares of the company’s stock were exchanged. BCE has a one year low of $35.96 and a one year high of $49.03. The company’s 50-day moving average price is $46.60 and its 200-day moving average price is $46.73. The company has a market capitalization of $39.32 billion, a PE ratio of 18.76 and a beta of 0.40.

BCE (NYSE:BCE) last posted its earnings results on Thursday, August 4th. The company reported $0.94 EPS for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.91 by $0.03. The business had revenue of $5.34 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $4.10 billion. BCE had a net margin of 13.02% and a return on equity of 22.89%. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up .3% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter last year, the firm posted $0.87 EPS. On average, equities analysts expect that BCE will post $2.66 earnings per share for the current year.

The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Saturday, October 15th. Investors of record on Thursday, September 15th will be paid a $0.52 dividend. This represents a $2.08 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 4.65%. The ex-dividend date is Tuesday, September 13th. BCE’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 88.14%.

About BCE

BCE Inc is a communications company. The Company provides a range of broadband communications and content services to consumer, residential, business and government customers in Canada. The Company offers various services under the Bell and Bell Aliant brands, such as fiber-based Internet protocol television (IPTV) and high-speed Internet services, home phone and business network and communications services.

5 Day Chart for NYSE:BCE

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