Benjamin F. Edwards & Company Inc. raised its stake in shares of Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ) by 8.2% during the third quarter, according to its most recent Form 13F filing with the SEC. The fund owned 71,367 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock after buying an additional 5,410 shares during the period. Benjamin F. Edwards & Company Inc.’s holdings in Verizon Communications were worth $3,710,000 as of its most recent filing with the SEC.

A number of other institutional investors have also modified their holdings of VZ. Ironwood Investment Counsel LLC boosted its position in shares of Verizon Communications by 9.1% in the first quarter. Ironwood Investment Counsel LLC now owns 19,413 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock valued at $1,049,000 after buying an additional 1,621 shares in the last quarter. Simmons Bank acquired a new position in shares of Verizon Communications during the first quarter valued at approximately $8,354,000. Arete Wealth Advisors LLC boosted its position in shares of Verizon Communications by 9.7% in the first quarter. Arete Wealth Advisors LLC now owns 7,840 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock valued at $424,000 after buying an additional 691 shares in the last quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC boosted its position in shares of Verizon Communications by 2.0% in the first quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC now owns 33,346,023 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock valued at $1,799,729,000 after buying an additional 656,483 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Kimelman & Baird LLC acquired a new position in shares of Verizon Communications during the first quarter valued at approximately $208,000. 62.41% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

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

Shares of Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ) traded up 0.89% during trading on Monday, reaching $51.12. 15,982,359 shares of the company’s stock were exchanged. The firm has a market capitalization of $208.40 billion, a PE ratio of 14.90 and a beta of 0.38. The company’s 50-day moving average price is $48.54 and its 200 day moving average price is $51.87. Verizon Communications Inc. has a 52 week low of $43.79 and a 52 week high of $56.95.

Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) last released its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, October 20th. The cell phone carrier reported $1.01 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.99 by $0.02. Verizon Communications had a net margin of 10.97% and a return on equity of 78.75%. The business had revenue of $30.90 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $31.08 billion. During the same quarter last year, the company earned $1.04 EPS. The company’s revenue for the quarter was down 6.7% compared to the same quarter last year. Analysts predict that Verizon Communications Inc. will post $3.90 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Tuesday, November 1st. Investors of record on Friday, October 7th were issued a $0.0125 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Wednesday, October 5th. This represents a $0.05 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 0.10%. Verizon Communications’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 67.15%.

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Several equities analysts have commented on the stock. Imperial Capital cut shares of Verizon Communications from an “outperform” rating to an “in-line” rating and raised their price target for the company from $50.00 to $60.00 in a research report on Tuesday, August 2nd. Vetr restated a “buy” rating on shares of Verizon Communications in a report on Wednesday, August 10th. Jefferies Group restated a “hold” rating on shares of Verizon Communications in a report on Saturday, August 6th. Barclays PLC restated an “equal weight” rating and issued a $52.00 price objective on shares of Verizon Communications in a report on Friday, August 26th. Finally, Nomura restated a “hold” rating and issued a $47.00 price objective on shares of Verizon Communications in a report on Monday, September 12th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, twenty-two have given a hold rating and nine have assigned a buy rating to the company. The stock has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $54.61.

In related news, EVP Craig L. Silliman sold 668 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, November 22nd. The shares were sold at an average price of $49.29, for a total value of $32,925.72. Following the sale, the executive vice president now owns 6,047 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $298,056.63. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. Also, EVP Craig L. Silliman sold 672 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, October 26th. The stock was sold at an average price of $47.76, for a total transaction of $32,094.72. Following the completion of the sale, the executive vice president now directly owns 9,182 shares in the company, valued at approximately $438,532.32. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 0.10% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.

Verizon Communications Company Profile

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.

5 Day Chart for NYSE:VZ

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