Capital International Investors lessened its stake in shares of Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ) by 2.7% during the 4th quarter, Holdings Channel reports. The firm owned 30,004,052 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock after selling 833,867 shares during the quarter. Capital International Investors’ holdings in Verizon Communications were worth $1,842,248,000 as of its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

A number of other large investors also recently added to or reduced their stakes in VZ. Grandfield & Dodd LLC raised its position in shares of Verizon Communications by 2.5% during the 4th quarter. Grandfield & Dodd LLC now owns 6,934 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock valued at $426,000 after acquiring an additional 168 shares in the last quarter. Rikoon Group LLC boosted its stake in Verizon Communications by 0.6% during the fourth quarter. Rikoon Group LLC now owns 31,603 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock worth $1,940,000 after buying an additional 173 shares during the period. CFO4Life Group LLC boosted its stake in Verizon Communications by 2.3% during the fourth quarter. CFO4Life Group LLC now owns 7,655 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock worth $470,000 after buying an additional 173 shares during the period. Comprehensive Portfolio Management LLC boosted its stake in Verizon Communications by 2.1% during the fourth quarter. Comprehensive Portfolio Management LLC now owns 8,361 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock worth $513,000 after buying an additional 174 shares during the period. Finally, NorthCoast Asset Management LLC boosted its stake in Verizon Communications by 2.3% during the fourth quarter. NorthCoast Asset Management LLC now owns 7,717 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock worth $474,000 after buying an additional 174 shares during the period. 66.75% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

A number of equities analysts recently weighed in on VZ shares. Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of Verizon Communications from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating and set a $62.00 price objective on the stock. in a research report on Saturday, January 11th. Deutsche Bank began coverage on Verizon Communications in a research note on Wednesday, January 22nd. They issued a “hold” rating and a $63.00 price target for the company. Credit Suisse Group cut Verizon Communications from an “outperform” rating to a “neutral” rating and set a $65.00 price target for the company. in a research note on Monday, February 3rd. ValuEngine raised Verizon Communications from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Friday, February 21st. Finally, Moffett Nathanson reissued a “hold” rating and issued a $58.00 price target on shares of Verizon Communications in a research note on Thursday, January 30th. Twelve research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and eight have issued a buy rating to the stock. The stock presently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $63.10.

Shares of NYSE VZ traded up $2.80 during mid-day trading on Thursday, hitting $52.74. 13,357,110 shares of the company traded hands, compared to its average volume of 32,756,774. Verizon Communications Inc. has a 1 year low of $48.84 and a 1 year high of $62.22. The stock has a market capitalization of $206.75 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 11.34, a PEG ratio of 2.94 and a beta of 0.54. The company has a quick ratio of 0.80, a current ratio of 0.84 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.90. The business has a 50 day moving average of $56.28 and a two-hundred day moving average of $59.19.

Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) last announced its earnings results on Thursday, January 30th. The cell phone carrier reported $1.13 EPS for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $1.15 by ($0.02). Verizon Communications had a net margin of 14.61% and a return on equity of 33.39%. The company had revenue of $34.78 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $34.62 billion. During the same period in the prior year, the company earned $1.12 earnings per share. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 1.4% on a year-over-year basis. As a group, research analysts anticipate that Verizon Communications Inc. will post 4.94 EPS for the current year.

The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, May 1st. Stockholders of record on Monday, April 13th will be issued a dividend of $0.615 per share. This represents a $2.46 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 4.66%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, April 9th. Verizon Communications’s dividend payout ratio is 51.14%.

Verizon Communications announced that its Board of Directors has initiated a stock repurchase program on Thursday, February 6th that allows the company to repurchase 100,000,000 shares. This repurchase authorization allows the cell phone carrier to purchase shares of its stock through open market purchases. Shares repurchase programs are generally an indication that the company’s management believes its shares are undervalued.

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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