JSF Financial LLC grew its holdings in shares of Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ) by 34.5% in the first quarter, Holdings Channel reports. The institutional investor owned 9,129 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock after acquiring an additional 2,341 shares during the period. JSF Financial LLC’s holdings in Verizon Communications were worth $491,000 as of its most recent SEC filing.
Several other hedge funds and other institutional investors have also modified their holdings of VZ. Danda Trouve Investment Management Inc. bought a new position in shares of Verizon Communications during the fourth quarter valued at about $25,000. Lionsbridge Wealth Management LLC bought a new position in shares of Verizon Communications during the fourth quarter valued at about $32,000. HighMark Wealth Management LLC bought a new position in shares of Verizon Communications during the fourth quarter valued at about $33,000. Permanens Capital L.P. bought a new position in shares of Verizon Communications during the fourth quarter valued at about $37,000. Finally, Cedar Mountain Advisors LLC bought a new position in shares of Verizon Communications during the fourth quarter valued at about $45,000. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 66.77% of the company’s stock.
VZ has been the topic of a number of recent analyst reports. Morgan Stanley dropped their price target on shares of Verizon Communications from $61.00 to $60.00 and set an “equal weight” rating on the stock in a research report on Friday, April 17th. Credit Suisse Group dropped their price target on shares of Verizon Communications from $65.00 to $61.00 and set a “neutral” rating on the stock in a research report on Monday, April 6th. SunTrust Banks raised their price target on shares of Verizon Communications from $60.00 to $65.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Tuesday, April 28th. Moffett Nathanson reissued a “hold” rating and set a $58.00 price target on shares of Verizon Communications in a research report on Thursday, January 30th. Finally, Cowen raised shares of Verizon Communications from a “market perform” rating to an “outperform” rating and set a $61.00 price objective on the stock in a research report on Monday, March 2nd. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, sixteen have issued a hold rating, six have issued a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the company. The stock presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $61.44.
Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Friday, April 24th. The cell phone carrier reported $1.26 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $1.22 by $0.04. Verizon Communications had a net margin of 14.00% and a return on equity of 33.26%. The company had revenue of $31.81 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $32.37 billion. During the same quarter in the previous year, the firm posted $1.20 earnings per share. The company’s quarterly revenue was down 1.0% compared to the same quarter last year. Equities analysts expect that Verizon Communications Inc. will post 4.77 EPS for the current year.
The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, May 1st. Investors of record on Monday, April 13th were paid a dividend of $0.615 per share. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, April 9th. This represents a $2.46 annualized dividend and a yield of 4.37%. Verizon Communications’s dividend payout ratio is currently 51.14%.
Verizon Communications declared that its Board of Directors has approved a stock repurchase plan on Thursday, February 6th that permits the company to buyback 100,000,000 shares. This buyback authorization permits the cell phone carrier to reacquire shares of its stock through open market purchases. Shares buyback plans are usually an indication that the company’s management believes its shares are undervalued.
Verizon Communications Company Profile
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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