Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ)‘s stock had its “hold” rating restated by equities research analysts at Deutsche Bank AG in a research note issued on Sunday, April 23rd. They presently have a $46.00 target price on the cell phone carrier’s stock, down from their previous target price of $47.00. Deutsche Bank AG’s price objective suggests a potential upside of 1.14% from the company’s current price.

VZ has been the subject of several other reports. Vetr upgraded Verizon Communications from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $52.26 target price for the company in a research report on Monday, March 27th. Barclays PLC reduced their target price on Verizon Communications from $52.00 to $49.00 and set an “equal weight” rating for the company in a research report on Thursday, April 13th. Wells Fargo & Co cut Verizon Communications from an “outperform” rating to a “market perform” rating and reduced their target price for the stock from $56.95 to $54.00 in a research report on Monday, January 23rd. Royal Bank of Canada restated a “hold” rating and set a $51.00 target price on shares of Verizon Communications in a research report on Friday, April 7th. Finally, SunTrust Banks, Inc. started coverage on Verizon Communications in a research report on Tuesday, April 18th. They set a “hold” rating and a $50.00 target price for the company. Twenty-four analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and seven have assigned a buy rating to the company. The stock presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $53.60.

Analyst Recommendations for Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ)

Shares of Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) opened at 45.48 on Friday. The stock has a 50 day moving average of $47.10 and a 200-day moving average of $49.45. The stock has a market capitalization of $185.53 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 15.21 and a beta of 0.43. Verizon Communications has a 52-week low of $44.46 and a 52-week high of $56.95.

Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, April 20th. The cell phone carrier reported $0.95 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.98 by $0.03. The company had revenue of $29.81 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $30.41 billion. Verizon Communications had a net margin of 10.42% and a return on equity of 72.75%. Verizon Communications’s revenue for the quarter was down 7.3% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter last year, the firm posted $1.06 earnings per share. On average, equities research analysts predict that Verizon Communications will post $3.77 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Monday, May 1st. Stockholders of record on Monday, April 10th were issued a dividend of $0.5775 per share. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, April 6th. This represents a $2.31 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 5.08%. Verizon Communications’s payout ratio is 71.74%.

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In related news, EVP Craig L. Silliman sold 610 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Monday, March 27th. The stock was sold at an average price of $49.66, for a total value of $30,292.60. Following the transaction, the executive vice president now directly owns 10,259 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $509,461.94. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available through the SEC website. Also, EVP Marni M. Walden sold 16,362 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Monday, May 1st. The stock was sold at an average price of $46.08, for a total value of $753,960.96. Following the completion of the transaction, the executive vice president now directly owns 11,797 shares in the company, valued at $543,605.76. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold a total of 60,640 shares of company stock worth $2,966,596 over the last three months. Insiders own 0.10% of the company’s stock.

Large investors have recently modified their holdings of the company. Baltimore Washington Financial Advisors Inc. acquired a new stake in shares of Verizon Communications during the fourth quarter worth about $9,742,000. Guidant Wealth Advisors acquired a new stake in shares of Verizon Communications during the third quarter worth about $107,000. Sunbelt Securities Inc. acquired a new stake in shares of Verizon Communications during the fourth quarter worth about $115,000. Westside Investment Management Inc. raised its stake in shares of Verizon Communications by 2.2% in the first quarter. Westside Investment Management Inc. now owns 2,210 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock worth $108,000 after buying an additional 48 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Tortoise Investment Management LLC raised its stake in shares of Verizon Communications by 35.3% in the fourth quarter. Tortoise Investment Management LLC now owns 2,609 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock worth $139,000 after buying an additional 680 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 63.38% of the company’s stock.

Verizon Communications Company Profile

Verizon Communications Inc is a holding company. The Company, through its subsidiaries, provides communications, information and entertainment products and services to consumers, businesses and governmental agencies. Its segments include Wireless and Wireline. The Wireless segment offers communications products and services, including wireless voice and data services and equipment sales, to consumer, business and government customers across the United States.

12 Month Chart for NYSE:VZ

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