Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a note issued to investors on Tuesday. The brokerage currently has a $56.00 price target on the cell phone carrier’s stock. Zacks Investment Research‘s target price suggests a potential upside of 13.11% from the company’s previous close.
According to Zacks, “Verizon posted mixed fourth-quarter 2017 results with a massive gain of 1.174 million postpaid customers but lost 0.184 million prepaid customers. Verizon plans to launch 5G wireless residential broadband services in several U.S. markets in 2018. Verizon is planning to launch a theme-based online streaming TV service in 2018, backed by the digital streaming deal with the National Football League (NFL). Verizon is targeting the SMB segment with Fios Current TV video services. The company is boosting its fiber network assets with new buyouts. Verizon expects positive growth in 2018 on the back of the expected savings from tax reform. Over the past three months, the stock price grew 13.4% as against the industry’s gain of 6.1%. However, Verizon continues to struggle in a highly competitive and saturated wireless market. Losses in wireline access lines, marketing costs of promotional plans, competitive video market are other major risks.”
A number of other analysts also recently weighed in on VZ. Vetr raised shares of Verizon Communications from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $54.80 price target for the company in a report on Monday, February 5th. Macquarie reaffirmed a “hold” rating and set a $54.00 price target on shares of Verizon Communications in a report on Wednesday, January 24th. SunTrust Banks upped their price target on shares of Verizon Communications to $58.00 and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a report on Wednesday, January 24th. Bank of America upped their price target on shares of Verizon Communications from $55.00 to $58.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Wednesday, January 24th. Finally, JPMorgan Chase & Co. upped their price target on shares of Verizon Communications from $52.00 to $58.00 and gave the stock a “neutral” rating in a report on Wednesday, January 24th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, fifteen have given a hold rating and ten have given a buy rating to the company. Verizon Communications presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $53.51.
Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, January 23rd. The cell phone carrier reported $0.86 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.88 by ($0.02). Verizon Communications had a return on equity of 48.97% and a net margin of 23.88%. The firm had revenue of $33.96 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $33.20 billion. During the same period last year, the company posted $0.86 EPS. The business’s revenue was up 2.2% on a year-over-year basis. research analysts forecast that Verizon Communications will post 4.54 earnings per share for the current year.
In related news, EVP Craig L. Silliman sold 610 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, November 27th. The shares were sold at an average price of $47.41, for a total value of $28,920.10. Following the completion of the transaction, the executive vice president now owns 3,269 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $154,983.29. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available through the SEC website. 0.13% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.
Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the business. Whitnell & Co. increased its position in Verizon Communications by 1.2% in the 2nd quarter. Whitnell & Co. now owns 10,316 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock valued at $461,000 after acquiring an additional 125 shares during the period. Caxton Associates LP acquired a new stake in shares of Verizon Communications during the second quarter worth $607,000. DekaBank Deutsche Girozentrale increased its position in shares of Verizon Communications by 4.6% during the second quarter. DekaBank Deutsche Girozentrale now owns 1,673,761 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock worth $74,961,000 after buying an additional 72,980 shares during the period. Canada Pension Plan Investment Board increased its position in shares of Verizon Communications by 1.3% during the second quarter. Canada Pension Plan Investment Board now owns 10,704,239 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock worth $478,051,000 after buying an additional 136,700 shares during the period. Finally, Alps Advisors Inc. increased its position in shares of Verizon Communications by 5.2% during the second quarter. Alps Advisors Inc. now owns 1,018,021 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock worth $45,465,000 after buying an additional 50,602 shares during the period. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 63.31% of the company’s stock.
About Verizon Communications
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.
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