Birch Hill Investment Advisors LLC Sells 1,900 Shares of Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ)

Birch Hill Investment Advisors LLC reduced its stake in Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZGet Rating) by 8.3% in the 2nd quarter, according to the company in its most recent disclosure with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The firm owned 20,867 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock after selling 1,900 shares during the period. Birch Hill Investment Advisors LLC’s holdings in Verizon Communications were worth $1,059,000 as of its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Other institutional investors have also made changes to their positions in the company. Vanguard Group Inc. lifted its stake in Verizon Communications by 2.7% during the first quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 330,221,086 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock worth $16,821,462,000 after purchasing an additional 8,570,818 shares during the last quarter. BlackRock Inc. lifted its stake in Verizon Communications by 4.8% during the first quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 304,700,845 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock worth $15,521,461,000 after purchasing an additional 13,959,954 shares during the last quarter. State Street Corp lifted its stake in Verizon Communications by 2.6% during the fourth quarter. State Street Corp now owns 170,483,451 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock worth $8,858,320,000 after purchasing an additional 4,312,242 shares during the last quarter. Charles Schwab Investment Management Inc. lifted its stake in Verizon Communications by 5.2% during the first quarter. Charles Schwab Investment Management Inc. now owns 59,782,122 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock worth $3,045,303,000 after purchasing an additional 2,934,928 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Capital World Investors lifted its stake in Verizon Communications by 7.7% during the first quarter. Capital World Investors now owns 49,879,143 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock worth $2,540,898,000 after purchasing an additional 3,568,252 shares during the last quarter. 62.83% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

Verizon Communications Stock Performance

NYSE VZ opened at $39.93 on Friday. The company has a market capitalization of $167.69 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 8.00, a PEG ratio of 1.89 and a beta of 0.36. Verizon Communications Inc. has a twelve month low of $39.26 and a twelve month high of $55.51. The stock has a fifty day simple moving average of $44.00 and a 200 day simple moving average of $48.51. The company has a quick ratio of 0.69, a current ratio of 0.76 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.56.

Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZGet Rating) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Friday, July 22nd. The cell phone carrier reported $1.31 earnings per share for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.32 by ($0.01). Verizon Communications had a return on equity of 26.95% and a net margin of 15.48%. The business had revenue of $33.79 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $33.77 billion. During the same quarter in the previous year, the business posted $1.37 earnings per share. The business’s revenue was up .1% on a year-over-year basis. Sell-side analysts expect that Verizon Communications Inc. will post 5.19 EPS for the current year.

Verizon Communications Increases Dividend

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, November 1st. Shareholders of record on Friday, October 7th will be issued a dividend of $0.6525 per share. This is an increase from Verizon Communications’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.64. This represents a $2.61 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 6.54%. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, October 6th. Verizon Communications’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 51.30%.

Insiders Place Their Bets

In other Verizon Communications news, EVP Craig L. Silliman sold 1,558 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, July 5th. The stock was sold at an average price of $51.42, for a total transaction of $80,112.36. Following the completion of the sale, the executive vice president now directly owns 33,403 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,717,582.26. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is accessible through this hyperlink. Company insiders own 0.10% of the company’s stock.

Wall Street Analyst Weigh In

VZ has been the subject of several recent analyst reports. Wells Fargo & Company cut their target price on Verizon Communications from $58.00 to $52.00 and set an “equal weight” rating for the company in a research note on Friday, July 8th. Wolfe Research dropped their price target on Verizon Communications from $60.00 to $51.00 and set a “peer perform” rating for the company in a research note on Thursday, June 2nd. Credit Suisse Group dropped their price target on Verizon Communications from $58.00 to $54.00 and set a “neutral” rating for the company in a research note on Tuesday, June 21st. UBS Group dropped their price target on Verizon Communications from $57.00 to $47.00 and set a “neutral” rating for the company in a research note on Monday, July 25th. Finally, Scotiabank cut Verizon Communications from a “sector outperform” rating to a “sector perform” rating in a research note on Friday, July 22nd. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, fifteen have assigned a hold rating and four have assigned a buy rating to the stock. Based on data from MarketBeat, the company currently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $55.61.

Verizon Communications Profile

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Verizon Communications Inc, through its subsidiaries, offers communications, technology, information, and entertainment products and services to consumers, businesses, and governmental entities worldwide. Its Consumer segment provides postpaid and prepaid service plans; internet access on notebook computers and tablets; wireless equipment, including smartphones and other handsets; and wireless-enabled internet devices, such as tablets, and other wireless-enabled connected devices comprising smart watches.

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

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