First Quadrant L P CA Sells 612,697 Shares of Verizon Communications Inc. (VZ)

First Quadrant L P CA reduced its position in Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ) by 71.7% during the first quarter, according to its most recent 13F filing with the SEC. The fund owned 241,684 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock after selling 612,697 shares during the period. First Quadrant L P CA’s holdings in Verizon Communications were worth $11,782,000 as of its most recent filing with the SEC.

A number of other institutional investors also recently added to or reduced their stakes in VZ. Sunbelt Securities Inc. bought a new position in Verizon Communications during the fourth quarter valued at approximately $115,000. Tortoise Investment Management LLC boosted its position in 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 valued at $139,000 after buying an additional 680 shares during the last quarter. Northwest Quadrant Wealth Management LLC acquired a new position in Verizon Communications during the fourth quarter valued at $155,000. Portfolio Solutions LLC acquired a new position in Verizon Communications during the first quarter valued at $179,000. Finally, Feltz Wealth PLAN Inc. acquired a new position in Verizon Communications during the first quarter valued at $184,000. 62.35% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

Shares of Verizon Communications Inc. (VZ) traded down 0.53% during midday trading on Tuesday, hitting $48.60. 10,844,573 shares of the stock traded hands. The company has a market capitalization of $198.24 billion, a P/E ratio of 12.49 and a beta of 0.56. The stock has a 50 day moving average of $45.22 and a 200 day moving average of $47.48. Verizon Communications Inc. has a 1-year low of $42.80 and a 1-year high of $54.83.

Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, July 27th. The cell phone carrier reported $0.96 EPS for the quarter, hitting the consensus estimate of $0.96. The business had revenue of $30.55 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $29.84 billion. Verizon Communications had a net margin of 12.88% and a return on equity of 63.06%. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up .1% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period last year, the company posted $0.94 earnings per share. Equities research analysts predict that Verizon Communications Inc. will post $3.79 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Tuesday, August 1st. Investors of record on Monday, July 10th were issued a dividend of $0.5775 per share. This represents a $2.31 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 4.75%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Thursday, July 6th. Verizon Communications’s dividend payout ratio is currently 59.23%.

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Several research analysts have commented on the stock. Argus cut shares of Verizon Communications from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Friday, April 21st. Bank of America Corporation reaffirmed a “buy” rating on shares of Verizon Communications in a research report on Saturday, June 17th. Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of Verizon Communications from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report on Tuesday, April 25th. Instinet reaffirmed a “neutral” rating and set a $46.00 price objective (down previously from $47.00) on shares of Verizon Communications in a research report on Sunday, April 23rd. Finally, Royal Bank Of Canada reaffirmed a “hold” rating and set a $48.00 price objective on shares of Verizon Communications in a research report on Sunday, July 9th. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, twenty-two have assigned a hold rating, five have assigned a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the stock. The stock presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $52.73.

In related news, EVP Craig L. Silliman sold 610 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, June 27th. The shares were sold at an average price of $45.00, for a total transaction of $27,450.00. Following the completion of the sale, the executive vice president now directly owns 8,429 shares in the company, valued at $379,305. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is accessible through the SEC website. Over the last 90 days, insiders have sold 1,830 shares of company stock valued at $84,229. 0.13% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.

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.

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

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