Great West Life Assurance Co. Can lifted its position in shares of Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ) by 1.8% during the 3rd quarter, HoldingsChannel reports. The fund owned 5,158,292 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock after purchasing an additional 93,537 shares during the period. Great West Life Assurance Co. Can’s holdings in Verizon Communications were worth $254,469,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.

Several other hedge funds have also recently bought and sold shares of the company. Vanguard Group Inc. raised its position in shares of Verizon Communications by 2.1% during the 2nd quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 282,894,542 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock worth $12,634,070,000 after purchasing an additional 5,837,702 shares during the last quarter. Capital Research Global Investors raised its position in shares of Verizon Communications by 15.1% during the 2nd quarter. Capital Research Global Investors now owns 153,408,016 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock worth $6,851,202,000 after purchasing an additional 20,070,391 shares during the last quarter. FMR LLC raised its position in shares of Verizon Communications by 15.0% during the 2nd quarter. FMR LLC now owns 61,833,096 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock worth $2,761,466,000 after purchasing an additional 8,077,275 shares during the last quarter. Legal & General Group Plc raised its position in shares of Verizon Communications by 3.7% during the 2nd quarter. Legal & General Group Plc now owns 23,859,220 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock worth $1,065,488,000 after purchasing an additional 848,043 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Franklin Resources Inc. raised its position in shares of Verizon Communications by 19.9% during the 2nd quarter. Franklin Resources Inc. now owns 21,820,729 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock worth $974,515,000 after purchasing an additional 3,623,182 shares during the last quarter. 63.26% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

VZ has been the subject of several research analyst reports. Macquarie restated a “hold” rating and set a $52.00 price target on shares of Verizon Communications in a research report on Sunday, October 22nd. Scotiabank upgraded shares of Verizon Communications from a “sector perform” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $60.00 price target for the company in a research report on Monday, January 22nd. Scotia Howard Weill upgraded shares of Verizon Communications from a “sector perform” rating to a “sector outperform” rating in a research report on Monday, January 22nd. SunTrust Banks reiterated a “hold” rating and issued a $50.00 price objective on shares of Verizon Communications in a report on Friday, October 20th. Finally, Moffett Nathanson downgraded shares of Verizon Communications from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating in a report on Tuesday, January 16th. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, fifteen have assigned a hold rating and nine have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. Verizon Communications has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $53.37.

Shares of Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ) opened at $49.88 on Friday. The company has a market cap of $203,480.00, a PE ratio of 6.78, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 2.00 and a beta of 0.58. The company has a quick ratio of 0.87, a current ratio of 0.91 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 2.54. Verizon Communications Inc. has a 1-year low of $42.80 and a 1-year high of $54.77.

Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, January 23rd. The cell phone carrier reported $0.86 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.88 by ($0.02). The firm had revenue of $33.96 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $33.20 billion. Verizon Communications had a return on equity of 48.97% and a net margin of 23.88%. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up 2.2% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the prior year, the business earned $0.86 EPS. equities research analysts expect that Verizon Communications Inc. will post 4.54 earnings per share for the current year.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Thursday, February 1st. Stockholders of record on Wednesday, January 10th were issued a dividend of $0.59 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Tuesday, January 9th. This represents a $2.36 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 4.73%. Verizon Communications’s dividend payout ratio is currently 32.07%.

In other news, EVP Craig L. Silliman sold 610 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, November 27th. The shares were sold at an average price of $47.41, for a total transaction of $28,920.10. Following the completion of the sale, the executive vice president now owns 3,269 shares in the company, valued at approximately $154,983.29. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this link. 0.13% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

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

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