Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) Stock Rating Lowered by The Goldman Sachs Group

Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZGet Rating) was downgraded by equities researchers at The Goldman Sachs Group from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating in a research report issued to clients and investors on Monday, The Fly reports.

A number of other analysts have also recently weighed in on VZ. Deutsche Bank Aktiengesellschaft increased their price objective on shares of Verizon Communications from $56.00 to $57.00 in a report on Tuesday, January 25th. JPMorgan Chase & Co. cut shares of Verizon Communications from an “overweight” rating to a “neutral” rating and dropped their price objective for the stock from $62.00 to $56.00 in a report on Wednesday, January 26th. StockNews.com assumed coverage on shares of Verizon Communications in a report on Thursday, March 31st. They issued a “hold” rating on the stock. Finally, Tigress Financial raised their price objective on shares of Verizon Communications from $67.00 to $68.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Friday, January 21st. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, twelve have issued a hold rating and three have given a buy rating to the company. According to MarketBeat, the stock has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $59.20.

Shares of NYSE:VZ opened at $51.91 on Monday. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.72, a quick ratio of 0.71 and a current ratio of 0.78. Verizon Communications has a 1-year low of $49.69 and a 1-year high of $59.85. The company’s fifty day moving average is $52.94 and its two-hundred day moving average is $52.60. The stock has a market capitalization of $217.91 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 10.08, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 3.75 and a beta of 0.39.

Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZGet Rating) last released its quarterly earnings data on Friday, April 22nd. The cell phone carrier reported $1.35 earnings per share for the quarter, hitting the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.35. Verizon Communications had a net margin of 16.51% and a return on equity of 28.94%. The business had revenue of $33.60 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $33.61 billion. During the same quarter last year, the company earned $1.31 EPS. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 2.2% compared to the same quarter last year. Sell-side analysts expect that Verizon Communications will post 5.4 EPS for the current fiscal year.

In other news, CEO Hans Erik Vestberg bought 19,000 shares of the stock in a transaction on Wednesday, January 26th. The shares were purchased at an average cost of $52.55 per share, for a total transaction of $998,450.00. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through the SEC website. Also, EVP Craig L. Silliman sold 1,558 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Thursday, March 3rd. The shares were sold at an average price of $54.48, for a total value of $84,879.84. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 0.10% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

Several institutional investors and hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of VZ. BlackRock Inc. raised its stake in shares of Verizon Communications by 0.3% during the 4th quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 290,740,891 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock valued at $15,106,895,000 after purchasing an additional 791,443 shares during the period. State Street Corp boosted its holdings in Verizon Communications by 2.6% during the 4th quarter. State Street Corp now owns 170,483,451 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock valued at $8,858,320,000 after acquiring an additional 4,312,242 shares during the period. Geode Capital Management LLC boosted its holdings in Verizon Communications by 2.5% during the 4th quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC now owns 73,174,424 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock valued at $3,792,626,000 after acquiring an additional 1,776,263 shares during the period. Charles Schwab Investment Management Inc. raised its position in Verizon Communications by 8.7% during the 4th quarter. Charles Schwab Investment Management Inc. now owns 56,847,194 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock valued at $2,953,781,000 after purchasing an additional 4,571,857 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Morgan Stanley raised its position in Verizon Communications by 4.2% during the 3rd quarter. Morgan Stanley now owns 42,826,242 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock valued at $2,313,046,000 after purchasing an additional 1,718,891 shares during the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 62.93% of the company’s stock.

About Verizon Communications (Get Rating)

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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