Fort Sheridan Advisors LLC Purchases 5,058 Shares of Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ)

Fort Sheridan Advisors LLC boosted its position in shares of Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ) by 14.5% in the first quarter, according to the company in its most recent disclosure with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The fund owned 39,970 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock after buying an additional 5,058 shares during the period. Verizon Communications makes up about 1.6% of Fort Sheridan Advisors LLC’s portfolio, making the stock its 14th biggest holding. Fort Sheridan Advisors LLC’s holdings in Verizon Communications were worth $2,148,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.

A number of other institutional investors have also recently made changes to their positions in the stock. Danda Trouve Investment Management Inc. purchased a new stake in Verizon Communications during the fourth quarter valued at approximately $25,000. Lionsbridge Wealth Management LLC purchased a new stake in Verizon Communications during the fourth quarter valued at approximately $32,000. HighMark Wealth Management LLC purchased a new stake in Verizon Communications during the fourth quarter valued at approximately $33,000. AlphaCore Capital LLC purchased a new stake in Verizon Communications during the first quarter valued at approximately $35,000. Finally, Permanens Capital L.P. purchased a new stake in Verizon Communications during the fourth quarter valued at approximately $37,000. 65.36% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

VZ traded up $0.35 during trading on Thursday, hitting $55.50. 9,201,230 shares of the stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 14,829,205. The firm has a 50 day simple moving average of $56.51 and a 200 day simple moving average of $57.95. The firm has a market cap of $224.69 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 12.45, a P/E/G ratio of 3.64 and a beta of 0.48. Verizon Communications Inc. has a 1 year low of $48.84 and a 1 year high of $62.22. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 2.02, a quick ratio of 0.95 and a current ratio of 0.99.

Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) last released its quarterly earnings data on Friday, April 24th. The cell phone carrier reported $1.26 EPS for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $1.22 by $0.04. The company had revenue of $31.81 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $32.37 billion. Verizon Communications had a return on equity of 33.26% and a net margin of 14.00%. Verizon Communications’s quarterly revenue was down 1.0% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period last year, the business posted $1.20 EPS. As a group, equities analysts anticipate that Verizon Communications Inc. will post 4.77 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, May 1st. Shareholders of record on Monday, April 13th were given a dividend of $0.615 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Thursday, April 9th. This represents a $2.46 annualized dividend and a yield of 4.43%. Verizon Communications’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 51.14%.

Verizon Communications announced that its Board of Directors has initiated a stock repurchase plan on Thursday, February 6th that authorizes the company to buyback 100,000,000 outstanding shares. This buyback authorization authorizes the cell phone carrier to reacquire shares of its stock through open market purchases. Shares buyback plans are often a sign that the company’s management believes its shares are undervalued.

A number of equities research analysts have issued reports on the company. Cowen upgraded Verizon Communications from a “market perform” rating to an “outperform” rating and set a $61.00 price objective on the stock in a research report on Monday, March 2nd. SunTrust Banks upped their price objective on Verizon Communications from $60.00 to $65.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Tuesday, April 28th. Credit Suisse Group reduced their price target on Verizon Communications from $65.00 to $61.00 and set a “neutral” rating on the stock in a report on Monday, April 6th. Moffett Nathanson reiterated a “hold” rating and issued a $58.00 price target on shares of Verizon Communications in a report on Thursday, January 30th. Finally, JPMorgan Chase & Co. reduced their price target on Verizon Communications from $63.00 to $62.00 and set a “neutral” rating on the stock in a report on Friday, April 17th. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, sixteen have given a hold rating, six have assigned a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the company. Verizon Communications currently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $61.44.

In other Verizon Communications news, SVP Anthony T. Skiadas sold 10,744 shares of the stock in a transaction on Friday, May 1st. The stock was sold at an average price of $57.10, for a total transaction of $613,482.40. Following the sale, the senior vice president now owns 27,501 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $1,570,307.10. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. 0.07% of the stock is currently owned by company insiders.

Verizon Communications Company Profile

Verizon Communications Inc, through its subsidiaries, offers communications, information, and entertainment products and services to consumers, businesses, and governmental agencies worldwide. The company's Wireless segment provides wireless voice and data services; Internet access on various notebook computers and tablets; international travel wireless services; and network access services to deliver various Internet of Things products and services, as well as offers digital advertising and digital media services platforms.

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

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