Hancock Whitney Corp Buys 31,448 Shares of Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ)

Hancock Whitney Corp increased its holdings in Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ) by 18.5% in the first quarter, according to the company in its most recent disclosure with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The firm owned 201,371 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock after acquiring an additional 31,448 shares during the quarter. Hancock Whitney Corp’s holdings in Verizon Communications were worth $10,820,000 as of its most recent SEC filing.

Other large investors have also added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Danda Trouve Investment Management Inc. purchased a new stake in shares of Verizon Communications during the fourth quarter valued at about $25,000. Lionsbridge Wealth Management LLC acquired a new position in Verizon Communications in the 4th quarter worth approximately $32,000. HighMark Wealth Management LLC acquired a new position in Verizon Communications in the 4th quarter worth approximately $33,000. AlphaCore Capital LLC acquired a new stake in shares of Verizon Communications during the 1st quarter worth approximately $35,000. Finally, Permanens Capital L.P. acquired a new stake in Verizon Communications in the 4th quarter valued at $37,000. 65.98% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

In related news, SVP Anthony T. Skiadas sold 10,744 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, May 1st. The stock was sold at an average price of $57.10, for a total transaction of $613,482.40. Following the completion of the transaction, the senior vice president now owns 27,501 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $1,570,307.10. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through the SEC website. 0.07% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

A number of research analysts have weighed in on the company. Royal Bank of Canada restated a “hold” rating on shares of Verizon Communications in a report on Monday, April 27th. Cowen upgraded Verizon Communications from a “market perform” rating to an “outperform” rating and set a $61.00 target price for the company in a research note on Monday, March 2nd. Barclays reiterated a “hold” rating and issued a $54.00 price objective on shares of Verizon Communications in a research note on Friday, April 17th. Nomura restated a “hold” rating and set a $61.00 price target on shares of Verizon Communications in a research note on Sunday, April 26th. Finally, Raymond James upped their price objective on Verizon Communications from $58.00 to $61.00 and gave the stock an “outperform” rating in a report on Monday, April 27th. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, sixteen have issued a hold rating, six have given a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the stock. The stock has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $61.44.

Shares of NYSE:VZ opened at $53.84 on Friday. Verizon Communications Inc. has a fifty-two week low of $48.84 and a fifty-two week high of $62.22. The business has a 50-day moving average of $56.53 and a two-hundred day moving average of $58.13. The stock has a market capitalization of $224.53 billion, a P/E ratio of 12.18, a P/E/G ratio of 3.64 and a beta of 0.48. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 2.02, a current ratio of 0.99 and a quick ratio of 0.95.

Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Friday, April 24th. The cell phone carrier reported $1.26 earnings per share for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.22 by $0.04. Verizon Communications had a return on equity of 33.26% and a net margin of 14.00%. The company had revenue of $31.81 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $32.37 billion. During the same quarter in the previous year, the firm earned $1.20 earnings per share. The business’s quarterly revenue was down 1.0% compared to the same quarter last year. As a group, research analysts expect that Verizon Communications Inc. will post 4.77 EPS for the current fiscal year.

Verizon Communications announced that its board has authorized a stock repurchase plan on Thursday, February 6th that authorizes the company to repurchase 100,000,000 outstanding shares. This repurchase authorization authorizes the cell phone carrier to purchase shares of its stock through open market purchases. Stock repurchase plans are generally an indication that the company’s management believes its stock is undervalued.

The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, May 1st. Investors 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 dividend yield of 4.57%. Verizon Communications’s dividend payout ratio is presently 51.14%.

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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