Laurel Wealth Advisors Inc. increased its holdings in shares of BCE Inc. (NYSE:BCE) (TSE:BCE) by 1.3% during the 2nd quarter, according to its most recent Form 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The institutional investor owned 37,624 shares of the utilities provider’s stock after acquiring an additional 500 shares during the period. Laurel Wealth Advisors Inc.’s holdings in BCE were worth $1,711,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.
A number of other large investors have also bought and sold shares of the stock. TD Asset Management Inc. raised its holdings in BCE by 1.6% in the first quarter. TD Asset Management Inc. now owns 17,747,576 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $788,308,000 after buying an additional 274,189 shares during the last quarter. FIL Ltd raised its holdings in BCE by 11.8% in the first quarter. FIL Ltd now owns 14,041,935 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $623,526,000 after buying an additional 1,487,023 shares during the last quarter. Bank of Nova Scotia raised its holdings in BCE by 17.4% in the second quarter. Bank of Nova Scotia now owns 9,555,045 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $432,138,000 after buying an additional 1,416,703 shares during the last quarter. Great West Life Assurance Co. Can raised its holdings in BCE by 1.9% in the first quarter. Great West Life Assurance Co. Can now owns 7,931,450 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $350,868,000 after buying an additional 149,627 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Charles Schwab Investment Advisory Inc. raised its holdings in shares of BCE by 3.7% during the second quarter. Charles Schwab Investment Advisory Inc. now owns 7,697,691 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $350,091,000 after purchasing an additional 273,004 shares during the last quarter. 43.92% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.
Several research analysts have recently weighed in on the stock. Desjardins cut shares of BCE to a “hold” rating in a report on Friday, August 2nd. Zacks Investment Research cut shares of BCE from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating and set a $51.00 price objective for the company. in a report on Monday. BMO Capital Markets reissued a “buy” rating and set a $65.00 price objective on shares of BCE in a report on Monday. Scotiabank reissued a “buy” rating on shares of BCE in a report on Friday, August 16th. Finally, TD Securities raised shares of BCE from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $44.38 price objective for the company in a report on Tuesday, June 18th. Eight research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and four have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company currently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $55.73.
BCE stock traded down $0.61 during midday trading on Friday, reaching $48.06. 7,944 shares of the company’s stock traded hands, compared to its average volume of 806,088. BCE Inc. has a 52-week low of $38.75 and a 52-week high of $48.84. The stock has a market cap of $43.44 billion, a P/E ratio of 17.72, a PEG ratio of 5.13 and a beta of 0.40. The company has a current ratio of 0.57, a quick ratio of 0.53 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.33. The stock’s 50-day moving average is $46.63 and its 200 day moving average is $45.44.
BCE (NYSE:BCE) (TSE:BCE) last announced its earnings results on Thursday, August 1st. The utilities provider reported $0.70 EPS for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.68 by $0.02. The business had revenue of $5.93 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $5.90 billion. BCE had a net margin of 12.51% and a return on equity of 19.15%. The firm’s revenue was up 2.5% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the prior year, the company earned $0.86 earnings per share. As a group, research analysts expect that BCE Inc. will post 2.69 EPS for the current fiscal year.
The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, October 15th. Shareholders of record on Monday, September 16th will be given a $0.601 dividend. This is a positive change from BCE’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.59. This represents a $2.40 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 5.00%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Friday, September 13th. BCE’s dividend payout ratio is presently 87.45%.
BCE Inc, a telecommunications and media company, provides wireless, wireline, Internet, and television (TV) services to residential, business, and wholesale customers in Canada. It operates in three segments: Bell Wireless, Bell Wireline, and Bell Media. The Bell Wireless segment offers wireless voice and data communications products and services, including 40 live and on-demand channels on smartphones and tablets; roaming services; push-to-talk, field service management, worker safety, and mobility management solutions; and asset management, smart buildings, smart cities, fleet management, and other Internet of Things services.
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