Moors & Cabot Inc. boosted its stake in shares of BCE Inc. (NYSE:BCE) (TSE:BCE) by 8.4% during the 4th quarter, according to its most recent 13F filing with the SEC. The firm owned 16,207 shares of the utilities provider’s stock after buying an additional 1,251 shares during the period. Moors & Cabot Inc.’s holdings in BCE were worth $779,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.
A number of other large investors also recently added to or reduced their stakes in BCE. DAVENPORT & Co LLC increased its stake in BCE by 6.5% in the fourth quarter. DAVENPORT & Co LLC now owns 61,496 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $2,952,000 after purchasing an additional 3,729 shares during the period. Guardian Capital LP increased its stake in BCE by 1.8% in the third quarter. Guardian Capital LP now owns 1,350,728 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $63,117,000 after purchasing an additional 24,427 shares during the period. MHI Funds LLC purchased a new stake in BCE in the fourth quarter worth $2,760,000. APG Asset Management N.V. increased its stake in BCE by 39.4% in the fourth quarter. APG Asset Management N.V. now owns 6,260,116 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $251,237,000 after purchasing an additional 1,768,100 shares during the period. Finally, Argent Trust Co bought a new position in shares of BCE during the 3rd quarter worth $309,000. Institutional investors own 45.35% of the company’s stock.
BCE has been the topic of a number of recent research reports. Zacks Investment Research raised BCE from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $52.00 price target on the stock in a research report on Friday, February 2nd. Bank of America initiated coverage on BCE in a research report on Tuesday, November 21st. They set a “buy” rating and a $54.00 price target on the stock. Morgan Stanley increased their price target on BCE from $60.00 to $62.00 and gave the stock an “equal weight” rating in a research report on Friday, November 17th. Desjardins downgraded BCE from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Friday, January 12th. Finally, Barclays increased their price target on BCE from $51.00 to $52.00 and gave the stock an “overweight” rating in a research report on Friday, February 9th. Four investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, five have issued a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the company. BCE currently has an average rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $56.00.
BCE (NYSE:BCE) (TSE:BCE) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, February 8th. The utilities provider reported $0.60 earnings per share for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.59 by $0.01. BCE had a return on equity of 19.85% and a net margin of 12.25%. The company had revenue of $5.96 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $5.96 billion. During the same quarter last year, the company earned $0.76 earnings per share. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was up 4.5% compared to the same quarter last year. equities analysts anticipate that BCE Inc. will post 2.74 EPS for the current fiscal year.
BCE announced that its Board of Directors has authorized a share repurchase plan on Thursday, February 8th that authorizes the company to buyback $175.00 million in outstanding shares. This buyback authorization authorizes the utilities provider to buy shares of its stock through open market purchases. Shares buyback plans are usually an indication that the company’s board of directors believes its shares are undervalued.
The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Sunday, April 15th. Investors of record on Thursday, March 15th will be given a dividend of $0.601 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Wednesday, March 14th. This represents a $2.40 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 5.53%. This is an increase from BCE’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.56. BCE’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 92.37%.
BCE Inc is a communications company. The Company’s segments include Bell Wireless, Bell Wireline and Bell Media. Its Bell Wireless segment provides wireless voice and data communications products and services to its residential, small and medium-sized business and large enterprise customers across Canada.
Receive News & Ratings for BCE Daily - Enter your email address below to receive a concise daily summary of the latest news and analysts' ratings for BCE and related companies with MarketBeat.com's FREE daily email newsletter.