Davis Rea LTD. decreased its holdings in shares of BCE Inc. (NYSE:BCE) (TSE:BCE) by 5.2% in the 4th quarter, according to the company in its most recent disclosure with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The fund owned 73,235 shares of the utilities provider’s stock after selling 4,040 shares during the period. BCE comprises about 1.9% of Davis Rea LTD.’s portfolio, making the stock its 22nd largest holding. Davis Rea LTD.’s holdings in BCE were worth $2,934,000 as of its most recent SEC filing.
Several other institutional investors have also recently added to or reduced their stakes in BCE. The Manufacturers Life Insurance Company lifted its position in shares of BCE by 11.0% in the third quarter. The Manufacturers Life Insurance Company now owns 12,817,975 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $519,384,000 after purchasing an additional 1,271,570 shares in the last quarter. Toronto Dominion Bank lifted its position in shares of BCE by 2.8% in the third quarter. Toronto Dominion Bank now owns 10,025,759 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $407,223,000 after purchasing an additional 272,114 shares in the last quarter. FIL Ltd lifted its position in shares of BCE by 1.2% in the third quarter. FIL Ltd now owns 8,084,544 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $327,538,000 after purchasing an additional 98,996 shares in the last quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. lifted its position in shares of BCE by 2.8% in the third quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 8,072,939 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $327,115,000 after purchasing an additional 220,625 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Vanguard Group Inc lifted its position in shares of BCE by 2.8% in the third quarter. Vanguard Group Inc now owns 8,072,939 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $327,115,000 after purchasing an additional 220,625 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 42.13% of the company’s stock.
A number of equities analysts recently commented on BCE shares. Echelon Wealth Partners restated a “hold” rating on shares of BCE in a report on Friday, February 8th. Zacks Investment Research downgraded BCE from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Monday, February 4th. National Bank Financial downgraded BCE from an “outperform” rating to a “sector perform” rating in a report on Friday, January 4th. Barclays lowered their price target on BCE from $50.00 to $47.00 and set an “overweight” rating on the stock in a report on Friday, November 2nd. Finally, Royal Bank of Canada reiterated a “hold” rating on shares of BCE in a report on Friday, November 2nd. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, five have given a hold rating and four have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The company presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $45.50.
BCE (NYSE:BCE) (TSE:BCE) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, February 7th. The utilities provider reported $0.67 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.66 by $0.01. BCE had a return on equity of 18.87% and a net margin of 12.30%. The company had revenue of $6.22 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $6.19 billion. During the same period last year, the business earned $0.82 earnings per share. The business’s revenue was up 3.0% on a year-over-year basis. As a group, sell-side analysts predict that BCE Inc. will post 2.68 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.
The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, April 15th. Stockholders of record on Friday, March 15th will be paid a $0.604 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, March 14th. This is a positive change from BCE’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.57. This represents a $2.42 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 5.61%. BCE’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 83.39%.
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BCE Inc, a telecommunications and media company, provides wireless, wireline, Internet, and television (TV) services to residential, business, and wholesale customers in Canada. The company operates through three segments: Bell Wireless, Bell Wireline, and Bell Media. The Bell Wireless segment offers integrated digital wireless voice and data communications products and services.
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