Epoch Investment Partners Inc. lowered its position in BCE Inc. (NYSE:BCE) (TSE:BCE) by 4.6% during the 3rd quarter, according to the company in its most recent Form 13F filing with the SEC. The firm owned 573,032 shares of the utilities provider’s stock after selling 27,732 shares during the quarter. Epoch Investment Partners Inc.’s holdings in BCE were worth $23,219,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.
Several other institutional investors have also recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Toronto Dominion Bank increased its holdings 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 during the period. FIL Ltd increased its holdings 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 during the period. Franklin Resources Inc. increased its holdings in shares of BCE by 0.9% in the third quarter. Franklin Resources Inc. now owns 7,808,347 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $316,128,000 after purchasing an additional 70,912 shares during the period. Bank of Nova Scotia increased its holdings in shares of BCE by 7.5% in the second quarter. Bank of Nova Scotia now owns 7,634,042 shares of the utilities provider’s stock worth $308,683,000 after purchasing an additional 531,998 shares during the period. Finally, Charles Schwab Investment Advisory Inc. bought a new position in shares of BCE in the second quarter worth $273,156,000. 42.52% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.
Several research analysts have recently weighed in on the stock. Edward Jones raised shares of BCE from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a report on Monday, August 13th. TD Securities reaffirmed a “hold” rating on shares of BCE in a report on Wednesday, October 24th. Barclays decreased their price target on shares of BCE from $50.00 to $47.00 and set an “overweight” rating on the stock in a report on Friday, November 2nd. Royal Bank of Canada reaffirmed a “hold” rating on shares of BCE in a report on Friday, November 2nd. Finally, ValuEngine raised shares of BCE from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Wednesday, October 24th. Four research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and four have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $45.50.
BCE opened at $42.80 on Friday. The firm has a market capitalization of $38.61 billion, a P/E ratio of 16.41, a PEG ratio of 4.64 and a beta of 0.34. The company has a current ratio of 0.57, a quick ratio of 0.53 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.14. BCE Inc. has a 52 week low of $38.75 and a 52 week high of $49.06.
BCE (NYSE:BCE) (TSE:BCE) last released its earnings results on Thursday, November 1st. The utilities provider reported $0.74 EPS for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.71 by $0.03. The business had revenue of $5.88 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $5.85 billion. BCE had a return on equity of 18.73% and a net margin of 12.13%. The firm’s revenue was up 3.2% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm earned $0.86 earnings per share. As a group, sell-side analysts anticipate that BCE Inc. will post 2.65 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.
The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, January 15th. Investors of record on Friday, December 14th will be paid a $0.574 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, December 13th. This represents a $2.30 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 5.36%. BCE’s dividend payout ratio is presently 88.55%.
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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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