BCE Inc. (NYSE:BCE) Receives Average Rating of “Hold” from Analysts

BCE Inc. (NYSE:BCE) (TSE:BCE) has been assigned an average recommendation of “Hold” from the twelve ratings firms that are presently covering the company, Marketbeat.com reports. Seven investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold recommendation and five have assigned a buy recommendation to the company. The average twelve-month price target among analysts that have covered the stock in the last year is $59.33.

Several equities research analysts have recently issued reports on BCE shares. Scotiabank reaffirmed a “buy” rating on shares of BCE in a research report on Friday, August 16th. JPMorgan Chase & Co. downgraded BCE from an “overweight” rating to a “neutral” rating and set a $60.00 price target on the stock. in a research report on Monday, July 8th. BMO Capital Markets reaffirmed a “buy” rating and issued a $65.00 price target on shares of BCE in a research report on Monday, September 9th. Desjardins downgraded BCE to a “hold” rating in a research report on Friday, August 2nd. Finally, TD Securities raised their price target on BCE from $65.00 to $66.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Wednesday, October 2nd.

Several large investors have recently modified their holdings of the company. Meeder Asset Management Inc. bought a new stake in shares of BCE in the second quarter valued at about $25,000. Carroll Financial Associates Inc. lifted its stake in shares of BCE by 155.3% in the third quarter. Carroll Financial Associates Inc. now owns 697 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $33,000 after buying an additional 424 shares during the period. Lindbrook Capital LLC lifted its stake in shares of BCE by 72.9% in the second quarter. Lindbrook Capital LLC now owns 854 shares of the utilities provider’s stock valued at $38,000 after buying an additional 360 shares during the period. Griffin Asset Management Inc. bought a new stake in shares of BCE in the second quarter valued at about $51,000. Finally, Putnam FL Investment Management Co. bought a new stake in shares of BCE in the second quarter valued at about $57,000. 43.85% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

BCE stock traded down $0.05 during mid-day trading on Monday, hitting $48.88. 906,797 shares of the company’s stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 894,346. 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 has a market cap of $43.88 billion, a P/E ratio of 18.04, a P/E/G ratio of 5.18 and a beta of 0.39. BCE has a 1-year low of $38.75 and a 1-year high of $49.58. The stock has a 50 day moving average of $47.91 and a two-hundred day moving average of $46.05.

BCE (NYSE:BCE) (TSE:BCE) last posted its earnings results on Thursday, August 1st. The utilities provider reported $0.70 EPS for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.68 by $0.02. The firm had revenue of $5.93 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $5.90 billion. BCE had a net margin of 12.51% and a return on equity of 19.15%. The business’s quarterly revenue was up 2.5% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the prior year, the business posted $0.86 earnings per share. As a group, research analysts predict that BCE will post 2.68 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, October 15th. Stockholders of record on Monday, September 16th will be given a $0.601 dividend. This is an increase from BCE’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.59. This represents a $2.40 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 4.92%. The ex-dividend date is Friday, September 13th. BCE’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is currently 87.82%.

About BCE

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.

Featured Story: How interest rates affect municipal bond prices

Analyst Recommendations for BCE (NYSE:BCE)

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.