The Brokerages gives Consensus Recommendation of “Hold” to CenturyLink Inc. (CTL)

The Brokerages gives Consensus Recommendation of “Hold” to CenturyLink Inc. (CTL)

CenturyLink Inc. (NYSE:CTL) has received an average rating of “Hold” from the sixteen ratings firms that are currently covering the stock. Three equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell recommendation, ten have issued a hold recommendation and two have assigned a buy recommendation to the company. The average 1-year price target among brokerages that have issued a report on the stock in the last year is $28.60.

CTL has been the topic of a number of research reports. Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of CenturyLink from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Tuesday, October 4th. Vetr raised shares of CenturyLink from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $29.33 target price on the stock in a research note on Wednesday, August 31st. Macquarie initiated coverage on shares of CenturyLink in a research note on Monday, July 11th. They issued a “neutral” rating and a $31.00 target price on the stock. Jefferies Group reissued a “sell” rating on shares of CenturyLink in a research note on Friday, September 2nd. Finally, Evercore ISI initiated coverage on shares of CenturyLink in a research note on Tuesday, June 21st. They issued a “hold” rating and a $28.00 target price on the stock.

A number of large investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in CTL. Los Angeles Capital Management & Equity Research Inc. increased its stake in CenturyLink by 26.5% in the second quarter. Los Angeles Capital Management & Equity Research Inc. now owns 1,372,419 shares of the company’s stock valued at $39,814,000 after buying an additional 287,685 shares during the period. PGGM Investments increased its stake in CenturyLink by 10.0% in the second quarter. PGGM Investments now owns 1,462,121 shares of the company’s stock valued at $42,416,000 after buying an additional 132,536 shares during the period. Hancock Holding Co. increased its stake in CenturyLink by 6.3% in the second quarter. Hancock Holding Co. now owns 28,987 shares of the company’s stock valued at $841,000 after buying an additional 1,714 shares during the period. Panagora Asset Management Inc. increased its stake in CenturyLink by 32.1% in the first quarter. Panagora Asset Management Inc. now owns 2,511,649 shares of the company’s stock valued at $80,272,000 after buying an additional 610,495 shares during the period. Finally, Springbok Capital Management LLC purchased a new stake in CenturyLink during the first quarter valued at about $340,000. 73.33% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

CenturyLink (NYSE:CTL) traded up 0.18% during trading on Wednesday, reaching $27.69. 953,211 shares of the company’s stock traded hands. The stock has a market capitalization of $15.12 billion, a P/E ratio of 15.50 and a beta of 0.80. CenturyLink has a 1-year low of $21.94 and a 1-year high of $32.94. The stock has a 50-day moving average price of $27.75 and a 200 day moving average price of $29.14.

CenturyLink (NYSE:CTL) last issued its earnings results on Wednesday, August 3rd. The company reported $0.63 EPS for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.59 by $0.04. CenturyLink had a net margin of 5.47% and a return on equity of 11.02%. The business had revenue of $440 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $4.39 billion. During the same quarter last year, the firm posted $0.55 EPS. The business’s revenue for the quarter was down .5% compared to the same quarter last year. Equities research analysts expect that CenturyLink will post $2.53 earnings per share for the current year.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, September 16th. Investors of record on Friday, September 2nd were paid a dividend of $0.54 per share. This represents a $2.16 annualized dividend and a yield of 7.81%. The ex-dividend date was Wednesday, August 31st. CenturyLink’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 120.67%.

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