Verizon Communications (VZ) - NYSE
  • Today, 2:53 PM
    • Verizon (NYSE:VZ) is set to pay $4.8B to acquire Yahoo (NASDAQ:YHOO) in a deal that is likely to be announced before the market opens Monday, according to Bloomberg.
    • As reported in the past few days, the deal will include core Internet assets as well as Yahoo's real estate, though some intellectual property will be sold separately.
    • After those sales, Yahoo would hold its stakes in Yahoo Japan and Alibaba Group (combined value of about $40B).
    • Verizon's expected to keep its new purchase relatively intact in a bid to combine it with AOL and compete with Google and Facebook in digital ads "by tapping into users on sites like Yahoo Finance," Bloomberg notes.
    • Previously: Verizon's Yahoo interest includes real estate, not IP; Munster: 'Great outcome' (Jul. 22 2016)
    • Previously: Verizon reported to be close to landing Yahoo (Jul. 22 2016)
    | Today, 2:53 PM | 43 Comments
  • Fri, Jul. 22, 12:44 PM
    • Leaks that Verizon (VZ +1%) continues to be the front-runner to close a deal for core Yahoo (YHOO +1%) have the telecom spending about $5B on the deal, vs. an earlier $3.75B-$4B.
    • While earlier Verizon interest excluded Yahoo's patent portfolio and real estate, the current talks do reportedly include the real estate.
    • Yahoo had set aside about 3,000 patents into a subsidiary called Excalibur for separate auction by Black Stone IP, though other bidders like AT&T (T +1.5%) or a group with Quicken Loans' Dan Gilbert (still reportedly talking with Yahoo) or an aggressive TPG might yet want to buy the IP along with core assets.
    • The deal would be a "great outcome," Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster says, with time of the essence since "the real value here is unlocking Yahoo Japan and Alibaba (BABA +0.1%) in a cash-free transaction. And they really need to get that done before the election."
    • The $5B figure is still a bit low, Munster says, as he expects the deal to be around $6B. "If you look at the tax benefit for Yahoo Japan and Alibaba, that's about a $10B or $11B tax benefit, so a billion dollars here and there doesn't make much difference; there's still upside to Yahoo shares."
    | Fri, Jul. 22, 12:44 PM | 31 Comments
  • Fri, Jul. 22, 8:48 AM
    • Verizon (NYSE:VZ) is close to landing a deal to acquire Yahoo (NASDAQ:YHOO), according to a Bloomberg headline.
    • An announcement on a deal is anticipated within a few days.
    • Shares of Yahoo are up 1.21% premarket to $39.32. VZ -0.36% to $55.17.
    | Fri, Jul. 22, 8:48 AM | 57 Comments
  • Thu, Jul. 21, 11:27 AM
    • The FCC is "pausing" its 180-day review of Verizon's (NYSE:VZ) $1.8B deal to buy XO Communications' fiber-optic business as it looks for more information.
    • The carrier came to the deal to buy the fiber business of Carl Icahn's XO in February, along with an agreement to lease XO wireless spectrum and an option to buy.
    • Later in the spring, Dish Network pressed the FCC to reject the deal, saying it would give Verizon near-exclusive control of 5G spectrum as well as dampen current and future competition between Verizon and XO in a number of markets.
    | Thu, Jul. 21, 11:27 AM | 1 Comment
  • Wed, Jul. 20, 11:27 AM
    • In a strong environment for telecom and dividend payers, Verizon (VZ -0.5%) has gotten a downgrade from Oppenheimer & Co., which is raising a number of issues including valuation.
    • The firm reduced its rating on shares to Market Perform. After YTD gains of more than 20%, the stock is now $2 above Oppenheimer's price target, and sitting relatively high on several metrics, analyst Tim Horan writes.
    • Verizon's commitment to spending in the FCC's current spectrum auction -- it put $10B into the AWS-3 auction last year, leading to sales of cell towers and wireline operations -- is an uncertainty, along with the outcome of an auction at Yahoo.
    • "Verizon's acknowledged interest in Yahoo's assets and the broadcast incentive auction in particular as well as a change in FCC leadership have historically pressured wireless stocks, as have the two-year (Apple) iPhone refresh," Horan writes. "We believe a clear path to wireless revenue growth in second half 2017 is key."
    • Citigroup today downgraded the stock to Market Perform as well.
    • Verizon is set to report earnings next Tuesday.
    | Wed, Jul. 20, 11:27 AM | 8 Comments
  • Tue, Jul. 19, 1:13 PM
    • The typical metrics that telecom investors examine may not matter as much to their holdings as a favorable macroeconomic environment, industry analyst Craig Moffett writes.
    • That's accounting for the price war as well as common bellwethers like average revenue per user, he says. In most industries, developments like telecom has seen in the past year (Verizon's (VZ -0.5%) recent moves to reset pricing; T-Mobile's (TMUS -0.3%) un-carrier promotions; aggressive phone financing revamps) would spur meaty debates about valuation and growth: "But telecom isn't most industries. It has now been a full decade since fundamentals were last a major part of the telco equity performance story (good or bad)."
    • Fundamentals may matter again soon, ahead of a new iPhone introduction (that could benefit T-Mobile and Sprint (S -3.9%) more than AT&T and Verizon), and AT&T's (T -0.2%) full integration of DirecTV finances.
    • But in the meantime, macro factors are still prevalent: "When interest rates are falling and the dollar is rising, the story appears to have been pretty straightforward, after all: Buy telecom."
    | Tue, Jul. 19, 1:13 PM | 18 Comments
  • Tue, Jul. 19, 9:27 AM
    • Five bidders are left after a final deadline in an auction for the core business of Yahoo (NASDAQ:YHOO), CNBC reports.
    • The company hadn't provided details with its earnings report yesterday other than to say it was deep into proposals.
    • It's now expected to finish the bidding process entirely by the end of July.
    • There's yet no word on who the five are, but numerous media reports have zoomed in on Verizon (NYSE:VZ) as a favorite, with AT&T (NYSE:T) still in the running along with private-equity combinations and a group led by Quicken Loans' Dan Gilbert and backed by Warren Buffett.
    | Tue, Jul. 19, 9:27 AM | 27 Comments
  • Fri, Jul. 15, 10:02 AM
    • Thomas Lee from Fundstrat Market & Equity Research ("our research process combines both top-down strategy and bottoms-up fundamental views, to develop a roadmap of practical and useful investment insights for our clients") identifies 15 stocks that meet his criteria for his current “highest conviction” strategies, which he calls “laggards become leaders” and “stocks are the new bonds.”
    • The following stocks are in 1 of 16 groups that have lagged in the bull market (laggards), and have dividend yield greater than the their long-term bond yield (stocks are the new bonds): APD, CAT, CSCO, CVX, HP, IBM, OXY, PCAR, PG, PX, RL, SLB, T, VZ, XOM.
    | Fri, Jul. 15, 10:02 AM | 36 Comments
  • Thu, Jul. 14, 3:38 PM
    • The FCC voted unanimously today to open up four bands of frequencies above 24 GHz for 5G wireless service, setting the stage for exploiting next-generation technologies for mobile transmission.
    • That's nearly 11 GHz of spectrum (3.85 GHz in licensed bands at 28 GHz, 37 GHz and 39 GHz, and 7 GHz in an unlicensed band between 64 GHz and 71 GHz).
    • The agency says companies will be able to exploit the spectrum for "fiber-fast" capabilities, up to 100 times faster than current 4G networks.
    • In addition, the agency pledged to push for opening up more millimeter wave bands as quickly as it can, via a Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking that looks to apply today's rules to another 18 GHz of spectrum (in eight additional high-frequency bands)
    • In related stocks: (T +0.5%); (VZ -0.2%); (TMUS -0.5%); (S +1.9%); (DISH +1%); (CMCSA +0.4%); (STRP +5.7%); (GSAT -1.2%)
    | Thu, Jul. 14, 3:38 PM | 35 Comments
  • Thu, Jul. 14, 1:40 PM
    • FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler says in a blog post that he won't offer up new rules regarding retransmission-rights negotiations between TV programmers and providers.
    • The stance comes alongside an increasing environment for disputes and lengthy blackouts of TV service as pay-TV companies and content creators tussle over the increasing costs of programming.
    • Based on staff review, "it is clear that more rules in this area are not what we need at this point ... So, today I announce that we will not proceed at this time to adopt additional rules governing good faith negotiations for retransmission consent."
    • Wheeler says Congress could yet expand the FCC's scope of authority which could provide for more action. But "What we need is not more rules, but for both sides in retransmission consent negotiations to take seriously their responsibility to consumers."
    • Dish Network (NASDAQ:DISH) and Tribune Media (NYSE:TRCO) are in the middle of an ongoing fight, including a blackout.
    • Pay TV players: CMCSA, TWC, CHTR, CVC/OTCPK:ATCEY, T, DISH, VZ, FTR, CTL
    | Thu, Jul. 14, 1:40 PM | 3 Comments
  • Wed, Jul. 13, 7:31 PM
    • House testimony today indicates that an FCC proposal to open the market for TV set-top boxes may be losing its majority.
    • FCC Commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel -- considered a swing vote here -- acknowledged under questioning that the proposal (voted to move forward on party lines in February) was flawed.
    • Asked by Rep. Marsha Blackburn to answer only yes/no, Rosenworcel and GOP commissioners Ajit Pai and Michael O'Rielly said "yes" to the question "Do you agree that the initial FCC set-top proposal is flawed?" Rosenworcel also said "yes" to "Do you agree that if the FCC is to move forward, it should follow a different approach than outlined in the NPRM?"
    • FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler admitted that a "Ditch the Box" counter-proposal from the TV industry, focused on using apps, showed "promise," but said "One page is not a proposal; it is a press release."
    • Pay TV players: CMCSA, TWC, CHTR, CVC/OTCPK:OTCPK:ATCEY, T, DISH, VZ, FTR, CTL
    | Wed, Jul. 13, 7:31 PM | 13 Comments
  • Fri, Jul. 8, 4:47 PM
    • Verizon (VZ +0.9%) is boosting its Go90 streaming video service by hiring a former YouTube exec.
    • Ivana Kirkbride is joining Go90 as its chief content officer after a stint at Vessel, and will pursue original content for the mobile service, which also features a mix of licensed shows along with digital content from partners like BuzzFeed and AwesomenessTV.
    • Kirkbride had helped launch original channels at YouTube after joining that video service in 2011; she eventually led YouTube's unscripted original series initiative in 2014. She joined Vessel last September as VP of content acquisition, working for former Hulu chief Jason Kilar.
    | Fri, Jul. 8, 4:47 PM | 1 Comment
  • Fri, Jul. 8, 1:46 PM
    • An auction of Verizon's (VZ +0.9%) data centers has moved to a second round, CTFN reports.
    • The carrier had launched a sales effort at the beginning of the year with hopes to drawing $2.5B or more.
    • Now rumored suitors include Providence Equity, Carlyle Group (NASDAQ:CG) and Blackstone Group (NYSE:BX) among those who might pay $2.5B-$3B, a price that weeds out a lot of strategic buyers.
    • The move to sell data centers -- news that was shot down in the fall by CFO Fran Shammo -- would be a reversal of its actions five years ago, when it paid $1.4B for Terremark in a move into hosting and co-location.
    | Fri, Jul. 8, 1:46 PM | 2 Comments
  • Thu, Jul. 7, 6:09 PM
    • The reaction on Wall Street has been fairly blithe to news of wireless price increases from Verizon (VZ -1.6%), which touched a 16-year high this week -- likely because analysts are reading the company's price hikes as more of a price cut.
    • That's when you look at pricing from the data perspective, per gigabyte. Prices are going up about 13% on average, Nomura's Jeffrey Kvaal notes, but price per GB is dropping about 20% on average (the smallest plan, for example, goes to $35/month from $30 but doubles data to 2 GB).
    • For the most part, analysts are signaling that contrary to conventional wisdom, Verizon's moves are defensive and they mean that the price war isn't over.
    • "It is being reported that VZ is raising prices and that shows the competition is not hurting them," says Wells Fargo's Jennifer Fritzsche. "We are not sure this is the correct conclusion ... in some ways a case could be made with these new plans and offerings VZ is acting more 'me too' to meet some of the perks which VZ's competitors are already offering."
    • Verizon's anti-overage moves -- a $5 "safety mode" and offer to roll over unused data -- also signal an acquiescence to customers' overage-related pains.
    | Thu, Jul. 7, 6:09 PM | 17 Comments
  • Wed, Jul. 6, 1:28 PM
    • In a news conference, Verizon (VZ -0.2%) confirmed changes to its plans and a revamped digital approach via a redesigned My Verizon app.
    • As expected, its five data bucket sizes are increasing, but with slightly higher costs (its smallest plan goes up by $5/month to $35 but doubles data to 2 GB from 1 GB, while its "XXL" plan goes up $10 to $110 but offers 24 GB rather than 18 GB).
    • A revamped app (auto-updated for existing My Verizon app users) will bring more visibility into data usage, the company says: A "data hub" will always say exactly how much data remains, where data is being used and who on the plan is using it. Verizon says it also offers simplified billing, personalized offers, and e-commerce options to shop for and upgrade devices without leaving the app.
    • Among other announcements today, a data carryover feature will move unused gigabytes to the following month automatically; a "safety mode" will block overages and simply throttle customers to 128 kbps rather than 4G, once they hit their data limit (free to XL/XXL size plans, $5/month otherwise); "data boost" will let customers add a GB of 4G data for $15 at any time; and improved Mexico/Canada coverage (unlimited talk/text and no data roaming surcharges for XL and larger plans).
    | Wed, Jul. 6, 1:28 PM | 16 Comments
  • Tue, Jul. 5, 3:44 PM
    • Verizon's (VZ +0.8%) setting an overhaul to its plans, including a speculated price hike, but one that will come with more data.
    • Last year the company resized its data plans using a clothing-size metaphor, from small to double-extra large.
    • Now, it's looking to raise the price on its "S" plan to $35/month from $30, but double its size to 2 GB. Similarly, the "M" plan will go to $50 from $45, but increase to 4 GB from 3 GB; "L" up to $70 from $60, with data increasing to 8 GB from 6 GB; "XL" to $90 from $80, with data going to 16 GB from 12 GB; and "XXL" to $110/month from $100, but with 24GB, up from 18 GB.
    • Verizon will also add a rollover data program and improve access to Canada and Mexico (following in competitive footsteps there, as carriers work to provide better North American access). It's promising a news conference tomorrow to discuss unveiling a "transformational" wireless experience.
    • The carrier will reportedly "grandfather" existing customers who are happy with their plans in order to let them keep the terms they want.
    | Tue, Jul. 5, 3:44 PM | 19 Comments
Company Description
Verizon Communications Inc. operates as a holding company, which provides broadband, wireless and wireline communications services to consumer, business, government and wholesale customers. It operates through Wireless and Wireline segments. The Wireless segment provides communications products... More
Sector: Technology
Industry: Telecom Services - Domestic
Country: United States