Level 3 Communications Gains Boost as P/E Languishes
The popularity of Level 3 Communications, Inc. (NYSE:LVLT) also gained a boost during the first quarter, with the number of hedge funds invested having reached 52, or 6.8% of the funds followed by Insider Monkey, up from 41 at the start of the quarter. The combined holdings of those 52 funds amounted to 17.9% of the company’s common stock. Mason Hawkins‘ Southeastern Asset Management is betting big on Level 3 Communications, Inc. (NYSE:LVLT), having a position in the stock which accounts for roughly 15% of its equity portfolio. According to its latest 13F filing, the fund holds 30 million shares of the company, valued at $1.58 billion. Level 3 Communications, Inc. (NYSE:LVLT) has a market cap of $19 billion and does not pay a dividend. The stock is currently trading at a trailing Price-to-Earnings (P/E) ratio of 5.49, significantly lower than the industry average of 19.00, as reported by Morningstar. Shares are down by 2% this year.
T-Mobile Trying to Entice Customers By Making Them Owners
At the end of the first quarter, T-Mobile US Inc (NASDAQ:TMUS) could be found in the portfolios of 52 of the elite hedge funds in our system, up from 50 a quarter earlier. Peter Rathjens, Bruce Clarke and John Campbell’s fund, Arrowstreet Capital, was among those that initiated a fresh stake in T-Mobile US Inc (NASDAQ:TMUS) during the quarter, amassing 2.96 million shares worth north of $113 million. Billionaire Andreas Halvorsen also joined the party, with his fund Viking Global having bought 2.68 million shares valued at $102 million during the quarter. The management of T-Mobile US Inc (NASDAQ:TMUS) has resorted to unconventional measures to try and attract more subscribers. Current customers will get one share of T-Mobile, currently trading at $42.30 apiece, and will have the option to gain up to 100 shares per year by referring new clients. A prolific tweeter, T-Mobile CEO John Legere, wrote on the social network: “The carriers want to screw you. We want to take you to dinner and a movie.” The company is also offering coupons for free pizza and movie rentals.
Troubles Ahead for Verizon?
The hedge funds in our database stepped up their interest in Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ) during the first quarter, as the number of long positions in the stock rose to 61 from 52. Warren Buffett‘s Berkshire Hathaway is still the largest shareholder of Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ) in our database, as it holds a little over 15 million shares worth $811 million at the end of March. Meanwhile, Phill Gross and Robert Atchinson’s Adage Capital Management lifted its stake by 46% to 6.07 million shares valued at $328 million. The stock recovered quickly from the selloff at the beginning of 2016 and rose by 29% before settling into a trading range between $50 and $54 per share. At a recent telecom conference in London, Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ) Chief Financial Officer Fran Shammo, said that the company’s second quarter earnings will be affected by the recent seven-week strike of its wireline employees. According to Mr. Shammo, Verizon expects a $0.05-to-$0.07 impact on its bottom line from the ordeal.