Vodafone Group PLC (NASDAQ:VOD) shares gapped up before the market opened on Wednesday after the company announced a dividend. The stock had previously closed at $27.70, but opened at $28.85. Vodafone Group PLC shares last traded at $30.48, with a volume of 9634500 shares trading hands.

The newly announced dividend which will be paid on Friday, February 2nd. Shareholders of record on Friday, November 24th will be given a dividend of $0.5642 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Wednesday, November 22nd. This represents a yield of 3.68%.

A number of analysts recently weighed in on VOD shares. J P Morgan Chase & Co reiterated a “buy” rating on shares of Vodafone Group PLC in a research report on Monday, July 31st. Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of Vodafone Group PLC from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report on Tuesday. Bank of America Corporation upgraded shares of Vodafone Group PLC from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $32.56 price target on the stock in a research report on Wednesday, August 9th. BidaskClub upgraded shares of Vodafone Group PLC from a “buy” rating to a “strong-buy” rating in a research report on Friday, August 4th. Finally, UBS AG reiterated a “buy” rating on shares of Vodafone Group PLC in a research report on Monday, October 2nd. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, five have assigned a hold rating, five have assigned a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the company. The company presently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $31.52.

The company has a quick ratio of 0.99, a current ratio of 1.01 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.47.

Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Fisher Asset Management LLC lifted its holdings in Vodafone Group PLC by 4.7% during the 3rd quarter. Fisher Asset Management LLC now owns 24,824,481 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock valued at $706,505,000 after purchasing an additional 1,121,862 shares during the last quarter. Federated Investors Inc. PA lifted its holdings in Vodafone Group PLC by 5.4% during the 2nd quarter. Federated Investors Inc. PA now owns 9,620,051 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock valued at $276,384,000 after purchasing an additional 492,968 shares during the last quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP lifted its holdings in Vodafone Group PLC by 5.3% during the 3rd quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 7,630,584 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock valued at $217,166,000 after purchasing an additional 386,931 shares during the last quarter. Renaissance Technologies LLC lifted its holdings in Vodafone Group PLC by 9.0% during the 2nd quarter. Renaissance Technologies LLC now owns 5,641,400 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock valued at $162,077,000 after purchasing an additional 467,200 shares during the last quarter. Finally, BlackRock Inc. lifted its holdings in Vodafone Group PLC by 8,534.1% during the 1st quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 4,340,342 shares of the cell phone carrier’s stock valued at $114,716,000 after purchasing an additional 4,290,072 shares during the last quarter. 10.00% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

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About Vodafone Group PLC

Vodafone Group Plc (Vodafone) is a telecommunications company. The Company’s business is organized into two geographic regions: Europe, and Africa, Middle East and Asia Pacific (AMAP). Its segments include Europe and AMAP. Its Europe segment includes geographic regions, such as Germany, Italy, the United Kingdom, Spain and Other Europe.

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