Does Verizon Have a Bright Future?

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With shares of Verizon (NYSE:VZ) trading around $48, is VZ an OUTPERFORM, WAIT AND SEE, or STAY AWAY? Let’s analyze the stock with the relevant sections of our CHEAT SHEET investing framework:

T = Trends for a Stock’s Movement

Verizon is a provider of communications, information, and entertainment products and services to consumers, businesses, and governmental agencies. It operates in two primary segments: Verizon Wireless and Wireline. Verizon Wireless’ communications products and services include wireless voice, data services, and equipment sales, which are provided to consumer, business, and government customers across the United States. Wireline’s communications products and services include voice, Internet access, broadband video and data, Internet protocol network services, network access, long distance, and other services.

Numerous tech giants have been eager to publish what they can about government data requests, but telecoms haven’t been so forthcoming. Verizon is breaking some ground, though, with plans to publish semi-annual transparency reports starting in early 2014. While the reports will mostly reflect information that the carrier has already been publishing in some form, the data will be more accessible and consistent than before. Much like Google, Verizon plans to break down requests by type, such as court orders and warrants. It’s also asking the government if it can be more precise with the number of National Security Letters it received last year. Although it’s doubtful that the reports will reveal everything that the public would like to know, they represent a big step forward for a communications industry that many believe is too eager to cooperate with government eavesdroppers.

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