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What You Should Know about Verizon’s 2018 Capex Budget

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Verizon’s capex

Let’s take a look at Verizon (VZ), which has reached significant spending levels on its capital expenditures (or capex) to improve its network and acquire additional spectrum for future use. In the first quarter, Verizon spent $4.6 billion on capex, up from $3.1 billion in the first quarter of 2017.

In the first quarter, the wireless service provider devoted much of its capital spending on network-related items to maintain leadership in its markets. Verizon is expected to devote much of its capital spending in its wireline component for Fios installations and the wireless component for 4G LTE densification.

During the JPMorgan Global Technology, Media, and Communications Conference held on May 16, Matt Ellis, Verizon’s EVP and chief financial officer, spoke about Verizon’s capex. Ellis stated that the company expects capital expenditures for fiscal 2018 to reach a guidance range of $17.0 billion–$17.8 billion. 

Ellis noted, “If we see an opportunity to accelerate some of the 5G spend to maximize an opportunity in the marketplace and we can do that in an efficient fashion, we’re not afraid to do so.”

Peers’ expected capex investments in 2018

In comparison, AT&T (T) expects to spend approximately $25.0 billion on capital expenditures. T-Mobile (TMUS) expects its cash capex to come in at $4.9 billion–$5.3 billion, excluding capitalized interest.

Sprint (S) expects its cash capital expenditures to reach $5.0 billion–$6.0 billion in fiscal 2018,[1. fiscal 2018 ending March 2019] which excludes leased devices.

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