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AT&T Stock Is Up ~6% This Year, Down ~14% in the Past Year

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Stock price movement

As of February 11, AT&T (T) stock is trading at $29.71. Year-to-date, AT&T has risen nearly 5.8%, but it’s fallen 13.7% in the last year.

AT&T has a market cap of $216.3 billion as of February 11. Telecommunications rivals Verizon (VZ), T-Mobile (TMUS), Sprint (S), and Frontier (FTR) have market caps of $223.3 billion, $58.2 billion, $24.3 billion, and $220.6 million, respectively, as of the same date.

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Reasons for AT&T’s weak fourth-quarter performance

AT&T, the second-largest wireless provider in the United States, reported weak fourth-quarter results. The carrier missed its revenue estimate and posted earnings that were in line with its estimate.

AT&T’s adjusted earnings increased 10.3% YoY in the fourth quarter backed by solid performances in its WarnerMedia and Mobility segments. However, a higher effective tax rate and foreign currency headwinds pressured its earnings in the quarter. AT&T’s slowdown in wireless customer growth and significant declines in its pay-TV business also remained a drag in the quarter.

Though the company added postpaid phone customers in the fourth quarter, it also reported US pay-TV subscriber losses due to cord cutting. Its postpaid phone churn rate was 1% in the quarter, higher than the preceding quarter’s 0.93% and the previous year’s churn of 0.84%.

AT&T’s streaming service offering, DIRECTV NOW, also lost customers in the fourth quarter after the company stopped providing promotional offers to save on costs and reduce its debt. AT&T ended the quarter with $171 billion in debt.

Analysts’ recommendations

Of the 31 analysts covering AT&T, 15 have rated the stock as a “buy,” while 14 have rated it as a “hold.” Two analysts have given the stock “sell” ratings. Analysts have a target price of $33.76 and a median consensus estimate of $34.00 on the stock. AT&T is trading at a 12.6% discount to its consensus median target estimate as of February 11.

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