T-Mobile stock is now worth more than Verizon’s.
David Paul Morris/Bloomberg
There’s a new top dog in the U.S. telecom industry.
US now has a larger market capitalization than
As of Tuesday’s close, T-Mobile’s (ticker: TMUS) market cap stood at $178 billion, ahead of Verizon’s (VZ) $173 billion and AT&T’s (T) $120 billion, according to Dow Jones Market Data.
T-Mobile stock finished the day down 0.1%, to $141.91, trimming its year-to-date gain to 22%. That compares with a 17% loss after dividends for the S&P 500 this year. Verizon stock has lost 18% after dividends and AT&T has lost 5%.
After a 0.5% decline on Tuesday, to $41.10, Verizon stock is at its lowest level since June 1, 2012. The shares have returned 59% since then thanks to dividends, versus the S&P 500’s 275% return and T-Mobile stock’s 1,611% return. AT&T stock has returned 18% over that period. T-Mobile stock is about 5% below its record high, set in July 2021.
T-Mobile’s newly established market-cap superiority is as much a function of its rise as Verizon’s decline. Since its acquisition of Sprint closed in 2020, T-Mobile has jumped to a lead in the 5G wireless era. As the costly integration phase of the combination nears a close, investors have piled into the stock ahead of a potentially massive share buyback program announcement.
That could retire close to two-thirds of the stock’s free float in the coming years, boosting earnings per share. On average, Wall Street analysts expect T-Mobile’s earnings to grow from $2.41 per share in 2021 to $11.54 in 2025. They expect Verizon’s and AT&T’s earnings per share to be about flat over that period.
Each company’s market value only reflects the equity portion of its capital structure—Tuesday’s closing stock price multiplied by the total number of shares outstanding. Verizon and AT&T both have significant debt on their balance sheets, which represents a claim to the value of the overall business. By enterprise value (equity plus debt, minus cash and equivalents), both remain more valuable than T-Mobile.
Verizon’s enterprise value was $320 billion at Tuesday’s close, versus AT&T’s $275 billion and T-Mobile’s $247 billion. Comcast has a market value of $158 billion and an enterprise value of $248 billion.
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