Down 5% in 2022, is the Telstra share price a buy today?

Many investors might be wondering where the ASX 200 telco is heading next.

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Key points

  • 2022 has been a rough year for ASX 200 shares, and Telstra is no exception
  • Since the start of the year, Telstra has lost around 5% of its value
  • Morgans and Morgan Stanley weigh in with their ratings on the telco

It hasn’t been a great year for the Telstra Corporation Ltd (ASX: TLS) share price so far in 2022. Since the start of the year, Telstra shares have gone from $4.22 to the $3.97 they are commanding at the time of writing today (down 0.75% so far). That’s a year-to-date drop of 5.2%, just slightly more than the S&P/ASX 200 Index (ASX: XJO) has given back.

Some investors might be disappointed with this performance. After all, Telstra has been a fairly rewarding investment in recent years. Over 2021, the Telstra share price rose by a very pleasing 40% or so. The company also managed to keep its arguably generous annual dividend of a fully franked 16 cents per share intact over 2020 and 2021. This would have been of great comfort to many investors enduring savage dividend cuts from many other ASX blue-chip shares, over 2020 in particular.

But now the Telstra share price has somewhat stagnated in 2022, many investors might be wondering where the ASX 200 telco is heading next.

Is the Telstra share price a buy or a sell today?

Well, one broker who reckons the future is bright for Telstra shares is Morgans. As my Fool colleague covered last week, Morgans has recently rated Telstra as an “add” with a 12-month share price target of $4.56. If that came to pass, it would give Telstra an upside of almost 15% on current pricing. That’s not including any dividend returns either. Speaking of, Morgans is expecting the telco to keep its 16 cents per share annual dividend flowing for the rest of FY2022 and in FY2023.

The broker also likes what it sees in Telstra’s new T25 cost-cutting strategy, which comes after the successful implementation of its predecessor, T22. This, Morgans says, results in a sunny outlook for the company.

So that’s what one ASX broker reckons Telstra shares have in store.

Earlier this month we also heard from another ASX broker in Morgan Stanley. As we covered at the time, Morgan Stanley also slapped a buy rating on Telstra shares, replete with a 12-month share price target of $4.60. That’s even more bullish than Morgans. This broker is pencilling in substantial earnings growth through to FY2025.

Thus, it appears more than one ASX broker thinks Telstra shares are a buy today. It will be interesting to see if their predictions prove accurate.

In the meantime, the current Telstra share price gives this ASX 200 telco a market capitalisation of $46.65 billion, with a dividend yield of 4.02%.

Motley Fool contributor Sebastian Bowen owns Telstra Corporation Limited. The Motley Fool Australia's parent company Motley Fool Holdings Inc. has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia owns and has recommended Telstra Corporation Limited. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Bruce Jackson.

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