Lithia Motors Inc (NYSE:LAD) – Jefferies Group increased their Q2 2018 earnings per share (EPS) estimates for Lithia Motors in a note issued to investors on Wednesday, according to Zacks Investment Research. Jefferies Group analyst B. Jordan now forecasts that the company will post earnings per share of $2.86 for the quarter, up from their previous forecast of $2.48. Jefferies Group also issued estimates for Lithia Motors’ Q4 2018 earnings at $2.62 EPS, FY2018 earnings at $10.52 EPS and FY2019 earnings at $11.64 EPS.
A number of other research analysts have also commented on the company. Stephens reaffirmed a “buy” rating on shares of Lithia Motors in a report on Thursday, February 15th. Morgan Stanley upped their price objective on Lithia Motors from $116.00 to $126.00 and gave the company an “overweight” rating in a report on Wednesday. Zacks Investment Research raised Lithia Motors from a “hold” rating to a “strong-buy” rating and set a $139.00 price objective on the stock in a report on Wednesday, January 10th. Buckingham Research decreased their price objective on Lithia Motors from $137.00 to $131.00 and set a “buy” rating on the stock in a report on Thursday, February 15th. Finally, Bank of America raised Lithia Motors from an “underperform” rating to a “neutral” rating and set a $128.00 price objective on the stock in a report on Monday, January 8th. Five equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and five have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock presently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $129.29.
Lithia Motors (NYSE:LAD) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, February 14th. The company reported $2.15 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $2.09 by $0.06. Lithia Motors had a return on equity of 20.81% and a net margin of 2.43%. The company had revenue of $2.70 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $2.70 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the business posted $1.86 EPS. The business’s revenue was up 18.0% compared to the same quarter last year.
Several institutional investors and hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in LAD. Canada Pension Plan Investment Board acquired a new stake in shares of Lithia Motors during the 3rd quarter worth $144,000. Public Employees Retirement System of Ohio grew its holdings in shares of Lithia Motors by 12.7% during the 2nd quarter. Public Employees Retirement System of Ohio now owns 1,806 shares of the company’s stock worth $170,000 after purchasing an additional 204 shares in the last quarter. Contravisory Investment Management Inc. grew its holdings in shares of Lithia Motors by 174.9% during the 4th quarter. Contravisory Investment Management Inc. now owns 1,655 shares of the company’s stock worth $188,000 after purchasing an additional 1,053 shares in the last quarter. Ladenburg Thalmann Financial Services Inc. grew its holdings in shares of Lithia Motors by 142.7% during the 4th quarter. Ladenburg Thalmann Financial Services Inc. now owns 1,648 shares of the company’s stock worth $188,000 after purchasing an additional 969 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Koch Industries Inc. acquired a new stake in shares of Lithia Motors during the 2nd quarter worth $201,000.
In other news, Director Kenneth E. Roberts sold 5,000 shares of the stock in a transaction on Friday, January 26th. The stock was sold at an average price of $126.00, for a total transaction of $630,000.00. Following the sale, the director now directly owns 105,064 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $13,238,064. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is accessible through the SEC website. Corporate insiders own 7.85% of the company’s stock.
The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, March 23rd. Stockholders of record on Friday, March 9th will be issued a dividend of $0.27 per share. This represents a $1.08 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.01%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, March 8th. Lithia Motors’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is currently 9.76%.
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Lithia Motors Company Profile
Lithia Motors, Inc is an operator of automotive franchises and a retailer of new and used vehicles and related services. As of February 28, 2017, it offered 30 brands of new vehicles and all brands of used vehicles in 154 stores in the United States and online at Lithia.com, DCHauto.com and CarboneCars.com.
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