Asbury Automotive Group Inc (ABG) Debt Trading 0.5% Lower

An issue of Asbury Automotive Group Inc (NYSE:ABG) bonds fell 0.5% as a percentage of their face value during trading on Thursday. The high-yield debt issue has a 6% coupon and will mature on December 15, 2024. The bonds in the issue are now trading at $103.50 and were trading at $105.88 one week ago. Price moves in a company’s bonds in credit markets sometimes anticipate parallel moves in its share price.

ABG has been the subject of a number of recent analyst reports. TheStreet upgraded Asbury Automotive Group from a “c+” rating to a “b-” rating in a research report on Wednesday, September 27th. Zacks Investment Research upgraded Asbury Automotive Group from a “strong sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Tuesday, August 8th. Jefferies Group LLC reiterated a “hold” rating and set a $61.00 target price (down from $68.00) on shares of Asbury Automotive Group in a research report on Wednesday, July 26th. Deutsche Bank AG reiterated a “hold” rating and set a $58.00 target price (down from $60.00) on shares of Asbury Automotive Group in a research report on Wednesday, July 26th. Finally, Craig Hallum reiterated a “hold” rating and set a $55.00 target price (down from $65.00) on shares of Asbury Automotive Group in a research report on Wednesday, July 26th. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, four have issued a hold rating and one has issued a buy rating to the company. The company presently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $56.75.

Shares of Asbury Automotive Group Inc (ABG) traded up $0.05 during mid-day trading on Friday, hitting $61.75. The company had a trading volume of 236,139 shares, compared to its average volume of 238,798. The company has a current ratio of 1.25, a quick ratio of 0.38 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 2.60. Asbury Automotive Group Inc has a twelve month low of $49.10 and a twelve month high of $71.00. The company has a market cap of $1,290.00, a P/E ratio of 9.99, a P/E/G ratio of 1.10 and a beta of 1.55.

Asbury Automotive Group (NYSE:ABG) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, October 24th. The company reported $1.48 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $1.57 by ($0.09). Asbury Automotive Group had a return on equity of 42.24% and a net margin of 2.54%. The business had revenue of $1.60 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $1.68 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company earned $1.52 earnings per share. Asbury Automotive Group’s quarterly revenue was down 4.8% compared to the same quarter last year. analysts anticipate that Asbury Automotive Group Inc will post 6.28 EPS for the current year.

In related news, CEO Craig T. Monaghan sold 16,096 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Friday, October 27th. The stock was sold at an average price of $61.08, for a total transaction of $983,143.68. Following the completion of the sale, the chief executive officer now directly owns 125,408 shares in the company, valued at approximately $7,659,920.64. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available through this link. Also, Director Dennis E. Clements sold 5,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Friday, September 15th. The stock was sold at an average price of $58.66, for a total value of $293,300.00. Following the sale, the director now owns 20,531 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $1,204,348.46. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last 90 days, insiders have sold 269,384 shares of company stock valued at $16,620,080. 11.90% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

Hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in the stock. SG Americas Securities LLC bought a new stake in shares of Asbury Automotive Group during the 2nd quarter worth $1,291,000. Aperio Group LLC increased its holdings in Asbury Automotive Group by 0.7% in the 2nd quarter. Aperio Group LLC now owns 7,100 shares of the company’s stock worth $402,000 after purchasing an additional 51 shares in the last quarter. Schwab Charles Investment Management Inc. increased its holdings in Asbury Automotive Group by 8.3% in the 1st quarter. Schwab Charles Investment Management Inc. now owns 171,667 shares of the company’s stock worth $10,318,000 after purchasing an additional 13,156 shares in the last quarter. Chicago Equity Partners LLC increased its holdings in Asbury Automotive Group by 98.6% in the 2nd quarter. Chicago Equity Partners LLC now owns 35,080 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,984,000 after purchasing an additional 17,420 shares in the last quarter. Finally, River Road Asset Management LLC increased its holdings in Asbury Automotive Group by 34.6% in the 2nd quarter. River Road Asset Management LLC now owns 478,834 shares of the company’s stock worth $27,078,000 after purchasing an additional 122,969 shares in the last quarter.

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About Asbury Automotive Group

Asbury Automotive Group, Inc is an automotive retailer in the United States. As of December 31, 2016, the Company owned and operated 93 new vehicle franchises, representing 28 brands of automobiles at 77 dealership locations, and 23 collision centers in the United States. In addition, as of December 31, 2016, it owned and operated two standalone used vehicle stores in Florida.

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