$2.91 EPS Expected for Lithia Motors Inc (NYSE:LAD) This Quarter

Brokerages forecast that Lithia Motors Inc (NYSE:LAD) will post earnings of $2.91 per share for the current fiscal quarter, Zacks reports. Three analysts have issued estimates for Lithia Motors’ earnings, with estimates ranging from $2.62 to $3.22. Lithia Motors reported earnings of $2.52 per share during the same quarter last year, which suggests a positive year over year growth rate of 15.5%. The business is expected to report its next quarterly earnings report on Wednesday, July 24th.

According to Zacks, analysts expect that Lithia Motors will report full year earnings of $11.15 per share for the current fiscal year, with EPS estimates ranging from $10.71 to $11.76. For the next fiscal year, analysts forecast that the firm will post earnings of $11.72 per share, with EPS estimates ranging from $11.00 to $12.75. Zacks’ EPS calculations are an average based on a survey of sell-side research analysts that follow Lithia Motors.

Lithia Motors (NYSE:LAD) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, April 24th. The company reported $2.44 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $2.15 by $0.29. The business had revenue of $2.85 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $2.86 billion. Lithia Motors had a return on equity of 20.68% and a net margin of 2.25%. The company’s quarterly revenue was up 7.1% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company earned $2.07 earnings per share.

A number of brokerages have recently commented on LAD. Longbow Research started coverage on Lithia Motors in a research report on Friday, May 31st. They issued a “buy” rating and a $132.00 price target on the stock. Morgan Stanley raised their price objective on shares of Lithia Motors from $117.00 to $128.00 and gave the stock an “overweight” rating in a research note on Monday, May 6th. Bank of America lowered shares of Lithia Motors from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating and lifted their price objective for the company from $102.00 to $115.00 in a report on Friday, April 26th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Buckingham Research lifted their price objective on shares of Lithia Motors from $106.00 to $120.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research note on Thursday, April 25th. Finally, Craig Hallum reiterated a “buy” rating and issued a $125.00 price objective (up previously from $103.00) on shares of Lithia Motors in a research report on Thursday, April 25th. Three analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and eight have given a buy rating to the company. The company presently has an average rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $118.78.

In other news, Director Sidney B. Deboer sold 15,433 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Friday, May 3rd. The stock was sold at an average price of $114.00, for a total transaction of $1,759,362.00. Following the completion of the sale, the director now directly owns 11,144 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,270,416. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is accessible through this hyperlink. 5.21% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

A number of large investors have recently made changes to their positions in LAD. Bank of Montreal Can grew its position in shares of Lithia Motors by 65.8% in the fourth quarter. Bank of Montreal Can now owns 1,096 shares of the company’s stock valued at $84,000 after purchasing an additional 435 shares in the last quarter. Zurcher Kantonalbank Zurich Cantonalbank grew its holdings in shares of Lithia Motors by 14.4% during the 4th quarter. Zurcher Kantonalbank Zurich Cantonalbank now owns 1,822 shares of the company’s stock worth $139,000 after acquiring an additional 230 shares during the period. Arizona State Retirement System grew its stake in shares of Lithia Motors by 3.1% in the 4th quarter. Arizona State Retirement System now owns 34,694 shares of the company’s stock worth $2,648,000 after buying an additional 1,031 shares during the last quarter. Crossmark Global Holdings Inc. lifted its position in Lithia Motors by 36.8% in the 4th quarter. Crossmark Global Holdings Inc. now owns 5,498 shares of the company’s stock valued at $420,000 after acquiring an additional 1,480 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Rhumbline Advisers lifted its holdings in shares of Lithia Motors by 16.5% during the 4th quarter. Rhumbline Advisers now owns 69,605 shares of the company’s stock valued at $5,313,000 after buying an additional 9,844 shares during the period.

LAD stock traded up $0.12 during mid-day trading on Thursday, hitting $118.12. 258,300 shares of the stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 252,465. Lithia Motors has a 12 month low of $67.90 and a 12 month high of $121.96. The company has a quick ratio of 0.23, a current ratio of 1.17 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.04. The firm has a market cap of $2.75 billion, a P/E ratio of 11.84, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.50 and a beta of 1.18.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, May 24th. Shareholders of record on Friday, May 10th were paid a $0.30 dividend. This is a boost from Lithia Motors’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.29. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Thursday, May 9th. This represents a $1.20 annualized dividend and a yield of 1.02%. Lithia Motors’s payout ratio is presently 12.02%.

About Lithia Motors

Lithia Motors, Inc operates automotive franchises, and retails new and used vehicles in the United States. The company operates in three segments: Domestic, Import, and Luxury. It sells new and used cars, replacement parts, vehicle service contracts, vehicle protection products, and credit insurance products; provides vehicle maintenance, warranty, paint, and repair services; and arranges related financing.

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