StockNews.com Lowers Lithia Motors (NYSE:LAD) to Hold

StockNews.com lowered shares of Lithia Motors (NYSE:LADGet Rating) from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research report released on Monday.

LAD has been the topic of several other research reports. JPMorgan Chase & Co. decreased their price target on Lithia Motors from $425.00 to $380.00 and set an overweight rating on the stock in a research note on Thursday, April 7th. Morgan Stanley decreased their price target on Lithia Motors from $300.00 to $260.00 and set an underweight rating on the stock in a research note on Friday, May 20th. Wells Fargo & Company decreased their price target on Lithia Motors from $362.00 to $350.00 and set an overweight rating on the stock in a research note on Thursday, April 21st. Finally, Guggenheim boosted their price target on Lithia Motors from $542.00 to $578.00 and gave the stock a buy rating in a research note on Thursday, April 21st. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, one has issued a hold rating and six have issued a buy rating to the stock. According to MarketBeat, the company currently has an average rating of Moderate Buy and a consensus price target of $425.83.

Shares of LAD opened at $286.66 on Monday. Lithia Motors has a twelve month low of $252.56 and a twelve month high of $387.63. The stock’s 50 day moving average is $289.88 and its two-hundred day moving average is $300.79. The firm has a market capitalization of $8.29 billion, a PE ratio of 6.83, a P/E/G ratio of 0.99 and a beta of 1.48. The company has a current ratio of 1.38, a quick ratio of 0.42 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.69.

Lithia Motors (NYSE:LADGet Rating) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, April 20th. The company reported $11.96 earnings per share for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $9.63 by $2.33. The company had revenue of $6.71 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $6.34 billion. Lithia Motors had a return on equity of 29.65% and a net margin of 4.95%. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was up 54.4% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the previous year, the company earned $5.89 EPS. On average, sell-side analysts predict that Lithia Motors will post 46.96 EPS for the current year.

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, May 27th. Shareholders of record on Friday, May 13th were issued a $0.42 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Thursday, May 12th. This is an increase from Lithia Motors’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.35. This represents a $1.68 annualized dividend and a yield of 0.59%. Lithia Motors’s payout ratio is 4.00%.

In other news, Director Sidney B. Deboer sold 998 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Monday, June 6th. The shares were sold at an average price of $310.01, for a total transaction of $309,389.98. Following the completion of the sale, the director now directly owns 50,779 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $15,741,997.79. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this link. Also, Director Sidney B. Deboer sold 5,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Tuesday, May 17th. The shares were sold at an average price of $305.00, for a total transaction of $1,525,000.00. Following the sale, the director now directly owns 50,779 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $15,487,595. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold a total of 10,998 shares of company stock valued at $3,394,840 over the last quarter. 1.70% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in LAD. HighTower Advisors LLC grew its stake in shares of Lithia Motors by 33.0% during the 3rd quarter. HighTower Advisors LLC now owns 867 shares of the company’s stock valued at $276,000 after buying an additional 215 shares during the period. Morgan Stanley boosted its position in Lithia Motors by 66.3% during the 3rd quarter. Morgan Stanley now owns 82,982 shares of the company’s stock worth $26,309,000 after purchasing an additional 33,071 shares during the period. MML Investors Services LLC boosted its position in Lithia Motors by 7.2% during the 3rd quarter. MML Investors Services LLC now owns 1,333 shares of the company’s stock worth $422,000 after purchasing an additional 89 shares during the period. LPL Financial LLC boosted its position in Lithia Motors by 17.6% during the 3rd quarter. LPL Financial LLC now owns 4,009 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,271,000 after purchasing an additional 600 shares during the period. Finally, Utah Retirement Systems boosted its position in Lithia Motors by 253.3% during the 3rd quarter. Utah Retirement Systems now owns 5,300 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,681,000 after purchasing an additional 3,800 shares during the period. 92.83% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

Lithia Motors Company Profile (Get Rating)

Lithia Motors, Inc operates as an automotive retailer in the United States. The company operates through three segments: Domestic, Import, and Luxury. It offers new and used vehicles; vehicle financing services; warranties, insurance contracts, and vehicle and theft protection services; and automotive repair and maintenance services, as well as sells vehicle body and parts under the Driveway and GreenCars brand names.

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Analyst Recommendations for Lithia Motors (NYSE:LAD)

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