Group 1 Automotive (GPI) Board of Directors Authorizes Stock Repurchase Plan

Group 1 Automotive (NYSE:GPI) announced that its board has initiated a stock buyback program, which permits the company to repurchase $100.00 million in shares on Wednesday, May 16th. This repurchase authorization permits the company to buy up to 6.7% of its stock through open market purchases. Stock repurchase programs are generally an indication that the company’s board of directors believes its stock is undervalued.

Group 1 Automotive opened at $71.82 on Friday, according to MarketBeat Ratings. The firm has a market capitalization of $1.49 billion, a PE ratio of 9.29, a PEG ratio of 1.20 and a beta of 1.75. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.17, a current ratio of 1.06 and a quick ratio of 0.27. Group 1 Automotive has a 1 year low of $51.62 and a 1 year high of $84.47.

Group 1 Automotive (NYSE:GPI) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, April 26th. The company reported $1.70 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.54 by $0.16. The company had revenue of $2.86 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $2.66 billion. Group 1 Automotive had a net margin of 1.86% and a return on equity of 15.47%. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was up 13.5% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the prior year, the business earned $1.53 earnings per share. analysts forecast that Group 1 Automotive will post 8.47 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, June 15th. Investors of record on Friday, June 1st will be given a dividend of $0.26 per share. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, May 31st. This represents a $1.04 annualized dividend and a yield of 1.45%. Group 1 Automotive’s payout ratio is currently 13.45%.

Several research firms have recently issued reports on GPI. Guggenheim began coverage on shares of Group 1 Automotive in a research note on Monday, April 16th. They issued a “neutral” rating for the company. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Group 1 Automotive from a “hold” rating to a “strong-buy” rating and set a $92.00 target price for the company in a research note on Wednesday, January 31st. Bank of America upped their target price on shares of Group 1 Automotive from $103.00 to $105.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research note on Friday, February 9th. Morgan Stanley upped their target price on shares of Group 1 Automotive from $53.00 to $62.00 and gave the stock an “underweight” rating in a research note on Wednesday, March 14th. Finally, Buckingham Research lowered shares of Group 1 Automotive from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating in a research note on Tuesday, March 20th. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have issued a hold rating and one has assigned a buy rating to the company. Group 1 Automotive presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $83.13.

About Group 1 Automotive

Group 1 Automotive, Inc, through its subsidiaries, operates in the automotive retail industry. It sells new and used cars, light trucks, and vehicle parts; arranges vehicle financing; sells service and insurance contracts; and provides automotive maintenance and repair services. The company has operations primarily in the metropolitan areas of Alabama, California, Florida, Georgia, Kansas, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Mississippi, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, Oklahoma, South Carolina, and Texas in the United States; 28 towns in the United Kingdom; and in the metropolitan markets of Sao Paulo, Parana, Mato Grosso do Sul, and Santa Catarina, Brazil.

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