Lithia Motors (LAD) Sets New 52-Week High at $116.41

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Lithia Motors Inc (NYSE:LAD) reached a new 52-week high on Friday . The stock traded as high as $116.41 and last traded at $114.35, with a volume of 11312 shares traded. The stock had previously closed at $114.41.

LAD has been the subject of several research reports. TheStreet raised Lithia Motors from a “c+” rating to a “b-” rating in a research note on Tuesday, January 29th. Seaport Global Securities began coverage on Lithia Motors in a research note on Wednesday, February 13th. They set a “buy” rating and a $110.00 price objective for the company. Craig Hallum restated a “buy” rating and issued a $125.00 target price (up previously from $103.00) on shares of Lithia Motors in a report on Thursday, April 25th. Buckingham Research increased their target price on Lithia Motors from $106.00 to $120.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Thursday, April 25th. Finally, Zacks Investment Research upgraded Lithia Motors from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Wednesday, April 10th. Three research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and seven have issued a buy rating to the company. The stock presently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $117.13.

The firm has a market cap of $2.61 billion, a PE ratio of 11.54, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.44 and a beta of 1.28. The company has a quick ratio of 0.23, a current ratio of 1.17 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.04.

Lithia Motors (NYSE:LAD) last released its earnings results on Wednesday, April 24th. The company reported $2.44 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $2.15 by $0.29. The company had revenue of $2.85 billion during 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 revenue for the quarter 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. On average, sell-side analysts forecast that Lithia Motors Inc will post 11.07 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, May 24th. Stockholders of record on Friday, May 10th will be issued a $0.30 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, May 9th. This represents a $1.20 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 1.04%. This is a positive change from Lithia Motors’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.29. Lithia Motors’s dividend payout ratio is presently 12.02%.

In related news, CEO Bryan B. Deboer sold 3,835 shares of the stock in a transaction on Tuesday, February 26th. The stock was sold at an average price of $90.00, for a total transaction of $345,150.00. Following the completion of the sale, the chief executive officer now directly owns 153,285 shares in the company, valued at $13,795,650. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available through this hyperlink. Also, Director Sidney B. Deboer sold 15,433 shares of the stock in a transaction on Friday, May 3rd. The stock was sold at an average price of $114.00, for a total value of $1,759,362.00. Following the sale, the director now owns 11,144 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $1,270,416. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 5.21% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

Several large investors have recently made changes to their positions in LAD. Lakewood Capital Management LP raised its holdings in shares of Lithia Motors by 67.5% during the fourth quarter. Lakewood Capital Management LP now owns 769,169 shares of the company’s stock worth $58,711,000 after acquiring an additional 310,000 shares in the last quarter. Norges Bank purchased a new stake in shares of Lithia Motors during the fourth quarter worth $16,564,000. FMR LLC raised its holdings in shares of Lithia Motors by 6,081.4% during the first quarter. FMR LLC now owns 205,098 shares of the company’s stock worth $19,022,000 after acquiring an additional 201,780 shares in the last quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP raised its holdings in shares of Lithia Motors by 17.8% during the fourth quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 1,323,683 shares of the company’s stock worth $101,036,000 after acquiring an additional 200,381 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Thompson Siegel & Walmsley LLC purchased a new stake in shares of Lithia Motors during the first quarter worth $11,060,000.

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Lithia Motors Company Profile (NYSE:LAD)

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.

Further Reading: What is Net Asset Value (NAV)?

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