Zacks Investment Research cut shares of Asbury Automotive Group (NYSE:ABG) from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research report sent to investors on Monday morning, Zacks.com reports.

According to Zacks, “Asbury Automotive Group, Inc. is one of the largest automotive retailers. Asbury offers customers an extensive range of automotive products and services, including new and used vehicle sales and related financing and insurance, vehicle maintenance and repair services, replacement parts and service contracts. They sell used vehicles at all franchised dealership locations and stand-alone stores. Used vehicle sales include the sale of used vehicles to individual retail customers and the sale of used vehicles to other dealers at auction. They provide vehicle repair and maintenance services, sell replacement parts, and recondition used vehicles at all of our dealerships. “

ABG has been the subject of several other reports. JPMorgan Chase & Co. started coverage on Asbury Automotive Group in a research note on Tuesday, February 19th. They set a neutral rating and a $82.00 price objective for the company. Morgan Stanley upped their price objective on Asbury Automotive Group from $85.00 to $87.00 and gave the company an equal weight rating in a research note on Monday, May 6th. Finally, Craig Hallum raised Asbury Automotive Group from a hold rating to a buy rating and set a $90.00 price objective for the company in a research note on Wednesday, April 24th. Five research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and two have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The stock currently has an average rating of Hold and an average target price of $81.83.

Asbury Automotive Group stock opened at $79.62 on Monday. Asbury Automotive Group has a fifty-two week low of $58.60 and a fifty-two week high of $82.30. The company has a quick ratio of 0.33, a current ratio of 1.15 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.85. The stock has a market capitalization of $1.52 billion, a PE ratio of 9.47, a PEG ratio of 0.62 and a beta of 1.22.

Asbury Automotive Group (NYSE:ABG) last posted its earnings results on Tuesday, April 23rd. The company reported $2.20 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.92 by $0.28. Asbury Automotive Group had a return on equity of 36.35% and a net margin of 2.43%. The business had revenue of $1.67 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $1.67 billion. During the same period in the previous year, the business earned $1.93 EPS. The business’s quarterly revenue was up 3.8% on a year-over-year basis. On average, equities research analysts expect that Asbury Automotive Group will post 8.93 EPS for the current year.

In other Asbury Automotive Group news, SVP Jed Milstein sold 1,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, March 13th. The stock was sold at an average price of $69.41, for a total transaction of $69,410.00. Following the completion of the sale, the senior vice president now directly owns 13,027 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $904,204.07. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. Also, Director Dennis E. Clements sold 20,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, February 20th. The stock was sold at an average price of $71.10, for a total value of $1,422,000.00. Following the transaction, the director now owns 6,883 shares in the company, valued at approximately $489,381.30. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last ninety days, insiders have sold 67,599 shares of company stock valued at $5,080,979. 1.36% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the business. Bank of Montreal Can increased its position in Asbury Automotive Group by 26.1% during the 1st quarter. Bank of Montreal Can now owns 1,010 shares of the company’s stock worth $71,000 after purchasing an additional 209 shares during the period. PNC Financial Services Group Inc. increased its position in Asbury Automotive Group by 29.7% during the 4th quarter. PNC Financial Services Group Inc. now owns 1,419 shares of the company’s stock worth $95,000 after purchasing an additional 325 shares during the period. NumerixS Investment Technologies Inc acquired a new position in Asbury Automotive Group during the 1st quarter worth approximately $110,000. Zurcher Kantonalbank Zurich Cantonalbank increased its position in Asbury Automotive Group by 31.9% during the 4th quarter. Zurcher Kantonalbank Zurich Cantonalbank now owns 1,611 shares of the company’s stock worth $107,000 after purchasing an additional 390 shares during the period. Finally, Denali Advisors LLC increased its position in Asbury Automotive Group by 3,991.5% during the 1st quarter. Denali Advisors LLC now owns 1,923 shares of the company’s stock worth $133,000 after purchasing an additional 1,876 shares during the period.

Asbury Automotive Group Company Profile

Asbury Automotive Group, Inc, together with its subsidiaries, operates as an automotive retailer in the United States. It offers a range of automotive products and services, including new and used vehicles; and vehicle repair and maintenance services, replacement parts, and collision repair services.

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