Equities analysts predict that Lithia Motors, Inc. (NYSE:LAD) will report earnings per share of $2.12 for the current fiscal quarter, Zacks Investment Research reports. Four analysts have issued estimates for Lithia Motors’ earnings, with the highest EPS estimate coming in at $2.24 and the lowest estimate coming in at $2.04. Lithia Motors reported earnings of $1.86 per share during the same quarter last year, which would suggest a positive year over year growth rate of 14%. The business is expected to report its next quarterly earnings report on Wednesday, February 21st.

On average, analysts expect that Lithia Motors will report full-year earnings of $8.37 per share for the current fiscal year, with EPS estimates ranging from $8.30 to $8.60. For the next fiscal year, analysts anticipate that the business will post earnings of $9.22 per share, with EPS estimates ranging from $8.85 to $9.54. Zacks’ EPS averages are a mean average based on a survey of sell-side analysts that cover Lithia Motors.

Lithia Motors (NYSE:LAD) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, October 25th. The company reported $2.18 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $2.37 by ($0.19). Lithia Motors had a net margin of 2.14% and a return on equity of 21.02%. The company had revenue of $2.69 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $2.62 billion. During the same quarter last year, the firm earned $2.06 EPS. The business’s revenue was up 18.7% on a year-over-year basis.

Several research firms have issued reports on LAD. Morgan Stanley reiterated an “overweight” rating and set a $116.00 target price (up previously from $106.00) on shares of Lithia Motors in a research report on Wednesday, August 2nd. Berenberg Bank began coverage on Lithia Motors in a research report on Wednesday, October 4th. They set a “hold” rating and a $126.00 target price on the stock. Zacks Investment Research upgraded Lithia Motors from a “hold” rating to a “strong-buy” rating and set a $121.00 target price on the stock in a research report on Wednesday, August 23rd. KeyCorp reiterated a “buy” rating and set a $130.00 target price on shares of Lithia Motors in a research report on Monday, November 13th. Finally, Jefferies Group reiterated a “buy” rating and set a $125.00 target price on shares of Lithia Motors in a research report on Thursday, August 3rd. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, five have given a hold rating and three have assigned a buy rating to the company. Lithia Motors has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $116.29.

Lithia Motors (NYSE:LAD) traded up $0.11 during midday trading on Friday, reaching $115.34. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 133,000 shares, compared to its average volume of 267,890. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.96, a current ratio of 1.21 and a quick ratio of 0.26. Lithia Motors has a 52 week low of $80.88 and a 52 week high of $123.50. The firm has a market cap of $2,875.91, a PE ratio of 14.23, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 0.98 and a beta of 1.72.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, November 24th. Stockholders of record on Friday, November 10th were paid a dividend of $0.27 per share. This represents a $1.08 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 0.94%. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, November 9th. Lithia Motors’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 13.12%.

In other news, Director Kenneth E. Roberts sold 25,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, September 27th. The stock was sold at an average price of $117.19, for a total transaction of $2,929,750.00. Following the sale, the director now owns 130,598 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $15,304,779.62. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this hyperlink. Also, Director Thomas R. Becker sold 1,031 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, August 31st. The stock was sold at an average price of $107.10, for a total value of $110,420.10. Following the sale, the director now directly owns 65,704 shares in the company, valued at approximately $7,036,898.40. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold a total of 115,624 shares of company stock worth $13,811,193 in the last three months. Corporate insiders own 7.85% of the company’s stock.

Several large investors have recently made changes to their positions in LAD. Victory Capital Management Inc. boosted its stake in shares of Lithia Motors by 139.5% during the 2nd quarter. Victory Capital Management Inc. now owns 955,783 shares of the company’s stock worth $90,063,000 after acquiring an additional 556,684 shares in the last quarter. Harbour Capital Advisors LLC boosted its stake in shares of Lithia Motors by 6,308.0% during the 2nd quarter. Harbour Capital Advisors LLC now owns 383,516 shares of the company’s stock worth $4,070,000 after acquiring an additional 377,531 shares in the last quarter. Aberdeen Asset Management PLC UK purchased a new stake in shares of Lithia Motors during the 2nd quarter worth approximately $32,031,000. Koch Industries Inc. purchased a new stake in shares of Lithia Motors during the 2nd quarter worth approximately $201,000. Finally, Mesirow Financial Investment Management Equity Management purchased a new stake in shares of Lithia Motors during the 3rd quarter worth approximately $20,620,000. 98.47% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

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About Lithia Motors

Lithia Motors, Inc is an operator of automotive franchises and a retailer of new and used vehicles and related services. As of February 28, 2017, it offered 30 brands of new vehicles and all brands of used vehicles in 154 stores in the United States and online at Lithia.com, DCHauto.com and CarboneCars.com.

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Earnings History and Estimates for Lithia Motors (NYSE:LAD)

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