Wall Street analysts forecast that Lithia Motors, Inc. (NYSE:LAD) will report $2.39 earnings per share (EPS) for the current quarter, according to Zacks Investment Research. Three analysts have issued estimates for Lithia Motors’ earnings, with the lowest EPS estimate coming in at $2.33 and the highest estimate coming in at $2.44. Lithia Motors reported earnings per share of $2.06 in the same quarter last year, which indicates a positive year over year growth rate of 16%. The business is scheduled to issue its next quarterly earnings results on Thursday, October 19th.

According to Zacks, analysts expect that Lithia Motors will report full year earnings of $8.63 per share for the current financial year, with EPS estimates ranging from $8.60 to $8.70. For the next fiscal year, analysts expect that the company will report earnings of $9.44 per share, with EPS estimates ranging from $8.85 to $10.00. Zacks Investment Research’s earnings per share averages are an average based on a survey of research analysts that that provide coverage for Lithia Motors.

Lithia Motors (NYSE:LAD) last posted its earnings results on Friday, July 28th. The company reported $2.28 earnings per share for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $2.23 by $0.05. The business had revenue of $2.47 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $2.45 billion. Lithia Motors had a return on equity of 21.66% and a net margin of 2.26%. The firm’s revenue was up 15.6% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the previous year, the firm earned $1.96 EPS.

A number of research firms have issued reports on LAD. Bank of America Corporation downgraded Lithia Motors from a “neutral” rating to an “underperform” rating and set a $92.00 target price for the company. in a research report on Friday, June 16th. Morgan Stanley reissued an “overweight” rating and set a $116.00 price objective (up previously from $106.00) on shares of Lithia Motors in a research note on Wednesday, August 2nd. BidaskClub raised Lithia Motors from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Wednesday, July 5th. Zacks Investment Research raised Lithia Motors from a “hold” rating to a “strong-buy” rating and set a $121.00 price objective for the company in a research note on Wednesday, August 23rd. Finally, Jefferies Group LLC reaffirmed a “buy” rating and set a $115.00 price target on shares of Lithia Motors in a research note on Wednesday, June 28th. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, three have issued a hold rating, four have given a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the stock. The stock has an average rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $112.00.

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In other news, CEO Bryan B. Deboer sold 316 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Monday, June 12th. The stock was sold at an average price of $97.19, for a total value of $30,712.04. Following the completion of the sale, the chief executive officer now directly owns 113,867 shares in the company, valued at approximately $11,066,733.73. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at the SEC website. Also, Director Thomas R. Becker sold 1,031 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction 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 completion of the sale, the director now owns 65,704 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $7,036,898.40. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold a total of 236,700 shares of company stock worth $23,887,068 over the last three months. Insiders own 7.85% of the company’s stock.

Several large investors have recently bought and sold shares of the company. Russell Investments Group Ltd. increased its stake in Lithia Motors by 5.5% in the 1st quarter. Russell Investments Group Ltd. now owns 162,623 shares of the company’s stock worth $13,928,000 after buying an additional 8,548 shares in the last quarter. Wells Fargo & Company MN grew its position in shares of Lithia Motors by 20.6% during the first quarter. Wells Fargo & Company MN now owns 326,881 shares of the company’s stock valued at $27,998,000 after purchasing an additional 55,905 shares in the last quarter. Great West Life Assurance Co. Can grew its position in shares of Lithia Motors by 8.5% during the first quarter. Great West Life Assurance Co. Can now owns 33,185 shares of the company’s stock valued at $2,842,000 after purchasing an additional 2,599 shares in the last quarter. Tyers Asset Management LLC grew its position in shares of Lithia Motors by 21.1% during the first quarter. Tyers Asset Management LLC now owns 1,288 shares of the company’s stock valued at $110,000 after purchasing an additional 224 shares in the last quarter. Finally, First Trust Advisors LP grew its position in shares of Lithia Motors by 68.5% during the first quarter. First Trust Advisors LP now owns 20,379 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,745,000 after purchasing an additional 8,286 shares in the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 98.47% of the company’s stock.

Lithia Motors (NYSE:LAD) traded up 0.98% on Friday, hitting $110.47. The company had a trading volume of 200,649 shares. Lithia Motors has a one year low of $75.85 and a one year high of $110.79. The stock has a 50 day moving average of $103.61 and a 200-day moving average of $94.67. The stock has a market capitalization of $2.76 billion, a PE ratio of 13.32 and a beta of 1.73.

The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, August 25th. Investors of record on Friday, August 11th were given a $0.27 dividend. The ex-dividend date was Wednesday, August 9th. This represents a $1.08 annualized dividend and a yield of 0.98%. Lithia Motors’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 13.01%.

Lithia Motors Company Profile

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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