Lithia Motors (LAD) Upgraded to “Neutral” by Bank of America

Lithia Motors (NYSE:LAD) was upgraded by research analysts at Bank of America from an “underperform” rating to a “neutral” rating in a research report issued to clients and investors on Monday, January 8th, Marketbeat Ratings reports. The firm presently has a $128.00 target price on the stock. Bank of America’s price objective points to a potential upside of 6.64% from the company’s current price.

A number of other analysts also recently issued reports on the company. Zacks Investment Research raised Lithia Motors from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Tuesday, December 26th. KeyCorp reiterated a “buy” rating and issued a $130.00 price target on shares of Lithia Motors in a research report on Monday, November 13th. Finally, Berenberg Bank initiated coverage on Lithia Motors in a research report on Wednesday, October 4th. They issued a “hold” rating and a $126.00 price target for the company. Five analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, three have issued a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the company. The stock has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $124.00.

Lithia Motors (NYSE:LAD) traded down $1.35 during midday trading on Monday, reaching $120.03. The company had a trading volume of 140,300 shares, compared to its average volume of 238,227. Lithia Motors has a fifty-two week low of $80.88 and a fifty-two week high of $125.87. The firm has a market capitalization of $3,029.40, a PE ratio of 14.58, a P/E/G ratio of 0.63 and a beta of 1.72. The company has a quick ratio of 0.26, a current ratio of 1.21 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.96.

Lithia Motors (NYSE:LAD) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, October 25th. The company reported $2.18 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $2.37 by ($0.19). Lithia Motors had a return on equity of 21.02% and a net margin of 2.14%. The firm had revenue of $2.69 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $2.62 billion. During the same quarter in the previous year, the company posted $2.06 EPS. The firm’s revenue was up 18.7% on a year-over-year basis. sell-side analysts predict that Lithia Motors will post 8.34 earnings per share for the current year.

In other Lithia Motors news, Director Kenneth E. Roberts sold 5,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, January 8th. The stock was sold at an average price of $124.00, for a total transaction of $620,000.00. Following the transaction, the director now owns 110,064 shares in the company, valued at approximately $13,647,936. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. Also, Director Sidney B. Deboer sold 3,051 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, November 21st. The stock was sold at an average price of $113.25, for a total value of $345,525.75. Following the transaction, the director now owns 433 shares in the company, valued at approximately $49,037.25. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last three months, insiders sold 10,718 shares of company stock valued at $1,275,932. 7.85% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.

Several institutional investors and hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of the company. Schwab Charles Investment Management Inc. boosted its position in shares of Lithia Motors by 4.7% in the 4th quarter. Schwab Charles Investment Management Inc. now owns 173,063 shares of the company’s stock worth $19,659,000 after purchasing an additional 7,840 shares in the last quarter. Wasatch Advisors Inc. lifted its position in Lithia Motors by 141.9% in the 4th quarter. Wasatch Advisors Inc. now owns 129,037 shares of the company’s stock valued at $14,657,000 after acquiring an additional 75,686 shares in the last quarter. Louisiana State Employees Retirement System lifted its position in Lithia Motors by 6.2% in the 4th quarter. Louisiana State Employees Retirement System now owns 10,300 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,170,000 after acquiring an additional 600 shares in the last quarter. Parametric Portfolio Associates LLC lifted its position in Lithia Motors by 35.9% in the 3rd quarter. Parametric Portfolio Associates LLC now owns 126,213 shares of the company’s stock valued at $15,185,000 after acquiring an additional 33,369 shares in the last quarter. Finally, GSA Capital Partners LLP bought a new position in Lithia Motors in the 3rd quarter valued at approximately $773,000.

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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.

Analyst Recommendations for Lithia Motors (NYSE:LAD)

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