Principal Financial Group Inc. reduced its position in Lithia Motors, Inc. (NYSE:LAD) by 1.5% in the second quarter, according to the company in its most recent filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission. The fund owned 184,084 shares of the company’s stock after selling 2,807 shares during the period. Principal Financial Group Inc. owned about 0.77% of Lithia Motors worth $17,346,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.
A number of other hedge funds and other institutional investors have also recently made changes to their positions in the stock. BlackRock Inc. raised its holdings in Lithia Motors by 152,203.5% in the 1st quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 2,901,382 shares of the company’s stock worth $248,504,000 after acquiring an additional 2,899,477 shares during the last quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. raised its holdings in Lithia Motors by 5.6% in the 1st quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 2,040,301 shares of the company’s stock worth $174,751,000 after acquiring an additional 107,578 shares during the last quarter. Neuberger Berman Group LLC raised its holdings in Lithia Motors by 10.4% in the 1st quarter. Neuberger Berman Group LLC now owns 1,466,628 shares of the company’s stock worth $125,617,000 after acquiring an additional 138,376 shares during the last quarter. Alliancebernstein L.P. raised its holdings in Lithia Motors by 17.4% in the 1st quarter. Alliancebernstein L.P. now owns 1,175,507 shares of the company’s stock worth $100,682,000 after acquiring an additional 174,277 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Victory Capital Management Inc. raised its holdings in Lithia Motors by 139.5% in 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 during the last quarter. Institutional investors own 98.47% of the company’s stock.
Lithia Motors, Inc. (NYSE LAD) opened at 113.88 on Friday. Lithia Motors, Inc. has a one year low of $75.85 and a one year high of $114.47. The company has a 50-day moving average of $105.36 and a 200-day moving average of $95.08. The stock has a market capitalization of $2.85 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 13.73 and a beta of 1.73.
Lithia Motors (NYSE:LAD) last posted its earnings results on Friday, July 28th. The company reported $2.28 EPS for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $2.23 by $0.05. Lithia Motors had a net margin of 2.26% and a return on equity of 21.66%. The company had revenue of $2.47 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $2.45 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company posted $1.96 earnings per share. Lithia Motors’s revenue for the quarter was up 15.6% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, equities analysts forecast that Lithia Motors, Inc. will post $8.62 EPS for the current fiscal year.
The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, August 25th. Investors of record on Friday, August 11th were given a dividend of $0.27 per share. The ex-dividend date was Wednesday, August 9th. This represents a $1.08 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 0.95%. Lithia Motors’s payout ratio is 13.01%.
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A number of brokerages recently weighed in on LAD. Bank of America Corporation lowered shares of Lithia Motors from a “neutral” rating to an “underperform” rating and set a $92.00 price objective for the company. in a report on Friday, June 16th. Morgan Stanley restated an “overweight” rating and issued a $116.00 price objective (up from $106.00) on shares of Lithia Motors in a report on Wednesday, August 2nd. BidaskClub upgraded shares of Lithia Motors from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Wednesday, July 5th. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Lithia Motors from a “hold” rating to a “strong-buy” rating and set a $121.00 price objective for the company in a report on Wednesday, August 23rd. Finally, Jefferies Group LLC restated a “buy” rating and issued a $115.00 price objective on shares of Lithia Motors in a report on Wednesday, June 28th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, three have issued a hold rating, four have assigned a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the stock. Lithia Motors has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $112.00.
In related news, Director Thomas R. Becker sold 1,031 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, August 31st. The shares were sold at an average price of $107.10, for a total transaction 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 transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, Director Susan O. Cain sold 1,000 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, August 8th. The shares were sold at an average price of $105.64, for a total transaction of $105,640.00. Following the sale, the director now directly owns 12,242 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $1,293,244.88. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold 219,870 shares of company stock valued at $22,252,261 in the last three months. 7.85% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.
Lithia Motors 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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