Lithia Motors (NYSE:LAD) Raised to “Hold” at StockNews.com

StockNews.com upgraded shares of Lithia Motors (NYSE:LADFree Report) from a sell rating to a hold rating in a research note published on Monday morning.

Other research analysts also recently issued research reports about the stock. Evercore ISI initiated coverage on shares of Lithia Motors in a report on Wednesday, January 17th. They issued an outperform rating and a $400.00 price target for the company. Wells Fargo & Company raised their price objective on shares of Lithia Motors from $298.00 to $315.00 and gave the stock an equal weight rating in a research note on Thursday, February 15th. Stephens reissued an overweight rating and issued a $375.00 price objective on shares of Lithia Motors in a research note on Wednesday, February 14th. The Goldman Sachs Group raised their price objective on shares of Lithia Motors from $300.00 to $334.00 and gave the stock a neutral rating in a research note on Thursday, February 15th. Finally, Morgan Stanley raised their price objective on shares of Lithia Motors from $220.00 to $230.00 and gave the stock an underweight rating in a research note on Thursday, February 29th. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, five have assigned a hold rating and four have assigned a buy rating to the company. According to MarketBeat.com, Lithia Motors presently has a consensus rating of Hold and an average price target of $336.40.

Check Out Our Latest Stock Report on Lithia Motors

Lithia Motors Stock Up 3.4 %

Shares of NYSE:LAD opened at $294.47 on Monday. The company has a current ratio of 1.41, a quick ratio of 0.45 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.15. Lithia Motors has a 12 month low of $203.65 and a 12 month high of $331.96. The company has a 50-day moving average price of $293.53 and a 200 day moving average price of $286.67. The company has a market cap of $8.11 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 8.12, a PEG ratio of 2.49 and a beta of 1.59.

Lithia Motors (NYSE:LADGet Free Report) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, February 14th. The company reported $8.24 EPS for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $8.11 by $0.13. Lithia Motors had a net margin of 3.22% and a return on equity of 17.33%. The firm had revenue of $7.67 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $7.95 billion. During the same quarter last year, the firm earned $9.05 EPS. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was up 10.5% compared to the same quarter last year. As a group, equities research analysts predict that Lithia Motors will post 35.27 earnings per share for the current year.

Lithia Motors Dividend Announcement

The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, March 22nd. Investors of record on Saturday, March 9th will be issued a dividend of $0.50 per share. This represents a $2.00 annualized dividend and a yield of 0.68%. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, March 7th. Lithia Motors’s payout ratio is 5.51%.

Insider Activity at Lithia Motors

In related news, Director Shauna Mcintyre sold 135 shares of Lithia Motors stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, February 16th. The shares were sold at an average price of $297.84, for a total transaction of $40,208.40. Following the transaction, the director now directly owns 1,662 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $495,010.08. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is accessible through this link. 1.90% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.

Hedge Funds Weigh In On Lithia Motors

Several institutional investors and hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of the company. Vanguard Group Inc. grew its holdings in Lithia Motors by 0.6% in the fourth quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 2,823,369 shares of the company’s stock worth $929,679,000 after purchasing an additional 15,962 shares during the last quarter. Wellington Management Group LLP grew its holdings in Lithia Motors by 413.6% in the fourth quarter. Wellington Management Group LLP now owns 65,142 shares of the company’s stock worth $21,450,000 after purchasing an additional 52,458 shares during the last quarter. Goldman Sachs Group Inc. grew its holdings in Lithia Motors by 24.6% in the fourth quarter. Goldman Sachs Group Inc. now owns 49,797 shares of the company’s stock worth $16,397,000 after purchasing an additional 9,818 shares during the last quarter. Eventide Asset Management LLC grew its holdings in Lithia Motors by 8.2% in the fourth quarter. Eventide Asset Management LLC now owns 267,877 shares of the company’s stock worth $88,207,000 after purchasing an additional 20,363 shares during the last quarter. Finally, FIL Ltd grew its holdings in Lithia Motors by 50.0% in the fourth quarter. FIL Ltd now owns 15,000 shares of the company’s stock worth $4,939,000 after purchasing an additional 5,000 shares during the last quarter.

Lithia Motors Company Profile

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Lithia Motors, Inc operates as an automotive retailer worldwide. It operates in two segments, Vehicle Operations and Financing Operations. The company's Vehicle Operations segment sells new and used vehicles; provides parts, repair, and maintenance services; vehicle finance; and insurance products.

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Analyst Recommendations for Lithia Motors (NYSE:LAD)

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