AutoNation, Inc. (AN) Earns Market Perform Rating from Wells Fargo & Company

Wells Fargo & Company reaffirmed their market perform rating on shares of AutoNation, Inc. (NYSE:AN) in a research note published on Monday, July 17th. They currently have a $45.00 price target on the stock, down from their previous price target of $48.50.

Several other equities analysts have also weighed in on AN. Deutsche Bank AG reissued a hold rating and issued a $50.00 price objective (down from $52.00) on shares of AutoNation in a research report on Saturday, April 29th. ValuEngine lowered shares of AutoNation from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research report on Friday, June 2nd. Northcoast Research raised shares of AutoNation from a neutral rating to a buy rating and set a $51.00 price target on the stock in a research report on Thursday, June 8th. Morgan Stanley lowered their price target on shares of AutoNation from $57.00 to $53.00 and set an overweight rating on the stock in a research report on Friday, June 9th. Finally, BidaskClub raised shares of AutoNation from a strong sell rating to a sell rating in a research report on Thursday, June 29th. Two analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have given a hold rating and three have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock currently has a consensus rating of Hold and an average price target of $46.20.

AutoNation (AN) traded up 1.63% on Monday, hitting $41.04. 1,250,747 shares of the stock traded hands. The stock has a market cap of $4.12 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 10.22 and a beta of 1.24. AutoNation has a 52 week low of $38.20 and a 52 week high of $53.74. The firm’s 50 day moving average is $41.48 and its 200 day moving average is $42.96.

AutoNation (NYSE:AN) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, August 2nd. The company reported $0.86 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.98 by $0.12. The company had revenue of $5.28 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $5.56 billion. AutoNation had a net margin of 1.90% and a return on equity of 16.71%. AutoNation’s revenue for the quarter was down 3.0% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the previous year, the company earned $1.08 earnings per share. Equities analysts anticipate that AutoNation will post $3.59 earnings per share for the current year.

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In other AutoNation news, Director Robert R. Grusky sold 2,800 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, August 4th. The shares were sold at an average price of $38.99, for a total value of $109,172.00. Following the transaction, the director now directly owns 30,713 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $1,197,499.87. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available through this link. 3.10% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

A number of institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. Vanguard Group Inc. raised its position in AutoNation by 2.2% in the second quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 6,785,538 shares of the company’s stock valued at $286,078,000 after buying an additional 147,424 shares in the last quarter. Artisan Partners Limited Partnership raised its position in AutoNation by 76.5% in the second quarter. Artisan Partners Limited Partnership now owns 5,181,954 shares of the company’s stock valued at $218,471,000 after buying an additional 2,245,935 shares in the last quarter. Harris Associates L P increased its stake in AutoNation by 324.0% in the first quarter. Harris Associates L P now owns 5,038,530 shares of the company’s stock worth $213,079,000 after buying an additional 3,850,104 shares during the last quarter. BlackRock Inc. increased its stake in AutoNation by 0.4% in the second quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 4,192,696 shares of the company’s stock worth $176,762,000 after buying an additional 17,314 shares during the last quarter. Finally, State Street Corp increased its stake in AutoNation by 2.5% in the first quarter. State Street Corp now owns 3,279,144 shares of the company’s stock worth $138,665,000 after buying an additional 79,834 shares during the last quarter. 65.97% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

About AutoNation

AutoNation, Inc (AutoNation) is an automotive retailer in the United States. The Company offers a range of automotive products and services, including new vehicles, used vehicles, parts and service, which includes automotive repair and maintenance services, as well as wholesale parts and collision businesses, and automotive finance and insurance products, including vehicle service and other protection products, as well as the arranging of financing for vehicle purchases through third-party finance sources.

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