AutoNation, Inc. (NYSE:AN) Short Interest Down 9.6% in July

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AutoNation, Inc. (NYSE:AN) saw a significant decline in short interest in July. As of July 31st, there was short interest totalling 6,774,600 shares, a decline of 9.6% from the June 30th total of 7,494,700 shares. Currently, 8.7% of the company’s stock are short sold. Based on an average daily volume of 782,700 shares, the days-to-cover ratio is currently 8.7 days.

Several research analysts recently commented on the company. Morgan Stanley boosted their price target on AutoNation from $35.00 to $39.00 and gave the stock an “underweight” rating in a research note on Friday, August 2nd. TheStreet upgraded AutoNation from a “c+” rating to a “b” rating in a research note on Tuesday, July 23rd. ValuEngine cut AutoNation from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Thursday, August 1st. SunTrust Banks boosted their price target on AutoNation to $43.00 and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a research note on Tuesday, April 30th. Finally, Longbow Research reissued a “hold” rating on shares of AutoNation in a report on Sunday, July 7th. Four equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, five have assigned a hold rating and one has issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock currently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $41.38.

In related news, Chairman Michael J. Jackson sold 32,231 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, July 26th. The stock was sold at an average price of $48.22, for a total value of $1,554,178.82. Following the transaction, the chairman now owns 199,917 shares in the company, valued at $9,639,997.74. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, Chairman Michael J. Jackson sold 37,104 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, June 5th. The stock was sold at an average price of $41.93, for a total value of $1,555,770.72. Following the completion of the transaction, the chairman now owns 204,790 shares in the company, valued at approximately $8,586,844.70. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last 90 days, insiders have sold 1,670,911 shares of company stock worth $79,390,628. 2.40% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

Large investors have recently bought and sold shares of the company. Hi Line Capital Management LLC lifted its position in shares of AutoNation by 0.8% during the 2nd quarter. Hi Line Capital Management LLC now owns 110,513 shares of the company’s stock valued at $4,635,000 after acquiring an additional 837 shares during the last quarter. AlphaOne Investment Services LLC lifted its position in shares of AutoNation by 454.8% during the 2nd quarter. AlphaOne Investment Services LLC now owns 4,100 shares of the company’s stock valued at $172,000 after acquiring an additional 3,361 shares during the last quarter. Parametric Portfolio Associates LLC lifted its position in shares of AutoNation by 13.7% during the 2nd quarter. Parametric Portfolio Associates LLC now owns 214,924 shares of the company’s stock valued at $9,014,000 after acquiring an additional 25,929 shares during the last quarter. Natixis lifted its position in shares of AutoNation by 36.9% during the 2nd quarter. Natixis now owns 8,954 shares of the company’s stock valued at $376,000 after acquiring an additional 2,415 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Pacer Advisors Inc. acquired a new stake in shares of AutoNation during the 2nd quarter valued at $962,000. 63.95% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

Shares of AutoNation stock opened at $48.91 on Wednesday. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.65, a quick ratio of 0.20 and a current ratio of 0.83. The company has a market capitalization of $4.25 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 10.89, a P/E/G ratio of 3.84 and a beta of 1.06. AutoNation has a fifty-two week low of $32.83 and a fifty-two week high of $49.61. The company has a 50-day moving average price of $44.54.

AutoNation (NYSE:AN) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Monday, July 22nd. The company reported $1.20 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.08 by $0.12. The firm had revenue of $5.35 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $5.29 billion. AutoNation had a return on equity of 15.10% and a net margin of 1.89%. AutoNation’s quarterly revenue was down .8% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the previous year, the company earned $1.14 earnings per share. On average, equities analysts anticipate that AutoNation will post 4.44 EPS for the current year.

About AutoNation

AutoNation, Inc, through its subsidiaries, operates as an automotive retailer in the United States. The company operates through three segments: Domestic, Import, and Premium Luxury. It offers a range of automotive products and services, including new and used vehicles; and parts and services, such as automotive repair and maintenance, and wholesale parts and collision services.

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