Zacks Investment Research Upgrades AutoZone Inc. (AZO) to Buy
AutoZone Inc. (NYSE:AZO) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a report issued on Wednesday. The firm presently has a $889.00 price target on the stock. Zacks Investment Research’s price target would suggest a potential upside of 11.40% from the stock’s current price.
According to Zacks, “AutoZone is focused on increasing sales through store expansion and boosting earnings via aggressive share repurchases. Moreover, the rising average age of cars on U.S. roads is leading to higher demand for auto parts. AutoZone expects its capital and operating expenses to rise over the next three years due to its plans to open new distribution centers. The company is also increasing the frequency of deliveries to its stores. While AutoZone expects this strategy to be advantageous in the long term, its implementation is leading to gross margin headwinds due to higher supply chain costs. AutoZone’s estimates have been stable over the past 30 days. The company has a mostly positive record of earnings surprises in recent quarters.”
A number of other analysts have also issued reports on AZO. Credit Suisse Group AG set a $870.00 price target on AutoZone and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Saturday, September 17th. Wedbush reiterated an “outperform” rating and issued a $870.00 price target on shares of AutoZone in a report on Friday, September 23rd. TheStreet lowered AutoZone from a “buy” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Wednesday, September 28th. Royal Bank Of Canada lowered their price target on AutoZone from $873.00 to $855.00 and set a “sector perform” rating for the company in a report on Friday, September 23rd. Finally, Goldman Sachs Group Inc. boosted their price target on AutoZone from $841.00 to $874.00 and gave the company a “neutral” rating in a report on Friday, September 23rd. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, ten have assigned a hold rating, eleven have assigned a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. The company has an average rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $855.63.
Shares of AutoZone (NYSE:AZO) opened at 798.05 on Wednesday. The firm’s 50-day moving average price is $752.25 and its 200 day moving average price is $767.56. The stock has a market capitalization of $23.03 billion, a P/E ratio of 19.61 and a beta of 0.61. AutoZone has a 52 week low of $681.01 and a 52 week high of $819.54.
AutoZone (NYSE:AZO) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, September 22nd. The company reported $14.30 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $14.25 by $0.05. The firm earned $3.40 billion during the quarter. AutoZone had a negative return on equity of 69.23% and a net margin of 11.67%. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was up 3.3% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the previous year, the firm posted $12.75 EPS. Analysts expect that AutoZone will post $45.44 earnings per share for the current year.
Large investors have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. FMR LLC raised its stake in AutoZone by 0.3% in the second quarter. FMR LLC now owns 3,456,561 shares of the company’s stock valued at $2,743,956,000 after buying an additional 10,768 shares during the last quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. raised its stake in AutoZone by 0.4% in the second quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 1,813,090 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,439,303,000 after buying an additional 6,703 shares during the last quarter. Massachusetts Financial Services Co. MA raised its stake in AutoZone by 2.1% in the second quarter. Massachusetts Financial Services Co. MA now owns 1,713,596 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,360,321,000 after buying an additional 35,351 shares during the last quarter. Nordea Investment Management AB raised its stake in AutoZone by 2.7% in the third quarter. Nordea Investment Management AB now owns 777,387 shares of the company’s stock valued at $597,298,000 after buying an additional 20,265 shares during the last quarter. Finally, BlackRock Fund Advisors raised its stake in AutoZone by 1.1% in the third quarter. BlackRock Fund Advisors now owns 678,034 shares of the company’s stock valued at $520,961,000 after buying an additional 7,080 shares during the last quarter. 97.29% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.
AutoZone Company Profile
AutoZone, Inc is a retailer and distributor of automotive replacement parts and accessories in the United States. The Company’s operating segments include Auto Parts Locations and Other. The Auto Parts Locations segment comprises Domestic Auto Parts, Mexico, Brazil and Interamerican Motor Corporation (IMC).
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