Shares of KAR Auction Services Inc. (NYSE:KAR) have been given a consensus rating of “Buy” by the nine ratings firms that are covering the company. Three research analysts have rated the stock with a hold recommendation and five have given a buy recommendation to the company. The average 1-year price target among analysts that have updated their coverage on the stock in the last year is $43.40.

Several research analysts recently issued reports on the company. Zacks Investment Research raised KAR Auction Services from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Tuesday, November 22nd. Macquarie reissued an “outperform” rating on shares of KAR Auction Services in a research note on Monday, August 29th. Susquehanna began coverage on KAR Auction Services in a research report on Friday, August 26th. They set a “positive” rating and a $50.00 target price on the stock. Jefferies Group increased their target price on KAR Auction Services from $47.00 to $50.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Thursday, August 4th. Finally, JPMorgan Chase & Co. reaffirmed a “buy” rating on shares of KAR Auction Services in a research report on Wednesday, August 3rd.

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In related news, EVP Lisa A. Price sold 5,140 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Wednesday, October 5th. The stock was sold at an average price of $44.00, for a total value of $226,160.00. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through the SEC website. Also, EVP Benjamin Skuy sold 10,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Friday, September 2nd. The stock was sold at an average price of $42.74, for a total value of $427,400.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the executive vice president now owns 87,420 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $3,736,330.80. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders own 1.30% of the company’s stock.

A number of institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of the company. PNC Financial Services Group Inc. raised its position in shares of KAR Auction Services by 178.6% in the third quarter. PNC Financial Services Group Inc. now owns 2,385 shares of the company’s stock worth $104,000 after buying an additional 1,529 shares during the period. TLP Group LLC purchased a new position in shares of KAR Auction Services during the third quarter worth about $126,000. Bank of Montreal Can purchased a new position in shares of KAR Auction Services during the second quarter worth about $137,000. BlackRock Japan Co. Ltd raised its position in shares of KAR Auction Services by 85.7% in the second quarter. BlackRock Japan Co. Ltd now owns 3,636 shares of the company’s stock worth $152,000 after buying an additional 1,678 shares during the period. Finally, The Manufacturers Life Insurance Company purchased a new position in shares of KAR Auction Services during the third quarter worth about $167,000.

Shares of KAR Auction Services (NYSE:KAR) traded up 0.07% during mid-day trading on Tuesday, reaching $41.73. The company had a trading volume of 408,412 shares. KAR Auction Services has a 12-month low of $31.54 and a 12-month high of $44.10. The firm has a market capitalization of $5.77 billion, a PE ratio of 25.78 and a beta of 1.41. The stock has a 50 day moving average price of $41.66 and a 200 day moving average price of $41.66.

KAR Auction Services (NYSE:KAR) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, November 3rd. The company reported $0.50 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $0.53 by $0.03. KAR Auction Services had a return on equity of 19.45% and a net margin of 7.58%. The firm earned $773.80 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $770.84 million. During the same period last year, the company earned $0.47 EPS. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was up 16.1% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, equities analysts forecast that KAR Auction Services will post $2.08 earnings per share for the current year.

The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, January 6th. Stockholders of record on Wednesday, December 21st will be issued a dividend of $0.32 per share. This represents a $1.28 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 3.07%. The ex-dividend date is Monday, December 19th. This is a positive change from KAR Auction Services’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.29. KAR Auction Services’s dividend payout ratio is currently 71.60%.

About KAR Auction Services

KAR Auction Services, Inc is a provider of whole car auction services in North America, and salvage auction services in North America and the United Kingdom. The Company operates through three segments: ADESA, Inc (ADESA Auctions), Insurance Auto Auctions, Inc (IAA) and Automotive Finance Corporation (AFC).

5 Day Chart for NYSE:KAR

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