Tower Research Capital LLC TRC grew its stake in shares of KAR Auction Services, Inc (NYSE:KAR) by 71.6% during the second quarter, according to the company in its most recent disclosure with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The fund owned 5,091 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock after buying an additional 2,125 shares during the period. Tower Research Capital LLC TRC’s holdings in KAR Auction Services were worth $214,000 as of its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

A number of other institutional investors and hedge funds also recently modified their holdings of KAR. BlackRock Inc. boosted its holdings in KAR Auction Services by 20,047.2% during the first quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 5,618,436 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock worth $245,357,000 after buying an additional 5,590,549 shares during the last quarter. Janus Henderson Group PLC bought a new position in KAR Auction Services during the second quarter worth about $69,833,000. Janus Capital Management LLC boosted its holdings in KAR Auction Services by 479.1% during the first quarter. Janus Capital Management LLC now owns 1,348,178 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock worth $58,875,000 after buying an additional 1,115,378 shares during the last quarter. Bessemer Group Inc. boosted its holdings in KAR Auction Services by 43.0% during the second quarter. Bessemer Group Inc. now owns 3,115,698 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock worth $130,767,000 after buying an additional 937,368 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Principal Financial Group Inc. boosted its holdings in KAR Auction Services by 18.6% during the second quarter. Principal Financial Group Inc. now owns 5,867,365 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock worth $246,255,000 after buying an additional 918,735 shares during the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 99.27% of the company’s stock.

KAR Auction Services, Inc (NYSE:KAR) traded down 0.46% during trading on Wednesday, hitting $47.64. The stock had a trading volume of 87,518 shares. KAR Auction Services, Inc has a one year low of $38.16 and a one year high of $48.65. The firm has a market capitalization of $6.54 billion, a P/E ratio of 29.23 and a beta of 1.07. The stock has a 50 day moving average of $46.03 and a 200 day moving average of $43.57.

KAR Auction Services (NYSE:KAR) last released its earnings results on Tuesday, August 8th. The specialty retailer reported $0.65 EPS for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $0.58 by $0.07. KAR Auction Services had a return on equity of 21.46% and a net margin of 6.83%. The business had revenue of $858.00 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $850.67 million. During the same quarter last year, the firm posted $0.55 earnings per share. The firm’s revenue was up 8.8% on a year-over-year basis. Equities research analysts expect that KAR Auction Services, Inc will post $2.25 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Tuesday, October 3rd. Investors of record on Wednesday, September 20th were paid a dividend of $0.32 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Tuesday, September 19th. This represents a $1.28 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.67%. KAR Auction Services’s dividend payout ratio is currently 78.53%.

A number of equities analysts have issued reports on the company. Zacks Investment Research upgraded KAR Auction Services from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $54.00 target price on the stock in a report on Tuesday. Jefferies Group LLC restated a “buy” rating and set a $50.00 target price on shares of KAR Auction Services in a report on Tuesday, September 12th. Stephens cut KAR Auction Services from an “overweight” rating to an “equal weight” rating and reduced their target price for the stock from $51.00 to $48.00 in a report on Thursday, September 7th. BidaskClub upgraded KAR Auction Services from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Monday, July 31st. Finally, Gabelli assumed coverage on KAR Auction Services in a report on Tuesday, July 4th. They set a “buy” rating and a $62.00 target price on the stock. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and four have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock has an average rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $53.50.

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In related news, CEO John W. Kett sold 10,011 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, August 1st. The stock was sold at an average price of $42.01, for a total transaction of $420,562.11. Following the completion of the sale, the chief executive officer now owns 65,982 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $2,771,903.82. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at the SEC website. Also, COO Donald S. Gottwald sold 10,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, August 15th. The stock was sold at an average price of $43.68, for a total value of $436,800.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold 20,031 shares of company stock valued at $858,249 in the last ninety days. 1.30% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

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 or ADESA), Insurance Auto Auctions, Inc (IAA) and Automotive Finance Corporation (AFC).

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for KAR Auction Services (NYSE:KAR)

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