Principal Financial Group Inc. trimmed its holdings in shares of Sonic Automotive Inc (NYSE:SAH) by 5.4% during the third quarter, according to the company in its most recent Form 13F filing with the SEC. The firm owned 189,643 shares of the company’s stock after selling 10,927 shares during the quarter. Principal Financial Group Inc. owned about 0.43% of Sonic Automotive worth $3,869,000 as of its most recent filing with the SEC.

A number of other large investors have also added to or reduced their stakes in SAH. Teachers Advisors LLC increased its position in Sonic Automotive by 4.3% during the first quarter. Teachers Advisors LLC now owns 85,810 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,720,000 after acquiring an additional 3,501 shares during the period. Geode Capital Management LLC increased its position in Sonic Automotive by 2.3% during the first quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC now owns 210,753 shares of the company’s stock worth $4,225,000 after acquiring an additional 4,721 shares during the period. State Street Corp increased its position in Sonic Automotive by 8.2% during the first quarter. State Street Corp now owns 823,177 shares of the company’s stock worth $16,501,000 after acquiring an additional 62,209 shares during the period. Capstone Asset Management Co. increased its position in Sonic Automotive by 1.4% during the second quarter. Capstone Asset Management Co. now owns 16,133 shares of the company’s stock worth $314,000 after acquiring an additional 230 shares during the period. Finally, State of Alaska Department of Revenue increased its position in Sonic Automotive by 78.3% during the second quarter. State of Alaska Department of Revenue now owns 5,153 shares of the company’s stock worth $100,000 after acquiring an additional 2,263 shares during the period. 64.43% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

In other news, EVP Jeff Dyke sold 8,551 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, October 31st. The shares were sold at an average price of $20.10, for a total value of $171,875.10. Following the sale, the executive vice president now directly owns 1,262,056 shares in the company, valued at approximately $25,367,325.60. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available at the SEC website. Also, CFO Heath Byrd sold 11,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, October 27th. The shares were sold at an average price of $20.43, for a total transaction of $224,730.00. Following the completion of the sale, the chief financial officer now owns 143,306 shares in the company, valued at $2,927,741.58. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Company insiders own 30.29% of the company’s stock.

Shares of Sonic Automotive Inc (NYSE SAH) traded up $0.20 during trading on Monday, reaching $21.60. 162,800 shares of the company’s stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 267,053. The firm has a market capitalization of $933.02, a P/E ratio of 12.78, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 3.95 and a beta of 1.56. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.41, a current ratio of 1.06 and a quick ratio of 0.26. Sonic Automotive Inc has a 12-month low of $15.95 and a 12-month high of $27.45.

Sonic Automotive (NYSE:SAH) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, October 24th. The company reported $0.40 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, hitting analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.40. The firm had revenue of $2.51 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $2.54 billion. Sonic Automotive had a net margin of 0.70% and a return on equity of 10.47%. The business’s revenue for the quarter was down 2.0% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the prior year, the company posted $0.47 earnings per share. research analysts forecast that Sonic Automotive Inc will post 1.82 earnings per share for the current year.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, January 12th. Stockholders of record on Friday, December 15th will be paid a $0.05 dividend. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, December 14th. This represents a $0.20 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 0.93%. Sonic Automotive’s payout ratio is currently 12.82%.

SAH has been the topic of a number of analyst reports. KeyCorp reiterated a “hold” rating on shares of Sonic Automotive in a research note on Friday, September 1st. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Sonic Automotive from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Tuesday, October 17th. Bank of America downgraded shares of Sonic Automotive from a “neutral” rating to an “underperform” rating in a research note on Thursday, October 19th. TheStreet upgraded shares of Sonic Automotive from a “c+” rating to a “b” rating in a research note on Wednesday, October 18th. Finally, ValuEngine downgraded shares of Sonic Automotive from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Friday, November 10th. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, four have issued a hold rating and two have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The stock presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $23.67.

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About Sonic Automotive

Sonic Automotive, Inc is an automotive retailer in the United States. The Company’s operating segments include Franchised Dealerships and EchoPark. Its Franchised Dealerships segment consists of retail automotive franchises that sell new vehicles and buy and sell used vehicles, sell replacement parts, perform vehicle repair and maintenance services, and arrange finance and insurance products.

Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Sonic Automotive (NYSE:SAH)

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