Analysts expect that Group 1 Automotive, Inc. (NYSE:GPI) will announce sales of $2.98 billion for the current fiscal quarter, Zacks Investment Research reports. Two analysts have made estimates for Group 1 Automotive’s earnings. The lowest sales estimate is $2.94 billion and the highest is $3.01 billion. Group 1 Automotive reported sales of $2.94 billion during the same quarter last year, which would suggest a positive year-over-year growth rate of 1.4%. The firm is expected to report its next quarterly earnings results on Thursday, July 25th.

According to Zacks, analysts expect that Group 1 Automotive will report full year sales of $11.55 billion for the current year, with estimates ranging from $11.35 billion to $11.77 billion. For the next fiscal year, analysts forecast that the firm will report sales of $11.59 billion, with estimates ranging from $11.17 billion to $11.98 billion. Zacks’ sales calculations are an average based on a survey of sell-side research firms that follow Group 1 Automotive.

Group 1 Automotive (NYSE:GPI) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, April 25th. The company reported $2.06 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.81 by $0.25. Group 1 Automotive had a return on equity of 15.56% and a net margin of 1.38%. The firm had revenue of $2.81 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $2.86 billion. During the same period last year, the company earned $1.70 EPS. Group 1 Automotive’s quarterly revenue was down 1.8% compared to the same quarter last year.

A number of equities research analysts have weighed in on the company. Zacks Investment Research raised Group 1 Automotive from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $78.00 target price for the company in a research report on Tuesday, April 16th. ValuEngine raised Group 1 Automotive from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Thursday, April 4th. Morgan Stanley lifted their target price on Group 1 Automotive from $55.00 to $67.00 and gave the company an “equal weight” rating in a research report on Tuesday, April 16th. TheStreet raised Group 1 Automotive from a “c+” rating to a “b-” rating in a research report on Thursday, January 31st. Finally, JPMorgan Chase & Co. assumed coverage on Group 1 Automotive in a research report on Tuesday, February 19th. They set an “overweight” rating and a $77.00 target price for the company. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and six have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock currently has an average rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $84.00.

Shares of GPI stock traded down $1.62 on Friday, reaching $75.75. 1,969 shares of the company’s stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 159,880. Group 1 Automotive has a 52 week low of $48.69 and a 52 week high of $81.65. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.30, a quick ratio of 0.23 and a current ratio of 1.00. The firm has a market capitalization of $1.40 billion, a P/E ratio of 8.48, a P/E/G ratio of 1.88 and a beta of 1.86.

Group 1 Automotive declared that its Board of Directors has initiated a share buyback plan on Thursday, February 21st that authorizes the company to repurchase $75.00 million in outstanding shares. This repurchase authorization authorizes the company to repurchase up to 6.5% of its stock through open market purchases. Stock repurchase plans are generally a sign that the company’s management believes its stock is undervalued.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, June 17th. Stockholders of record on Monday, June 3rd will be issued a $0.26 dividend. The ex-dividend date is Friday, May 31st. This represents a $1.04 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 1.37%. Group 1 Automotive’s dividend payout ratio is presently 11.67%.

In other news, insider Michael David Jones sold 2,500 shares of Group 1 Automotive stock in a transaction on Monday, April 29th. The stock was sold at an average price of $77.76, for a total value of $194,400.00. Following the transaction, the insider now directly owns 13,921 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,082,496.96. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this hyperlink. Company insiders own 6.00% of the company’s stock.

Hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in the stock. Eminence Capital LP grew its stake in Group 1 Automotive by 1.1% during the 1st quarter. Eminence Capital LP now owns 1,129,691 shares of the company’s stock valued at $73,091,000 after purchasing an additional 11,811 shares during the last quarter. LSV Asset Management grew its stake in Group 1 Automotive by 0.4% during the 1st quarter. LSV Asset Management now owns 887,894 shares of the company’s stock valued at $57,446,000 after purchasing an additional 3,900 shares during the last quarter. Towle & Co. grew its stake in Group 1 Automotive by 48.3% during the 4th quarter. Towle & Co. now owns 591,517 shares of the company’s stock valued at $31,185,000 after purchasing an additional 192,628 shares during the last quarter. Morgan Stanley grew its stake in Group 1 Automotive by 65.0% during the 1st quarter. Morgan Stanley now owns 524,420 shares of the company’s stock valued at $33,930,000 after purchasing an additional 206,540 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Bank of New York Mellon Corp grew its stake in Group 1 Automotive by 6.8% during the 4th quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp now owns 421,274 shares of the company’s stock valued at $22,209,000 after purchasing an additional 26,898 shares during the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 99.96% of the company’s stock.

Group 1 Automotive Company Profile

Group 1 Automotive, Inc, through its subsidiaries, operates in the automotive retail industry. The company sells new and used cars, light trucks, and vehicle parts, as well as service insurance contracts; arranges related vehicle financing; and offers automotive maintenance and repair services. It has operations primarily in the metropolitan areas in Alabama, California, Florida, Georgia, Kansas, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Mississippi, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, Oklahoma, South Carolina, and Texas in the United States; 32 towns in the United Kingdom; and metropolitan markets in the states of Sao Paulo, Parana, Mato Grosso do Sul, and Santa Catarina, Brazil.

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Earnings History and Estimates for Group 1 Automotive (NYSE:GPI)

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