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2011 was a year of records for Rush Enterprises, Inc. (RUSHA - Snapshot Report). It saw record revenue and triple digit earnings growth in 2011. Yet this Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) is also a value, as it trades with a forward P/E of just 10.8.
Rush Enterprises operates commercial vehicle dealerships in 14 southern and western states. The company represents truck and bus makers Peterbilt, International, Hino, Isuzu, Ford, UD, Blue Bird and IC Bus, among others.
Founded in 1965, its dealerships handle new and used sales, aftermarket parts, service and body shop operations as well as financial services through financing, insurance, leasing and rental arrangements.
A Record 2011
On Feb 14, Rush reported its fourth quarter and full year results. It blew by the Zacks Consensus Estimate by 25%. Earnings per share were 50 cents compared to the consensus of 40 cents. This easily surpassed the 24 cents in the year ago period.
Revenue jumped 67.6% in the fourth quarter to $776.1 million from $463 million in the fourth quarter of 2010. For the year, revenue soared 72% to a record $2.6 billion from $1.5 billion in 2010.
Aftermarket services remained hot. The parts, service and body shop revenue rose 38% for the year to $675.3 million from $489.3 million in 2010. Rush saw a 81.2% increase in new and used commercial vehicle sales. Rush sold 20,189 compared to 11,141 in 2010.
The fourth quarter saw a record quarterly absorption rate of 117% and an annual absorption rate of 114% for the year. That was the highest ever.
The company expects parts, service and body shop revenue to remain strong throughout 2012.
The 2012 Zacks Consensus Estimate Rises Ahead of Q1 Earnings
In the last 90 days, the 2012 Zacks Consensus Estimate has risen to $1.83 from $1.75 per share. 2 estimates have moved higher in just the last 30 days.
This is another year of solid earnings growth of 29.1% as Rush grew earnings by 122% in 2011.
Rush is scheduled to report earnings on Apr 25, so we'll get a much better idea then how 2012 is shaping up.
Still Plenty of Value
Shares have recently come down off their 2012 peak, opening the door for value investors.
In addition to a P/E under 11, Rush has a price-to-book ratio of just 1.4. A P/B ratio under 3.0 can mean a stock is a "value."
The company also has a dirt cheap P/S ratio of only 0.3. A P/S ratio under 1.0 usually indicates a company is undervalued.
Rush also has other solid metrics, including a 1-year return on equity (ROE) of 11%.
Rush Enterprises might be overlooked by many investors since it is a small cap, with a market cap of $768 million. But for value investors looking for both growth and strong value credentials, Rush certainly fits the bill.
Tracey Ryniec is the Value Stock Strategist for Zacks.com. She is also the Editor of the Turnaround Trader and Insider Trader services. You can follow her on twitter at @TraceyRyniec.