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Shares of Advance Auto Parts Inc. (AAP - Analyst Report) hit a new 52-week high of $86.92 on May 16, which is above its previous level of $86.23, and closed at $85.42 on the same date. The closing price represented a one-year return of 4.4% and a solid year-to-date return of 17.9%.
    
The leading retailer of replacement parts (excluding tires), accessories, maintenance items, batteries and automotive fluids for cars and light trucks has a market cap of $6.4 billion. Average volume of shares traded over the last three months stood at approximately 852.26K.

Shares of the company started escalating in anticipation of an improved 2013-first quarter results, to be released on May 23 as most of the leading automotive aftermarket parts retailer, including AutoNation Inc. (AN - Analyst Report), CarMax Inc. (KMX - Analyst Report) and O’Reilly Automotive Inc. (ORLY - Analyst Report), have performed well during the quarter.

For 2013, Advance Auto Parts expects operating EPS between $5.45 and $5.60, which excludes one-time integration costs for BWP Distributors of roughly 15 to 20 cents per share. The expected EPS is higher than $5.22, reported in 2012. The company also expects revenues to increase roughly $170 million to $180 million during the year due to the acquisition of BWP. Shares of the company currently retain a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).

In the first quarter of 2013, AutoNation posted a 21.4% rise in earnings per share to 68 cents from 56 cents in the same quarter of 2012, topping the Zacks Consensus Estimate by 5 cents. Revenues increased 10.8% to $4.1 billion, nearly tallying the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $4.0 billion.

In the same quarter, O’Reilly Automotive posted a 19.3% increase in earnings to $1.36 per share compared with $1.14 in the year-ago quarter, exceeding the Zacks Consensus Estimate by a penny. Revenues during the quarter scaled up 4% to $1.59 billion from $1.53 billion in the same period a year ago.

Last month, CarMax posted a profit of $107.2 million or 46 cents per share in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2013 ended Feb 28, 2013, barely exceeding the Zacks Consensus Estimate by a penny. Profits increased 12.8% from $95.0 million or 12.2% from 41 cents per share in the prior-year quarter. Net sales and operating revenues in the quarter rose 14% to $2.83 billion, topping the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $2.70 billion. Currently, shares of CarMax retain a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).
 

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