In the latest trading session, Lithia Motors (LAD - Free Report) closed at $243.53, marking a -1.72% move from the previous day. This change was narrower than the S&P 500's 1.76% loss on the day. At the same time, the Dow lost 1.45%, and the tech-heavy Nasdaq lost 1.99%.
Prior to today's trading, shares of the auto dealership chain had lost 4.32% over the past month. This has lagged the Retail-Wholesale sector's gain of 4.1% and the S&P 500's gain of 1.56% in that time.
LAD will be looking to display strength as it nears its next earnings release. On that day, LAD is projected to report earnings of $4.05 per share, which would represent year-over-year growth of 19.47%. Meanwhile, our latest consensus estimate is calling for revenue of $3.48 billion, up 4.53% from the prior-year quarter.
Looking at the full year, our Zacks Consensus Estimates suggest analysts are expecting earnings of $13.82 per share and revenue of $12.53 billion. These totals would mark changes of +17.52% and -1.13%, respectively, from last year.
Investors might also notice recent changes to analyst estimates for LAD. Recent revisions tend to reflect the latest near-term business trends. As such, positive estimate revisions reflect analyst optimism about the company's business and profitability.
Our research shows that these estimate changes are directly correlated with near-term stock prices. Investors can capitalize on this by using the Zacks Rank. This model considers these estimate changes and provides a simple, actionable rating system.
The Zacks Rank system, which ranges from #1 (Strong Buy) to #5 (Strong Sell), has an impressive outside-audited track record of outperformance, with #1 stocks generating an average annual return of +25% since 1988. The Zacks Consensus EPS estimate has moved 5.9% higher within the past month. LAD is currently sporting a Zacks Rank of #1 (Strong Buy).
Investors should also note LAD's current valuation metrics, including its Forward P/E ratio of 17.93. Its industry sports an average Forward P/E of 12.48, so we one might conclude that LAD is trading at a premium comparatively.
The Automotive - Retail and Whole Sales industry is part of the Retail-Wholesale sector. This group has a Zacks Industry Rank of 1, putting it in the top 1% of all 250+ industries.
The Zacks Industry Rank gauges the strength of our industry groups by measuring the average Zacks Rank of the individual stocks within the groups. Our research shows that the top 50% rated industries outperform the bottom half by a factor of 2 to 1.
You can find more information on all of these metrics, and much more, on Zacks.com.