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AutoNation (AN) Up 0.5% Since Last Earnings Report: Can It Continue?

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A month has gone by since the last earnings report for AutoNation (AN - Free Report) . Shares have added about 0.5% in that time frame, underperforming the S&P 500.

Will the recent positive trend continue leading up to its next earnings release, or is AutoNation due for a pullback? Before we dive into how investors and analysts have reacted as of late, let's take a quick look at the most recent earnings report in order to get a better handle on the important drivers.

AutoNation's Q2 Earnings Results Impress

AutoNation reported second-quarter 2021 adjusted earnings of $4.83 per share, surging 52% year over year and topping the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $2.85. The outperformance can be primarily attributed to higher-than-expected new and used vehicle sales. Operational efficiency also aided the bottom line. SG&A expenses as a percentage of gross profit were 56.5% for the quarter under review, marking a 1,170-basis point improvement from the corresponding period of 2020. For the reported quarter, revenues amounted to $6,978.4 million, up 54% year over year. Further, the top line comfortably surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $5,937 million.

Key Takeaways

For the quarter under review, new-vehicle revenues soared 51.6% year over year to $3,428.3 million and surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $3,171 million. Used-vehicle revenues also rose 67.8% from the year-ago figure to $2,222.9 million, handily beating the consensus mark of $1,723 million. Net revenues in the finance and insurance business amounted to $369 million, up from $246.4 million recorded in the year-ago quarter. Revenues from the parts and service business rose 37.8% from the prior-year quarter to $950.8 million.

AutoNation intends to build in excess of 130 stand-alone pre-owned vehicle stores by 2026-end. It is on track to open four new stores by 2021-end and 12 additional stores in 2022. 

Segmental Details

Revenues in the Domestic segment soared 43% year over year to $2,124.8 million. The segment’s income jumped 105.8% year over year to $169 million for the quarter under review. The segment comprises stores that sell vehicles manufactured by General Motors, Ford and FCA US.

Revenues in the Import segment grew 64.1% from the prior-year quarter to $2,175 million. The segment’s income also climbed 130.7% year over year to $203.7 million for the reported quarter. The segment consists of outlets that sell vehicles manufactured primarily by Toyota, Honda, Subaru, Hyundai and Nissan.

The Premium Luxury segment comprises stores that sell retail vehicles manufactured by Mercedes-Benz, BMW, Lexus, Jaguar Land Rover and Audi. Sales in the segment rose 57.8% from a year ago to $2,468.5 million. Segmental income also surged 153% year over year to $225.7 million for the reported quarter.

Financial Tidbits

AutoNation’s cash and cash equivalents were $59.5 million as of Jun 30, 2021. The company’s liquidity at year-end was $1.6 billion. The firm’s inventory was valued at $1,756.2 million. At first quarter-end, non-vehicle debt was $1,997.3 million. Capital expenditure for the quarter amounted to $74.3 million.

During the reported quarter, AutoNation bought back 7.5 million shares worth $736 million. The company increased the share-buyback authorization to $1 billion. The company now has $1.1 billion remaining under the current share-repurchase authorization and 71.6 million shares outstanding.

How Have Estimates Been Moving Since Then?

In the past month, investors have witnessed an upward trend in estimates review. The consensus estimate has shifted 50.48% due to these changes.

VGM Scores

At this time, AutoNation has a strong Growth Score of A, though it is lagging a lot on the Momentum Score front with a D. However, the stock was allocated a grade of A on the value side, putting it in the top quintile for this investment strategy.

Overall, the stock has an aggregate VGM Score of A. If you aren't focused on one strategy, this score is the one you should be interested in.


Estimates have been trending upward for the stock, and the magnitude of these revisions looks promising. It comes with little surprise AutoNation has a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy). We expect an above average return from the stock in the next few months.

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