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AutoNation (AN) Gains But Lags Market: What You Should Know

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In the latest trading session, AutoNation (AN - Free Report) closed at $116.71, marking a +0.58% move from the previous day. This move lagged the S&P 500's daily gain of 0.75%.

Heading into today, shares of the auto retailer had lost 1.07% over the past month, outpacing the Retail-Wholesale sector's loss of 2.43% and lagging the S&P 500's loss of 0.05% in that time.

Investors will be hoping for strength from AN as it approaches its next earnings release, which is expected to be October 21, 2021. In that report, analysts expect AN to post earnings of $4.35 per share. This would mark year-over-year growth of 82.77%. Meanwhile, our latest consensus estimate is calling for revenue of $6.49 billion, up 20.15% from the prior-year quarter.

Looking at the full year, our Zacks Consensus Estimates suggest analysts are expecting earnings of $15.97 per share and revenue of $25.93 billion. These totals would mark changes of +124.3% and +27.19%, respectively, from last year.

Investors should also note any recent changes to analyst estimates for AN. These revisions typically reflect the latest short-term business trends, which can change frequently. As such, positive estimate revisions reflect analyst optimism about the company's business and profitability.

Research indicates that these estimate revisions are directly correlated with near-term share price momentum. We developed the Zacks Rank to capitalize on this phenomenon. Our system takes these estimate changes into account and delivers a clear, actionable rating model.

The Zacks Rank system ranges from #1 (Strong Buy) to #5 (Strong Sell). It has a remarkable, outside-audited track record of success, with #1 stocks delivering an average annual return of +25% since 1988. The Zacks Consensus EPS estimate has moved 7.63% higher within the past month. AN is currently sporting a Zacks Rank of #1 (Strong Buy).

Looking at its valuation, AN is holding a Forward P/E ratio of 7.27. For comparison, its industry has an average Forward P/E of 8.5, which means AN is trading at a discount to the group.

Investors should also note that AN has a PEG ratio of 0.38 right now. The PEG ratio is similar to the widely-used P/E ratio, but this metric also takes the company's expected earnings growth rate into account. The Automotive - Retail and Whole Sales industry currently had an average PEG ratio of 0.47 as of yesterday's close.

The Automotive - Retail and Whole Sales industry is part of the Retail-Wholesale sector. This industry currently has a Zacks Industry Rank of 13, which puts it in the top 6% 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.

Be sure to follow all of these stock-moving metrics, and many more, on

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