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Auto Stock Roundup: U.S. Sales Decline, Tesla's Loss Wider, Penske Automotive & Honda Beat

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The reporting cycle is nearing its end and the majority of auto companies have already reported results for the quarter ended Jun 30, 2017. Amid the earnings flurry, July U.S. auto sales data have come to the fore, indicating persistence of slump in the auto sector.

Per Autodata report, annualized pace of light-vehicle sales, adjusted for seasonal trends, slowed to 16.7 million in July from 17.8 million a year ago. With high levels of inventory, auto majors such as General Motors Company (GM - Free Report) and Ford Motor Co. (F - Free Report) have plans of producing fewer vehicles in the second half of the year.

Switching consumer preference toward SUV models and competition with Japanese and luxury brands offering more SUV models, have prompted U.S. automakers to re-strategize. Buyers can now expect better deals on small and mid-size cars, as automakers try to clear out excess inventory amid declining sales.

Moreover, consumers will eventually have fewer options for passenger cars, as automakers are shifting their engineering resources into SUVs, crossovers and pickups.

(Read the previous roundup here: Auto Stock Roundup for Jul 27, 2017)

Recap of the Week’s Most Important Stories

1.    U.S. auto sales declined for the fifth straight month in July. Per a Reuters report, pace of car and light truck sales in the month declined year over year owing to fewer fleet sales.

U.S. sales of new cars and trucks declined 7% to 1.4 million in July, according to Autodata Corp. It was the seventh straight month of lower sales, and the biggest percentage drop so far this year.

General Motors reported a 15.4% decrease in July sales. Ford also reported weaker-than-expected July sales.

2.    Penske Automotive Group Inc. (PAG - Free Report) recorded adjusted earnings of $1.27 per share in the second quarter of 2017, surpassing the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $1.20.

Net income increased 12.5% to $106.9 million in the quarter from $95 million a year ago.

Revenues rose 2.5% year over year to $5.38 billion, beating the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $5.33 billion. Excluding foreign exchange, revenues increased 6.6%, driven by 4.2% rise in total retail automotive sales to 130,127 units. Same-store retail revenues declined 5.6% to 112,796 units.

Gross profit inched up 1.9% to $817.3 million from $771.3 million in second-quarter 2016. Operating income grew 4.8% to $172 million from $164.1 million in the year-ago quarter (read more: Penske Automotive Q2 Earnings & Revenue Beat Estimates).

Currently, Penske Automotive has a Zacks Rank # 3 (Hold). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

3.    Honda Motor Co., Ltd. (HMC - Free Report) reported consolidated income of ¥207.3 billion ($1.85 billion) or ¥115.04 per share ($1.03 per ADR) in the first quarter of fiscal 2018 (ended Jun 30). Earnings per share surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 83 cents. Earnings per share increased ¥18.11 (16 cents per ADR) from the year-ago quarter figure.

Consolidated sales revenues increased 7% year over year to ¥3.71 trillion ($33.15 billion). The figure surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $31.30 billion. The year-over-year increase can be attributed to higher revenues in financial services, motorcycle business operations and foreign currency conversion effects.

Consolidated operating profit amounted to ¥269.2 billion ($2.40 billion), reflecting an increase of 0.9% from that of prior-year quarter. The improvement was backed by a rise in sale volume and model mix, and continuous lowering down of costs. These factors were offset by higher selling, general and administrative (SG&A) expenses (read more: Honda Drives Past Q1 Earnings and Revenue Estimates).

Currently, Honda has a Zacks Rank # 3.

4.    Toyota Motor North America Inc. of Toyota Motor Corporation (TM - Free Report) reported Jul 2017 sales of 222,057 units. With one less selling day in Jul 2017 compared with Jul 2016, sales increased 3.6% and were up 7.8% on a daily selling rate (DSR) basis.

In July, RAV4 sales were more than 40,000 units, the highest in a single month. Lexus utility vehicles had a stellar month with July sales of 28,902 units, up 3.6% on a volume basis.

Currently, Toyota has a Zacks Rank # 3.

5.    Tesla, Inc.’s (TSLA - Free Report) adjusted loss was $2.04 per share in the second quarter of 2017, compared with an adjusted loss of $1.54 in the year-ago quarter. Moreover, the loss was wider than the Zacks Consensus Estimate of a loss of $2.00.

The reported net loss in the quarter was $401.4 million compared with the year-ago loss of $293.2 million.

Revenues increased almost 200% to $2.79 billion from $1.27 billion registered in second-quarter 2016. The figure also surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $2.55 billion.

Tesla delivered 47,077 vehicles in the first half of 2017. In the second-quarter of 2017, the combined sales of Model S and Model X grew 52% from the year-ago figure (read more: Tesla Q2 Loss Wider Than Expected, Revenues Beat).

Currently, Tesla has a Zacks Rank # 3.

Performance

Among these stocks, Tesla registered the maximum decline in the last one week, whereas Advance Auto Parts, Inc. (AAP - Free Report) registered the maximum increase.

In the last six months, Tesla and Toyota are the two stocks whose prices have risen, while Advance Auto Parts registered the steepest decline.

Company

Last Week

Last 6 Months

GM

-2.2%

-5.5%

F

0.5%

-12.2%

TSLA

-5.2%

26.4%

TM

3.1%

0.8%

HMC

4.5%

-6.5%

HOG

-1.7%

-15.6%

AAP

7.3%

-28.5%

AZO

5.2%

-24.7%

 What’s Next in the Auto Space?

The earnings season for the quarter ending on Jun 30, 2017 is still underway. Big auto companies slated to report their earnings in the next few days include Toyota and Advance Auto Parts.

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