Zacks Investment Research Downgrades Avis Budget Group (CAR) to Sell

Zacks Investment Research cut shares of Avis Budget Group (NASDAQ:CAR) from a hold rating to a sell rating in a report published on Friday.

According to Zacks, “Avis Budget continues to face hurdles like high fleet costs and intense competition from rival players in the vehicle rental industry. Disruption and termination of relationships with third-party distribution channels can cause reduction in transaction volume which may have an adverse impact on its financial condition as well as its operational results. Despite such headwinds, shares of Avis Budget outperformed the industry it belongs to in the past year. We appreciate Avis Budget’s focus on expanding its global presence by increasing the number of company-operated locations in fast-growing markets. The company operates through distinct global brands that focus on different market segments and complement other brands in their respective regional markets. We believe the company's fleet expansion and technology enhancement initiatives are likely to enhance its future prospects.”

A number of other analysts also recently commented on the stock. BidaskClub downgraded shares of Avis Budget Group from a buy rating to a hold rating in a report on Wednesday, August 29th. ValuEngine downgraded shares of Avis Budget Group from a sell rating to a strong sell rating in a report on Thursday, August 30th. Northcoast Research upgraded shares of Avis Budget Group from a neutral rating to a buy rating and set a $46.00 price objective for the company in a report on Monday, July 30th. Deutsche Bank set a $45.00 price target on shares of Avis Budget Group and gave the stock a buy rating in a report on Thursday. Finally, Goldman Sachs Group set a $30.00 price target on shares of Avis Budget Group and gave the stock a sell rating in a report on Tuesday, October 16th. Four analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, one has assigned a hold rating and three have given a buy rating to the stock. The stock has an average rating of Hold and an average target price of $41.00.

CAR stock traded down $0.95 during mid-day trading on Friday, reaching $27.90. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 1,529,208 shares, compared to its average volume of 1,542,871. The company has a market cap of $2.28 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 9.79 and a beta of 1.89. The company has a current ratio of 1.20, a quick ratio of 1.20 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 41.18. Avis Budget Group has a fifty-two week low of $27.30 and a fifty-two week high of $50.88.

Avis Budget Group (NASDAQ:CAR) last released its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, August 7th. The business services provider reported $0.57 EPS for the quarter, meeting the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.57. The company had revenue of $2.33 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $2.39 billion. Avis Budget Group had a net margin of 4.46% and a return on equity of 63.08%. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm earned $0.30 EPS. As a group, equities analysts forecast that Avis Budget Group will post 3.47 earnings per share for the current year.

In other Avis Budget Group news, Director Leonard S. Coleman, Jr. sold 13,000 shares of Avis Budget Group stock in a transaction on Friday, August 17th. The shares were sold at an average price of $34.63, for a total value of $450,190.00. Following the transaction, the director now directly owns 2,339 shares in the company, valued at $80,999.57. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available at the SEC website. 2.80% of the stock is owned by insiders.

A number of hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in CAR. Cerebellum GP LLC purchased a new position in shares of Avis Budget Group during the second quarter valued at approximately $142,000. Sei Investments Co. increased its position in Avis Budget Group by 12,509.1% during the first quarter. Sei Investments Co. now owns 4,161 shares of the business services provider’s stock worth $195,000 after purchasing an additional 4,128 shares during the last quarter. Cornerstone Wealth Management LLC acquired a new position in Avis Budget Group during the second quarter worth approximately $224,000. Stifel Financial Corp acquired a new position in Avis Budget Group during the first quarter worth approximately $240,000. Finally, NumerixS Investment Technologies Inc increased its position in shares of Avis Budget Group by 164.1% in the second quarter. NumerixS Investment Technologies Inc now owns 10,300 shares of the business services provider’s stock worth $331,000 after acquiring an additional 6,400 shares in the last quarter.

Avis Budget Group Company Profile

Avis Budget Group, Inc, together with its subsidiaries, provides car and truck rentals, car sharing, and ancillary services to businesses and consumers worldwide. It operates the Avis brand, a vehicle rental system with approximately 5,450 locations that supply rental cars to the premium commercial and leisure segments of the travel industry; the Budget brand, a vehicle rental and other mobility solutions primarily focuses on the value-conscious segments of the industry; the Zipcar brand, a membership-based car sharing network; and the Budget Truck brand, a local and one-way truck rental businesses with a fleet of approximately 19,000 vehicles, which are rented through a network of approximately 925 dealer-operated and 450 company-operated locations that serve the consumer and light commercial sectors in the continental United States.

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