Lithia Motors Inc Announces Quarterly Dividend of $0.30 (NYSE:LAD)

Lithia Motors Inc (NYSE:LAD) announced a quarterly dividend on Thursday, February 13th, Wall Street Journal reports. Shareholders of record on Friday, March 13th will be paid a dividend of 0.30 per share on Friday, March 27th. This represents a $1.20 annualized dividend and a yield of 0.92%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, March 12th.

Lithia Motors has increased its dividend by an average of 4.2% annually over the last three years and has raised its dividend annually for the last 9 consecutive years. Lithia Motors has a payout ratio of 9.3% indicating that its dividend is sufficiently covered by earnings. Equities research analysts expect Lithia Motors to earn $15.39 per share next year, which means the company should continue to be able to cover its $1.20 annual dividend with an expected future payout ratio of 7.8%.

Shares of NYSE LAD opened at $131.00 on Friday. The stock’s 50 day moving average price is $140.75 and its two-hundred day moving average price is $141.62. Lithia Motors has a 52-week low of $84.58 and a 52-week high of $165.26. The stock has a market capitalization of $3.04 billion, a P/E ratio of 11.31, a PEG ratio of 1.09 and a beta of 1.14. The company has a quick ratio of 0.22, a current ratio of 1.20 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.97.

Lithia Motors (NYSE:LAD) last posted its earnings results on Wednesday, February 12th. The company reported $2.95 EPS for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $2.97 by ($0.02). The company had revenue of $3.30 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $3.22 billion. Lithia Motors had a net margin of 2.14% and a return on equity of 20.56%. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was up 11.0% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period last year, the company posted $2.54 earnings per share. On average, analysts anticipate that Lithia Motors will post 13.51 EPS for the current year.

Several research firms have recently commented on LAD. JPMorgan Chase & Co. upped their target price on Lithia Motors from $155.00 to $175.00 and gave the company an “overweight” rating in a report on Wednesday, December 18th. Guggenheim upped their target price on Lithia Motors from $147.00 to $171.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Thursday, October 24th. Benchmark began coverage on Lithia Motors in a report on Thursday, January 9th. They set a “buy” rating and a $185.00 target price for the company. Craig Hallum lowered their target price on Lithia Motors from $200.00 to $170.00 and set a “buy” rating for the company in a report on Thursday. Finally, ValuEngine lowered Lithia Motors from a “sell” rating to a “strong sell” rating in a report on Thursday, January 16th. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, two have assigned a hold rating and seven have assigned a buy rating to the stock. Lithia Motors presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $150.67.

Lithia Motors Company Profile

Lithia Motors, Inc operates automotive franchises, and retails new and used vehicles in the United States. The company operates in three segments: Domestic, Import, and Luxury. It sells new and used cars, replacement parts, vehicle service contracts, vehicle protection products, and credit insurance products; provides vehicle maintenance, warranty, paint, and repair services; and arranges related financing.

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Dividend History for Lithia Motors (NYSE:LAD)

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