Morgan Stanley Boosts Group 1 Automotive (NYSE:GPI) Price Target to $128.00

Group 1 Automotive (NYSE:GPI) had its price target lifted by Morgan Stanley from $105.00 to $128.00 in a research report report published on Thursday morning, AnalystRatings.com reports. The brokerage currently has an overweight rating on the stock.

Other research analysts have also issued research reports about the company. Buckingham Research set a $102.00 price objective on Group 1 Automotive and gave the company a hold rating in a report on Friday, October 25th. ValuEngine lowered Group 1 Automotive from a hold rating to a sell rating in a report on Wednesday, October 2nd. Stephens set a $110.00 price objective on Group 1 Automotive and gave the company a buy rating in a report on Friday, October 25th. JPMorgan Chase & Co. set a $107.00 price objective on Group 1 Automotive and gave the company a buy rating in a report on Friday, October 25th. Finally, Zacks Investment Research raised Group 1 Automotive from a hold rating to a buy rating and set a $108.00 price objective on the stock in a report on Monday, October 28th. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, one has assigned a hold rating and six have issued a buy rating to the stock. The company presently has a consensus rating of Buy and an average price target of $105.33.

GPI stock traded down $0.46 during mid-day trading on Thursday, hitting $101.39. The stock had a trading volume of 90,290 shares, compared to its average volume of 177,225. The company has a current ratio of 1.00, a quick ratio of 0.25 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.27. Group 1 Automotive has a 1-year low of $48.69 and a 1-year high of $108.99. The company has a fifty day moving average of $94.31 and a 200 day moving average of $83.29. The stock has a market capitalization of $1.89 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 11.38, a PEG ratio of 1.63 and a beta of 1.77.

Group 1 Automotive (NYSE:GPI) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, October 24th. The company reported $3.02 EPS for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $2.72 by $0.30. The business had revenue of $3.12 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $2.95 billion. Group 1 Automotive had a return on equity of 16.48% and a net margin of 1.31%. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was up 7.9% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm posted $2.47 EPS. As a group, sell-side analysts expect that Group 1 Automotive will post 10.6 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

In other Group 1 Automotive news, CEO Earl J. Hesterberg sold 9,569 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, October 30th. The stock was sold at an average price of $102.14, for a total value of $977,377.66. Following the sale, the chief executive officer now owns 130,129 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $13,291,376.06. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through this link. Also, SVP Frank Grese sold 2,940 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, October 30th. The shares were sold at an average price of $102.70, for a total value of $301,938.00. Following the completion of the sale, the senior vice president now directly owns 32,472 shares in the company, valued at approximately $3,334,874.40. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last three months, insiders have sold 79,258 shares of company stock worth $7,750,084. 6.00% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

A number of institutional investors and hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the business. Vanguard Group Inc. grew its holdings in Group 1 Automotive by 1.2% in the 2nd quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 1,843,027 shares of the company’s stock valued at $150,925,000 after buying an additional 22,448 shares during the last quarter. Northern Trust Corp lifted its position in shares of Group 1 Automotive by 0.3% in the 2nd quarter. Northern Trust Corp now owns 798,011 shares of the company’s stock worth $65,349,000 after acquiring an additional 2,754 shares during the period. UBS Group AG lifted its position in shares of Group 1 Automotive by 0.7% in the 2nd quarter. UBS Group AG now owns 410,327 shares of the company’s stock worth $33,602,000 after acquiring an additional 2,701 shares during the period. Foundry Partners LLC lifted its position in shares of Group 1 Automotive by 11.8% in the 3rd quarter. Foundry Partners LLC now owns 196,355 shares of the company’s stock worth $18,126,000 after acquiring an additional 20,788 shares during the period. Finally, Invesco Ltd. lifted its position in shares of Group 1 Automotive by 78.6% in the 2nd quarter. Invesco Ltd. now owns 163,449 shares of the company’s stock worth $13,385,000 after acquiring an additional 71,908 shares during the period.

Group 1 Automotive Company Profile

Group 1 Automotive, Inc, through its subsidiaries, operates in the automotive retail industry. The company sells new and used cars, light trucks, and vehicle parts, as well as service insurance contracts; arranges related vehicle financing; and offers automotive maintenance and repair services. It has operations primarily in the metropolitan areas in Alabama, California, Florida, Georgia, Kansas, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Mississippi, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, Oklahoma, South Carolina, and Texas in the United States; 32 towns in the United Kingdom; and metropolitan markets in the states of Sao Paulo, Parana, Mato Grosso do Sul, and Santa Catarina, Brazil.

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