AutoZone, Inc. Forecasted to Earn Q1 2019 Earnings of $12.34 Per Share (AZO)

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AutoZone, Inc. (NYSE:AZO) – Stock analysts at Wedbush increased their Q1 2019 earnings estimates for shares of AutoZone in a research note issued on Tuesday, September 18th, according to Zacks Investment Research. Wedbush analyst S. Basham now expects that the company will post earnings of $12.34 per share for the quarter, up from their prior forecast of $12.15. Wedbush has a “Outperform” rating and a $770.00 price objective on the stock. Wedbush also issued estimates for AutoZone’s Q2 2019 earnings at $9.96 EPS, Q3 2019 earnings at $14.94 EPS, Q4 2019 earnings at $21.70 EPS, FY2019 earnings at $58.94 EPS, Q3 2020 earnings at $16.65 EPS, Q4 2020 earnings at $22.46 EPS and FY2020 earnings at $63.97 EPS.

AZO has been the subject of a number of other reports. Citigroup boosted their target price on AutoZone from $765.00 to $850.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Wednesday, September 19th. Royal Bank of Canada decreased their target price on AutoZone from $779.00 to $775.00 and set a “sector perform” rating for the company in a research report on Wednesday, September 19th. Stephens reaffirmed a “buy” rating and issued a $825.00 target price on shares of AutoZone in a research report on Wednesday, September 19th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. JPMorgan Chase & Co. boosted their target price on AutoZone to $880.00 and gave the company an “overweight” rating in a research report on Wednesday, September 19th. Finally, Bank of America lowered AutoZone from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating and set a $830.00 target price for the company. in a research report on Monday, September 17th. Nine analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, eleven have issued a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the stock. AutoZone has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $773.95.

Shares of NYSE:AZO traded up $5.95 during midday trading on Thursday, reaching $774.96. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 343,101 shares, compared to its average volume of 355,464. The company has a market capitalization of $20.51 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 15.39, a P/E/G ratio of 1.10 and a beta of 0.88. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of -3.29, a current ratio of 0.92 and a quick ratio of 0.14. AutoZone has a fifty-two week low of $560.82 and a fifty-two week high of $797.89.

AutoZone (NYSE:AZO) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, September 18th. The company reported $18.54 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $17.92 by $0.62. The company had revenue of $3.56 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $3.60 billion. AutoZone had a negative return on equity of 99.70% and a net margin of 11.92%. The firm’s revenue was up 1.3% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the previous year, the business earned $15.27 EPS.

AutoZone declared that its Board of Directors has authorized a share repurchase program on Wednesday, September 26th that allows the company to repurchase $1.25 billion in outstanding shares. This repurchase authorization allows the company to reacquire up to 6.1% of its stock through open market purchases. Stock repurchase programs are generally a sign that the company’s leadership believes its shares are undervalued.

In other AutoZone news, Chairman William C. Rhodes III sold 23,700 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, September 27th. The stock was sold at an average price of $780.06, for a total transaction of $18,487,422.00. Following the completion of the sale, the chairman now directly owns 37,918 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $29,578,315.08. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through the SEC website. Also, insider Albert Saltiel sold 2,150 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, August 2nd. The stock was sold at an average price of $717.90, for a total value of $1,543,485.00. Following the sale, the insider now directly owns 2,297 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $1,649,016.30. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold a total of 54,250 shares of company stock valued at $41,922,875 over the last three months. Corporate insiders own 2.80% of the company’s stock.

A number of institutional investors and hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of the business. BlackRock Inc. boosted its stake in shares of AutoZone by 3.1% in the 1st quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 1,907,100 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,237,117,000 after buying an additional 56,974 shares during the last quarter. JPMorgan Chase & Co. boosted its stake in shares of AutoZone by 10.2% in the 1st quarter. JPMorgan Chase & Co. now owns 1,792,694 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,162,902,000 after buying an additional 165,885 shares during the last quarter. Caisse DE Depot ET Placement DU Quebec boosted its stake in shares of AutoZone by 6.6% in the 2nd quarter. Caisse DE Depot ET Placement DU Quebec now owns 878,313 shares of the company’s stock worth $589,287,000 after buying an additional 54,350 shares during the last quarter. Burgundy Asset Management Ltd. boosted its stake in shares of AutoZone by 2.3% in the 2nd quarter. Burgundy Asset Management Ltd. now owns 615,202 shares of the company’s stock worth $412,757,000 after buying an additional 13,890 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Beutel Goodman & Co Ltd. boosted its stake in shares of AutoZone by 14.7% in the 2nd quarter. Beutel Goodman & Co Ltd. now owns 301,811 shares of the company’s stock worth $154,057,000 after buying an additional 38,720 shares during the last quarter. 91.62% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

AutoZone Company Profile

AutoZone, Inc retails and distributes automotive replacement parts and accessories. It offers various products for cars, sport utility vehicles, vans, and light trucks, including new and remanufactured automotive hard parts, maintenance items, accessories, and non-automotive products. The company's products include A/C compressors, batteries and accessories, bearings, belts and hoses, calipers, carburetors, chassis, clutches, CV axles, engines, fuel pumps, fuses, ignition and lighting products, mufflers, radiators, thermostats, starters and alternators, and water pumps.

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