Lithia Motors Inc. (NYSE:LAD)’s share price gapped up before the market opened on Friday . The stock had previously closed at $72.96, but opened at $73.44. Lithia Motors shares last traded at $77.50, with a volume of 228,180 shares traded.

A number of equities analysts have recently weighed in on the company. KeyCorp reaffirmed an “overweight” rating and set a $122.00 target price on shares of Lithia Motors in a research report on Monday, April 25th. Jefferies Group assumed coverage on Lithia Motors in a research report on Monday, April 11th. They set a “buy” rating and a $105.00 target price on the stock. Finally, Zacks Investment Research lowered Lithia Motors from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Monday, April 25th. Three analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and five have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $118.43.

The company has a market capitalization of $1.97 billion and a price-to-earnings ratio of 11.12. The company’s 50 day moving average price is $76.04 and its 200-day moving average price is $83.90.

Lithia Motors (NYSE:LAD) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, April 21st. The company reported $1.55 EPS for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.54 by $0.01. The company earned $2 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $1.96 billion. During the same period last year, the firm earned $1.39 earnings per share. Lithia Motors’s revenue for the quarter was up 10.8% on a year-over-year basis. On average, equities research analysts anticipate that Lithia Motors Inc. will post $7.58 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

Other large investors have modified their holdings of the company. Burney Co. raised its stake in shares of Lithia Motors by 7.4% in the fourth quarter. Burney Co. now owns 51,206 shares of the company’s stock worth $5,516,000 after buying an additional 3,550 shares in the last quarter. Sei Investments Co. raised its stake in shares of Lithia Motors by 13.1% in the fourth quarter. Sei Investments Co. now owns 26,002 shares of the company’s stock worth $2,773,000 after buying an additional 3,010 shares in the last quarter. Rhumbline Advisers raised its stake in shares of Lithia Motors by 8.0% in the fourth quarter. Rhumbline Advisers now owns 32,527 shares of the company’s stock worth $3,470,000 after buying an additional 2,397 shares in the last quarter. Monarch Partners Asset Management LLC raised its stake in shares of Lithia Motors by 20.5% in the fourth quarter. Monarch Partners Asset Management LLC now owns 115,580 shares of the company’s stock worth $12,329,000 after buying an additional 19,641 shares in the last quarter. Finally, New York State Common Retirement Fund raised its stake in shares of Lithia Motors by 1.6% in the fourth quarter. New York State Common Retirement Fund now owns 80,774 shares of the company’s stock worth $8,616,000 after buying an additional 1,311 shares in the last quarter.

Lithia Motors, Inc is an operator of automotive franchises and a retailer of new and used vehicles and services. The Company operates in three segments: Domestic, Import and Luxury. The Domestic segment consists of retail automotive franchises that sell new vehicles of Chrysler, General Motors and Ford.

Get Analysts' Upgrades and Downgrades Daily - Enter your email address below to receive a concise daily summary of analysts' upgrades, downgrades and new coverage with MarketBeat.com's FREE daily email newsletter.