KAR Auction Services Inc. (NYSE:KAR) shares saw strong trading volume on Thursday . 1,014,616 shares traded hands during trading, a decline of 14% from the previous session’s volume of 1,173,237 shares.The stock last traded at $42.22 and had previously closed at $42.62.

A number of equities analysts have issued reports on KAR shares. Northcoast Research downgraded KAR Auction Services from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating in a research report on Thursday. Zacks Investment Research raised KAR Auction Services from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $46.00 price target for the company in a report on Wednesday, July 6th. Sterne Agee CRT reaffirmed a “buy” rating and issued a $45.00 price target on shares of KAR Auction Services in a report on Friday, May 20th. Jefferies Group reaffirmed a “buy” rating and issued a $47.00 price target (up previously from $45.00) on shares of KAR Auction Services in a report on Thursday, May 5th. Finally, JPMorgan Chase & Co. reaffirmed a “buy” rating on shares of KAR Auction Services in a report on Wednesday, May 4th. Two analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and four have assigned a buy rating to the company. KAR Auction Services currently has an average rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $42.17.

The company has a market capitalization of $5.81 billion and a PE ratio of 26.94. The stock’s 50-day moving average price is $41.01 and its 200-day moving average price is $37.67.

KAR Auction Services (NYSE:KAR) last released its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, May 3rd. The company reported $0.55 EPS for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.50 by $0.05. The firm had revenue of $745 million for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $695.79 million. The company’s quarterly revenue was up 17.8% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the previous year, the company earned $0.47 earnings per share. Equities research analysts anticipate that KAR Auction Services Inc. will post $2.15 EPS for the current year.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Tuesday, July 5th. Stockholders of record on Wednesday, June 22nd were issued a dividend of $0.29 per share. The ex-dividend date was Monday, June 20th. This represents a $1.16 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 2.74%.

In related news, insider Thomas J. Caruso sold 48,860 shares of the stock in a transaction on Wednesday, June 29th. The stock was sold at an average price of $41.14, for a total value of $2,010,100.40. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now directly owns 13,585 shares in the company, valued at approximately $558,886.90. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, CEO Hilaire Stephane St. sold 59,355 shares of the stock in a transaction on Tuesday, May 10th. The shares were sold at an average price of $39.52, for a total value of $2,345,709.60. Following the completion of the sale, the chief executive officer now owns 5,000 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $197,600. The disclosure for this sale can be found here.

Other institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of the company. Victory Capital Management Inc. boosted its position in KAR Auction Services by 2.4% in the fourth quarter. Victory Capital Management Inc. now owns 27,216 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,008,000 after buying an additional 641 shares during the last quarter. Rhumbline Advisers boosted its position in shares of KAR Auction Services by 0.9% in the fourth quarter. Rhumbline Advisers now owns 114,971 shares of the company’s stock valued at $4,257,000 after buying an additional 995 shares during the last quarter. Suntrust Banks Inc. boosted its position in shares of KAR Auction Services by 8.1% in the fourth quarter. Suntrust Banks Inc. now owns 34,119 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,263,000 after buying an additional 2,556 shares during the last quarter. MUFG Americas boosted its position in shares of KAR Auction Services by 5.3% in the third quarter. MUFG Americas now owns 55,743 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,994,000 after buying an additional 2,810 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Dimensional Fund Advisors LP boosted its position in shares of KAR Auction Services by 1.4% in the fourth quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 1,666,592 shares of the company’s stock valued at $61,716,000 after buying an additional 22,281 shares during the last quarter.

KAR Auction Services, Inc is a provider of vehicle auction services in North America. We operate as three reportable business segments: ADESA, Inc (ADESA Auctions), Insurance Auto Auctions, Inc (IAA) and Automotive Finance Corporation (AFC). ADESA Auctions is a provider of whole car auctions and related services to the vehicle remarketing industry in North America.

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