Public Employees Retirement System of Ohio boosted its stake in Lithia Motors, Inc. (NYSE:LAD) by 10.0% during the first quarter, Holdings Channel reports. The firm owned 1,602 shares of the company’s stock after buying an additional 146 shares during the period. Public Employees Retirement System of Ohio’s holdings in Lithia Motors were worth $137,000 as of its most recent filing with the SEC.

A number of other hedge funds and other institutional investors have also recently modified their holdings of the company. Tyers Asset Management LLC boosted its position in shares of Lithia Motors by 21.1% in the first quarter. Tyers Asset Management LLC now owns 1,288 shares of the company’s stock valued at $110,000 after buying an additional 224 shares during the period. Flinton Capital Management LLC boosted its position in shares of Lithia Motors by 21.1% in the first quarter. Flinton Capital Management LLC now owns 1,564 shares of the company’s stock valued at $134,000 after buying an additional 272 shares during the period. Ameritas Investment Partners Inc. purchased a new position in shares of Lithia Motors during the first quarter valued at approximately $176,000. State of Alaska Department of Revenue boosted its position in shares of Lithia Motors by 4.3% in the first quarter. State of Alaska Department of Revenue now owns 2,640 shares of the company’s stock valued at $226,000 after buying an additional 110 shares during the period. Finally, Engineers Gate Manager LP purchased a new position in shares of Lithia Motors during the first quarter valued at approximately $231,000. 97.34% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

Shares of Lithia Motors, Inc. (NYSE:LAD) traded up 0.50% on Friday, hitting $103.79. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 234,100 shares. The stock’s 50-day moving average price is $97.87 and its 200-day moving average price is $94.06. The firm has a market cap of $2.60 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 12.51 and a beta of 1.73. Lithia Motors, Inc. has a 52 week low of $75.85 and a 52 week high of $109.42.

Lithia Motors (NYSE:LAD) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Friday, July 28th. The company reported $2.28 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $2.23 by $0.05. Lithia Motors had a return on equity of 21.66% and a net margin of 2.26%. The company had revenue of $2.47 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $2.45 billion. During the same period in the previous year, the business earned $1.96 earnings per share. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up 15.6% compared to the same quarter last year. Equities analysts expect that Lithia Motors, Inc. will post $8.54 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, August 25th. Investors of record on Friday, August 11th will be given a dividend of $0.27 per share. This represents a $1.08 annualized dividend and a yield of 1.04%. The ex-dividend date is Wednesday, August 9th. Lithia Motors’s payout ratio is 13.01%.

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Several brokerages recently commented on LAD. Bank of America Corporation cut Lithia Motors from a “neutral” rating to an “underperform” rating and set a $92.00 target price for the company. in a research report on Friday, June 16th. Morgan Stanley reaffirmed an “overweight” rating and issued a $116.00 target price (up from $106.00) on shares of Lithia Motors in a research report on Wednesday, August 2nd. Zacks Investment Research cut Lithia Motors from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report on Tuesday, April 18th. BidaskClub raised Lithia Motors from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Wednesday, July 5th. Finally, Jefferies Group LLC reaffirmed a “buy” rating and issued a $115.00 target price on shares of Lithia Motors in a research report on Wednesday, June 28th. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, four have assigned a hold rating and five have issued a buy rating to the stock. The company has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $109.17.

In related news, Director Susan O. Cain sold 1,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, August 8th. The stock was sold at an average price of $105.64, for a total transaction of $105,640.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now directly owns 12,242 shares in the company, valued at $1,293,244.88. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available through this link. Also, CEO Bryan B. Deboer sold 7,466 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, June 7th. The stock was sold at an average price of $95.00, for a total value of $709,270.00. Following the transaction, the chief executive officer now owns 114,183 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $10,847,385. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last 90 days, insiders have sold 209,296 shares of company stock valued at $20,951,694. 7.85% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

About Lithia Motors

Lithia Motors, Inc is an operator of automotive franchises and a retailer of new and used vehicles and related services. As of February 28, 2017, it offered 30 brands of new vehicles and all brands of used vehicles in 154 stores in the United States and online at Lithia.com, DCHauto.com and CarboneCars.com.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Lithia Motors (NYSE:LAD)

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