Russell Investments Group Ltd. boosted its position in shares of AutoNation, Inc. (NYSE:AN) by 35.4% during the 2nd quarter, according to the company in its most recent filing with the SEC. The institutional investor owned 23,240 shares of the company’s stock after buying an additional 6,082 shares during the quarter. Russell Investments Group Ltd.’s holdings in AutoNation were worth $981,000 as of its most recent SEC filing.

A number of other large investors have also recently bought and sold shares of AN. Nationwide Fund Advisors lifted its holdings in AutoNation by 1.9% during the 1st quarter. Nationwide Fund Advisors now owns 27,268 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,153,000 after buying an additional 511 shares in the last quarter. Sumitomo Mitsui Asset Management Company LTD lifted its holdings in AutoNation by 35.7% during the 1st quarter. Sumitomo Mitsui Asset Management Company LTD now owns 6,943 shares of the company’s stock worth $293,000 after buying an additional 1,828 shares in the last quarter. Mitsubishi UFJ Kokusai Asset Management Co. Ltd. lifted its holdings in AutoNation by 3.0% during the 1st quarter. Mitsubishi UFJ Kokusai Asset Management Co. Ltd. now owns 11,265 shares of the company’s stock worth $476,000 after buying an additional 327 shares in the last quarter. Great West Life Assurance Co. Can lifted its holdings in AutoNation by 5.2% during the 1st quarter. Great West Life Assurance Co. Can now owns 58,208 shares of the company’s stock worth $2,460,000 after buying an additional 2,880 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Sumitomo Mitsui Trust Holdings Inc. lifted its holdings in AutoNation by 1.7% during the 1st quarter. Sumitomo Mitsui Trust Holdings Inc. now owns 180,709 shares of the company’s stock worth $7,642,000 after buying an additional 3,003 shares in the last quarter. 73.44% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

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Shares of AutoNation, Inc. (NYSE AN) traded down 0.67% during mid-day trading on Thursday, hitting $46.21. 384,295 shares of the company’s stock traded hands. The firm has a 50-day moving average of $42.44 and a 200 day moving average of $41.95. AutoNation, Inc. has a 52 week low of $38.20 and a 52 week high of $53.74. The company has a market cap of $4.64 billion, a PE ratio of 11.51 and a beta of 1.22.

AutoNation (NYSE:AN) last issued its earnings results on Wednesday, August 2nd. The company reported $0.86 earnings per share for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.98 by ($0.12). AutoNation had a net margin of 1.90% and a return on equity of 16.71%. The company had revenue of $5.28 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $5.56 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the business earned $1.08 EPS. The business’s quarterly revenue was down 3.0% on a year-over-year basis. Equities research analysts predict that AutoNation, Inc. will post $3.59 EPS for the current year.

AutoNation declared that its Board of Directors has approved a share repurchase program on Tuesday, August 29th that allows the company to buyback $250.00 million in outstanding shares. This buyback authorization allows the company to reacquire up to 6% of its stock through open market purchases. Stock buyback programs are usually an indication that the company’s board believes its shares are undervalued.

In other AutoNation news, Director Robert R. Grusky sold 2,800 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, August 4th. The shares were sold at an average price of $38.99, for a total value of $109,172.00. Following the sale, the director now owns 30,713 shares in the company, valued at $1,197,499.87. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through this link. Company insiders own 3.10% of the company’s stock.

Several research firms have issued reports on AN. Morgan Stanley reduced their price objective on AutoNation from $57.00 to $53.00 and set an “overweight” rating on the stock in a report on Friday, June 9th. BidaskClub raised AutoNation from a “strong sell” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Monday, August 14th. Wells Fargo & Company reaffirmed a “market perform” rating and set a $45.00 price objective (down previously from $48.50) on shares of AutoNation in a report on Monday, July 17th. ValuEngine downgraded AutoNation from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Friday, September 1st. Finally, Deutsche Bank AG reduced their price objective on AutoNation from $46.00 to $43.00 and set a “hold” rating on the stock in a report on Thursday, August 3rd. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, ten have given a hold rating and two have given a buy rating to the stock. The stock currently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $45.70.

AutoNation Company Profile

AutoNation, Inc (AutoNation) is an automotive retailer in the United States. The Company offers a range of automotive products and services, including new vehicles, used vehicles, parts and service, which includes automotive repair and maintenance services, as well as wholesale parts and collision businesses, and automotive finance and insurance products, including vehicle service and other protection products, as well as the arranging of financing for vehicle purchases through third-party finance sources.

Institutional Ownership by Quarter for AutoNation (NYSE:AN)

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