AutoZone (AZO) Receives New Coverage from Analysts at Wells Fargo
Research analysts at Wells Fargo began coverage on shares of AutoZone (NYSE:AZO) in a report issued on Monday, MarketBeat.com reports. The firm set an “outperform” rating and a $700.00 price target on the stock. Wells Fargo’s target price suggests a potential upside of 16.77% from the company’s previous close.
AZO has been the topic of a number of other research reports. Zacks Investment Research raised shares of AutoZone from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $819.00 target price on the stock in a report on Tuesday, February 6th. Credit Suisse Group set a $790.00 target price on shares of AutoZone and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a report on Thursday, January 4th. Morgan Stanley cut their target price on shares of AutoZone from $800.00 to $750.00 and set an “equal weight” rating on the stock in a report on Wednesday, February 28th. Guggenheim reissued a “neutral” rating on shares of AutoZone in a report on Tuesday, April 17th. Finally, Citigroup cut their target price on shares of AutoZone from $820.00 to $790.00 and set a “buy” rating on the stock in a report on Thursday, March 1st. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eleven have issued a hold rating and twelve have given a buy rating to the company. The stock currently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $755.63.
NYSE AZO traded up $3.63 during trading hours on Monday, reaching $599.47. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 247,618 shares, compared to its average volume of 424,845. The company has a quick ratio of 0.15, a current ratio of 0.98 and a debt-to-equity ratio of -3.79. AutoZone has a 52 week low of $491.13 and a 52 week high of $797.89. The stock has a market capitalization of $16,237.24, a P/E ratio of 13.93, a P/E/G ratio of 0.96 and a beta of 0.84.
AutoZone declared that its board has approved a share buyback plan on Tuesday, March 20th that authorizes the company to buyback $1.00 billion in outstanding shares. This buyback authorization authorizes the company to buy shares of its stock through open market purchases. Stock buyback plans are typically a sign that the company’s board of directors believes its shares are undervalued.
In related news, Director Douglas H. Brooks acquired 162 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, April 16th. The shares were acquired at an average price of $607.49 per share, for a total transaction of $98,413.38. Following the completion of the purchase, the director now directly owns 1,904 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $1,156,660.96. The purchase was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is accessible through this hyperlink. 2.80% of the stock is owned by company insiders.
Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. Green Square Capital LLC increased its stake in shares of AutoZone by 167.1% during the fourth quarter. Green Square Capital LLC now owns 1,159 shares of the company’s stock valued at $824,000 after acquiring an additional 725 shares during the period. Xact Kapitalforvaltning AB increased its stake in shares of AutoZone by 5.8% during the fourth quarter. Xact Kapitalforvaltning AB now owns 6,230 shares of the company’s stock valued at $4,432,000 after acquiring an additional 344 shares during the period. BRITISH COLUMBIA INVESTMENT MANAGEMENT Corp increased its stake in shares of AutoZone by 13.6% during the fourth quarter. BRITISH COLUMBIA INVESTMENT MANAGEMENT Corp now owns 10,917 shares of the company’s stock valued at $7,766,000 after acquiring an additional 1,304 shares during the period. MetLife Investment Advisors LLC acquired a new position in shares of AutoZone during the fourth quarter valued at approximately $6,052,000. Finally, Glenmede Trust Co. NA grew its position in AutoZone by 5.8% in the fourth quarter. Glenmede Trust Co. NA now owns 3,486 shares of the company’s stock worth $2,478,000 after buying an additional 192 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 95.81% of the company’s stock.
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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