The 10-second takeaway
For the quarter ended Sep. 30 (Q3), Lithia Motors beat expectations on revenues and beat expectations on earnings per share.
Compared to the prior-year quarter, revenue grew significantly and GAAP earnings per share expanded significantly.
Gross margins dropped, operating margins increased, net margins expanded.
Lithia Motors logged revenue of $888.4 million. The seven analysts polled by S&P Capital IQ foresaw a top line of $864.3 million on the same basis. GAAP reported sales were 20% higher than the prior-year quarter's $737.9 million.
Source: S&P Capital IQ. Quarterly periods. Dollar amounts in millions. Non-GAAP figures may vary to maintain comparability with estimates.
EPS came in at $0.90. The eight earnings estimates compiled by S&P Capital IQ forecast $0.77 per share. GAAP EPS of $0.90 for Q3 were 45% higher than the prior-year quarter's $0.62 per share. (The prior-year quarter included $0.01 per share in earnings from discontinued operations.)
Source: S&P Capital IQ. Quarterly periods. Non-GAAP figures may vary to maintain comparability with estimates.
For the quarter, gross margin was 16.2%, 60 basis points worse than the prior-year quarter. Operating margin was 4.9%, 60 basis points better than the prior-year quarter. Net margin was 2.6%, 40 basis points better than the prior-year quarter.
Next quarter's average estimate for revenue is $819.3 million. On the bottom line, the average EPS estimate is $0.63.
Next year's average estimate for revenue is $3.29 billion. The average EPS estimate is $2.81.
Of Wall Street recommendations tracked by S&P Capital IQ, the average opinion on Lithia Motors is buy, with an average price target of $36.89.
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Seth Jayson had no position in any company mentioned here at the time of publication. You can view his stock holdings here. He is co-advisor of Motley Fool Hidden Gems, which provides new small-cap ideas every month, backed by a real-money portfolio. The Motley Fool has no positions in the stocks mentioned above. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.