KAR Auction Services Inc (KAR) Short Interest Down 51.8% in December

KAR Auction Services Inc (NYSE:KAR) was the recipient of a large decline in short interest during the month of December. As of December 29th, there was short interest totalling 398,139 shares, a decline of 51.8% from the December 15th total of 825,613 shares. Currently, 0.3% of the shares of the company are short sold. Based on an average trading volume of 615,907 shares, the short-interest ratio is currently 0.6 days.

KAR has been the subject of a number of research analyst reports. Zacks Investment Research raised shares of KAR Auction Services from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $54.00 target price for the company in a research report on Tuesday, October 10th. JPMorgan Chase & Co. upped their price objective on shares of KAR Auction Services from $52.00 to $55.00 and gave the company an “overweight” rating in a research report on Monday, October 30th. Gabelli lowered shares of KAR Auction Services from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating and set a $53.00 price objective for the company. in a research report on Thursday, November 2nd. Finally, Stephens set a $57.00 price objective on shares of KAR Auction Services and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research report on Wednesday, January 17th. Three analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and four have given a buy rating to the stock. KAR Auction Services currently has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $54.60.

KAR Auction Services (NYSE:KAR) opened at $54.45 on Tuesday. The company has a market cap of $7,370.00, a PE ratio of 32.03, a PEG ratio of 1.54 and a beta of 1.08. The company has a current ratio of 1.35, a quick ratio of 1.35 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.90. KAR Auction Services has a 52-week low of $40.27 and a 52-week high of $54.49.

KAR Auction Services (NYSE:KAR) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, October 31st. The specialty retailer reported $0.57 EPS for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.51 by $0.06. The business had revenue of $843.00 million during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $846.42 million. KAR Auction Services had a net margin of 6.94% and a return on equity of 22.37%. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was up 6.8% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the prior year, the business earned $0.50 earnings per share. sell-side analysts forecast that KAR Auction Services will post 2.37 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, January 5th. Stockholders of record on Wednesday, December 20th were given a dividend of $0.35 per share. The ex-dividend date was Tuesday, December 19th. This represents a $1.40 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 2.57%. This is a positive change from KAR Auction Services’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.32. KAR Auction Services’s dividend payout ratio is currently 82.35%.

In other KAR Auction Services news, EVP Lisa A. Price sold 6,563 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Friday, January 19th. The shares were sold at an average price of $54.05, for a total transaction of $354,730.15. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this link. Also, EVP Benjamin Skuy sold 12,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Wednesday, November 22nd. The stock was sold at an average price of $48.50, for a total transaction of $582,000.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last three months, insiders have sold 38,563 shares of company stock valued at $1,929,930. Company insiders own 1.30% of the company’s stock.

Institutional investors and hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in the company. SG Americas Securities LLC raised its position in KAR Auction Services by 37.9% in the second quarter. SG Americas Securities LLC now owns 5,123 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock worth $215,000 after purchasing an additional 1,408 shares in the last quarter. Prudential Financial Inc. raised its position in KAR Auction Services by 12.5% in the second quarter. Prudential Financial Inc. now owns 7,220 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock worth $303,000 after purchasing an additional 800 shares in the last quarter. Alliancebernstein L.P. raised its position in KAR Auction Services by 0.9% in the second quarter. Alliancebernstein L.P. now owns 82,402 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock worth $3,458,000 after purchasing an additional 708 shares in the last quarter. Teachers Advisors LLC raised its position in KAR Auction Services by 39.7% in the second quarter. Teachers Advisors LLC now owns 198,401 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock worth $8,327,000 after purchasing an additional 56,425 shares in the last quarter. Finally, TIAA CREF Investment Management LLC raised its position in KAR Auction Services by 27.9% in the second quarter. TIAA CREF Investment Management LLC now owns 549,581 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock worth $23,066,000 after purchasing an additional 119,953 shares in the last quarter. 99.31% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

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KAR Auction Services Company Profile

KAR Auction Services, Inc is a provider of whole car auction services in North America, and salvage auction services in North America and the United Kingdom. The Company operates through three segments: ADESA, Inc (ADESA Auctions or ADESA), Insurance Auto Auctions, Inc (IAA) and Automotive Finance Corporation (AFC).

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