Wedbush set a $870.00 price objective on AutoZone (NYSE:AZO) in a research note issued to investors on Wednesday, The Fly reports. The brokerage currently has a buy rating on the stock.
Several other analysts have also issued reports on AZO. Deutsche Bank raised AutoZone from a hold rating to a buy rating and upped their target price for the stock from $675.00 to $805.00 in a research note on Wednesday, August 1st. MED raised AutoZone from a hold rating to a buy rating and increased their price objective for the company from $675.00 to $805.00 in a research note on Wednesday, August 1st. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Stephens raised AutoZone from an equal weight rating to an overweight rating and set a $875.00 price objective for the company in a research note on Wednesday, August 15th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Zacks Investment Research raised AutoZone from a hold rating to a buy rating and set a $860.00 price objective for the company in a research note on Tuesday, August 28th. Finally, Argus dropped their price objective on AutoZone to $820.00 and set a buy rating for the company in a research note on Thursday, August 30th. Eight analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, eleven have assigned a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the company. AutoZone presently has a consensus rating of Buy and a consensus target price of $796.54.
Shares of AZO opened at $827.53 on Wednesday. The company has a market capitalization of $21.15 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 16.44, a PEG ratio of 1.17 and a beta of 0.89. AutoZone has a 1 year low of $590.76 and a 1 year high of $839.38.
AutoZone announced that its Board of Directors has approved a share repurchase program on Wednesday, September 26th that allows the company to repurchase $1.25 billion in shares. This repurchase authorization allows the company to buy up to 6.1% of its shares through open market purchases. Shares repurchase programs are usually a sign that the company’s leadership believes its stock is undervalued.
In related news, VP Charles Pleas III sold 9,500 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Thursday, September 20th. The stock was sold at an average price of $759.85, for a total value of $7,218,575.00. Following the completion of the sale, the vice president now owns 13,862 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $10,533,040.70. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through this hyperlink. Also, Chairman William C. Rhodes III sold 23,700 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Thursday, September 27th. The stock was sold at an average price of $780.06, for a total value of $18,487,422.00. Following the completion of the sale, the chairman now directly owns 37,918 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $29,578,315.08. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold 60,487 shares of company stock valued at $46,667,608 in the last ninety days. 2.80% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.
Hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in the stock. Massey Quick Simon & CO. LLC raised its holdings in AutoZone by 222.4% in the third quarter. Massey Quick Simon & CO. LLC now owns 187 shares of the company’s stock worth $145,000 after purchasing an additional 129 shares in the last quarter. Bronfman E.L. Rothschild L.P. raised its holdings in AutoZone by 197.5% in the second quarter. Bronfman E.L. Rothschild L.P. now owns 235 shares of the company’s stock worth $158,000 after purchasing an additional 156 shares in the last quarter. First Interstate Bank raised its holdings in AutoZone by 332.7% in the second quarter. First Interstate Bank now owns 238 shares of the company’s stock worth $160,000 after purchasing an additional 183 shares in the last quarter. ELM Advisors LLC bought a new position in AutoZone in the third quarter worth $163,000. Finally, Flagship Harbor Advisors LLC bought a new position in AutoZone in the second quarter worth $173,000. 95.53% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.
AutoZone Inc retails and distributes automotive replacement parts and accessories. The company 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. Its 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, starters and alternators, thermostats, and water pumps.
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