Sonic Automotive (SAH) Receiving Somewhat Favorable News Coverage, Report Finds

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News headlines about Sonic Automotive (NYSE:SAH) have been trending somewhat positive this week, according to Accern Sentiment Analysis. The research group identifies positive and negative media coverage by reviewing more than 20 million news and blog sources. Accern ranks coverage of companies on a scale of negative one to one, with scores closest to one being the most favorable. Sonic Automotive earned a daily sentiment score of 0.08 on Accern’s scale. Accern also gave news stories about the company an impact score of 46.8885885584169 out of 100, meaning that recent media coverage is somewhat unlikely to have an effect on the stock’s share price in the near future.

SAH stock traded up $0.15 during midday trading on Monday, hitting $21.95. The stock had a trading volume of 2,095 shares, compared to its average volume of 237,936. The firm has a market cap of $890.52 million, a price-to-earnings ratio of 11.86, a PEG ratio of 4.67 and a beta of 1.58. The company has a quick ratio of 0.21, a current ratio of 1.03 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.19. Sonic Automotive has a 1-year low of $15.95 and a 1-year high of $23.60.

Sonic Automotive (NYSE:SAH) last released its earnings results on Friday, July 27th. The company reported $0.35 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.34 by $0.01. The business had revenue of $2.51 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $2.47 billion. Sonic Automotive had a net margin of 0.95% and a return on equity of 10.42%. Sonic Automotive’s revenue for the quarter was up 4.2% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the previous year, the business earned $0.40 earnings per share. research analysts expect that Sonic Automotive will post 1.94 earnings per share for the current year.

The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, October 15th. Stockholders of record on Friday, September 14th will be issued a dividend of $0.06 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, September 13th. This represents a $0.24 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 1.09%. Sonic Automotive’s dividend payout ratio is currently 12.97%.

Several equities analysts recently issued reports on the stock. Morgan Stanley lowered shares of Sonic Automotive from an “overweight” rating to an “underweight” rating and set a $25.00 target price on the stock. in a report on Tuesday, July 10th. Buckingham Research dropped their target price on shares of Sonic Automotive from $21.00 to $19.00 and set a “$19.55” rating on the stock in a report on Wednesday, July 18th. ValuEngine upgraded shares of Sonic Automotive from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Monday, July 30th. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Sonic Automotive from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $23.00 target price on the stock in a report on Monday, July 16th. Finally, Stephens restated a “hold” rating and issued a $19.00 target price on shares of Sonic Automotive in a report on Friday, July 27th. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating and five have assigned a hold rating to the company. Sonic Automotive currently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $20.00.

In related news, Chairman O Bruton Smith acquired 15,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, May 25th. The shares were purchased at an average price of $21.41 per share, for a total transaction of $321,150.00. Following the completion of the acquisition, the chairman now owns 909,691 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $19,476,484.31. The acquisition was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available through the SEC website. Also, CFO Heath Byrd sold 8,500 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, June 20th. The shares were sold at an average price of $23.00, for a total transaction of $195,500.00. Following the transaction, the chief financial officer now owns 153,535 shares in the company, valued at approximately $3,531,305. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 32.30% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.

About Sonic Automotive

Sonic Automotive, Inc operates as an automotive retailer in the United States. It operates in two segments, Franchised Dealerships and Pre-Owned Stores. The Franchised Dealerships segment is involved in the sale of new and used cars and light trucks, and replacement parts; provision of vehicle maintenance, manufacturer warranty repair, and paint and collision repair services; and arrangement of extended warranties, service contracts, financing, insurance, and other aftermarket products.

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