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Lithia Motors Adds Ford Lincoln of Morgantown to Its Network

Zacks Equity Research

Lithia Motors, Inc. LAD made the announcement of adding Ford Lincoln of Morgantown, WV. This is the first dealership addition by the Medford, OR-based Lithia Motors in West Virginia.

The company is one of the leading automotive retailers of new and used vehicles and related services in the United States. The market for purchasing dealerships is growing fast. The company continuously strives to make acquisitions for increasing its market share and to cater to customer requirements in a better way.

The acquisition of Morgantown auto dealership is the latest instance of Lithia Motors’ successful strategy of acquiring stores with robust potential to generate higher returns. Importantly, the company’s revenues grew 17.2% in 2018 and its position increased by 29 spots on the Fortune 500 list to 265.

In first-quarter 2019, Lithia Motors reported adjusted earnings per share of $2.44, marking an 18% increase from $2.07 in the prior-year quarter. Further, the bottom line beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $2.15. This increase resulted from strong performance by the company’s three more profitable business lines, consisting of retail used vehicles, finance and insurance (F&I), and service body and parts.

Ford Lincoln of Morgantown is similar to Lithia Motors’ other stores located in exclusive markets. The excellent team of Ford Lincoln of Morgantown and strong resources of Lithia Motors are likely to aid the companies.

In the past three months, shares of the company have outperformed the industry it belongs to. Over this time frame, the stock has gained 36.3% compared with the industry’s growth of 15.9%.

Lithia Motors currently sports a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy).

A few other top-ranked stocks in the auto space are Ford Motor Company F, Fox Factory Holding Corp. FOXF and Cummins Inc. CMI, each currently carrying a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.

Ford has an expected long-term growth rate of 7.3%. Over the past three months, shares of the company have gained 15.3%.

Fox Factory has an expected long-term growth rate of 16.4%. Over the past three months, shares of the company have gained 10.6%.

Cummins has an expected long-term growth rate of 8%. Over the past three months, shares of the company have gained 3.4%.

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