KAR Auction Services Target of Unusually High Options Trading (NYSE:KAR)

KAR Auction Services Inc (NYSE:KAR) was the recipient of some unusual options trading on Wednesday. Stock investors bought 10,219 put options on the stock. This represents an increase of approximately 1,778% compared to the average daily volume of 544 put options.

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Shares of KAR Auction Services stock opened at $22.79 on Friday. The firm has a market capitalization of $2.76 billion, a PE ratio of 7.70, a P/E/G ratio of 1.28 and a beta of 1.06. KAR Auction Services has a twelve month low of $16.41 and a twelve month high of $28.61. The firm’s 50-day moving average price is $24.20 and its 200 day moving average price is $35.25. The company has a current ratio of 1.29, a quick ratio of 1.29 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.36.

KAR Auction Services (NYSE:KAR) last released its earnings results on Tuesday, November 5th. The specialty retailer reported $0.35 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.39 by ($0.04). The business had revenue of $701.90 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $697.46 million. KAR Auction Services had a return on equity of 16.67% and a net margin of 6.95%. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 14.6% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period last year, the business earned $0.70 earnings per share. On average, sell-side analysts predict that KAR Auction Services will post 1.15 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, January 3rd. Stockholders of record on Friday, December 20th will be issued a dividend of $0.19 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, December 19th. This represents a $0.76 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 3.33%. KAR Auction Services’s dividend payout ratio is currently 25.68%.

In other KAR Auction Services news, Director Mark E. Hill acquired 18,500 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, November 11th. The stock was purchased at an average price of $21.50 per share, for a total transaction of $397,750.00. Following the acquisition, the director now owns 48,200 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,036,300. The purchase was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. Corporate insiders own 1.10% of the company’s stock.

Institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. Baskin Financial Services Inc. acquired a new stake in KAR Auction Services in the 2nd quarter valued at approximately $260,000. Janus Henderson Group PLC lifted its position in KAR Auction Services by 44.5% in the second quarter. Janus Henderson Group PLC now owns 3,416,468 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock valued at $85,412,000 after acquiring an additional 1,052,915 shares during the last quarter. Clear Street Markets LLC purchased a new stake in KAR Auction Services in the second quarter valued at $1,366,000. Boston Financial Mangement LLC lifted its position in KAR Auction Services by 0.8% in the second quarter. Boston Financial Mangement LLC now owns 484,611 shares of the specialty retailer’s stock valued at $12,115,000 after acquiring an additional 4,043 shares during the last quarter. Finally, RMB Capital Management LLC purchased a new stake in KAR Auction Services in the second quarter valued at $1,298,000. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 99.42% of the company’s stock.

KAR has been the topic of several analyst reports. ValuEngine raised KAR Auction Services from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Wednesday, October 2nd. CJS Securities downgraded KAR Auction Services from an “outperform” rating to a “market perform” rating in a research report on Thursday, November 7th. Finally, Zacks Investment Research downgraded KAR Auction Services from a “strong-buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Friday, November 8th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, four have assigned a hold rating and three have assigned a buy rating to the company. KAR Auction Services presently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $33.58.

About KAR Auction Services

KAR Auction Services, Inc, together with its subsidiaries, provides used car auction and salvage auction services in the United States, Canada, Mexico, and the United Kingdom. The company operates through three segments: ADESA Auctions, IAA, and AFC. The ADESA Auctions segment offers whole car auctions and related services to the vehicle remarketing industry through online auctions and auction facilities.

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