Autozone Gives Auto Stocks a Boost

Auto part retailer and supplier, Autozone (NYSE:AZO) reported better than estimated results for its second quarter. Earnings per share were higher by 24.4 percent at $4.15, versus Street expectations of $4.04 per share. Revenues were $1.804 billion, up 8.6% compared to last year. Same store sales in the U.S. were higher by 5.9% and gross margins improved to 51.3 percent against 50.9 percent a year ago.

A reason for the outperformance could be the increasing tendency of Americans to drive older cars. According to statistics compiled by Polk, the average age of cars and light trucks reached a record 10.8 years last year. The aging cars need to replace parts such as belts, batteries and hose pipes. On the other hand, high gas prices are reducing the average miles-per-drive, thus reducing maintenance requirements — a negative for companies such as Autozone.

Autozone’s upbeat results are in line with similar beats by other companies in the industry such as O’Reilly Automotive (NASDAQ:ORLY) and Advance Auto Parts (NYSE:AAP).

Here’s how all these stocks are reacting to the news:

AutoZone Inc. (NYSE:AZO): AZO shares recently traded at $374.68, up $8.59, or 2.35%. They have traded in a 52-week range of $256.86 to $367.59. Volume today was 481,062 shares versus a 3-month average volume of 348,302 shares. The company’s trailing P/E is 18.30, while trailing earnings are $20.47 per share.

O’Reilly Automotive Inc. (NASDAQ:ORLY): ORLY shares recently traded at $86.59, up $0.9, or 1.05%. They have traded in a 52-week range of $54.50 to $86.72. Volume today was 665,355 shares versus a 3-month average volume of 946,387 shares. The company’s trailing P/E is 23.40, while trailing earnings are $3.71 per share.

Advance Auto Parts Inc. (NYSE:AAP): AAP shares recently traded at $85.74, up $1.57, or 1.87%. They have traded in a 52-week range of $49.50 to $87.49. Volume today was 280,792 shares versus a 3-month average volume of 953,660 shares. The company’s trailing P/E is 16.75, while trailing earnings are $5.11 per share.

To contact the reporter on this story: Alex Capel at staff.writers@wallstcheatsheet.com

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Damien Hoffman at editors@wallstcheatsheet.com

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