Avis Budget Group (CAR) Downgraded to Sell at Zacks Investment Research

Avis Budget Group (NASDAQ:CAR) was downgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note issued to investors on Tuesday.

According to Zacks, “Avis Budget continues to face hurdles like high fleet costs and stiff competition from other players in the market, mainly on grounds of pricing. The company faces the risk of losing rental volumes if it is unable to match up to industry pricing standards. In addition, volatility in market demand, foreign currency risks and dependence on third-parties remain headwinds. Avis Budget’s third-quarter margins were hurt by high fleet costs across both segments and adverse currency movements in the International segment. Though the company is progressing well with its disciplined pricing initiatives and expects these to offset the rising fleet costs, we would wait to see more pronounced results on this front before turning optimistic. However, sustained productivity growth, implementation of pricing initiatives and potential revenue-generating synergies from acquisitions bode well for future. It outperformed the industry in the last three months.”

Other equities research analysts also recently issued reports about the company. Northcoast Research reaffirmed a “buy” rating on shares of Avis Budget Group in a research note on Tuesday, November 7th. BidaskClub downgraded Avis Budget Group from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Friday, November 3rd. ValuEngine raised Avis Budget Group from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Thursday, October 5th. B. Riley assumed coverage on Avis Budget Group in a research note on Friday, September 22nd. They set a “buy” rating and a $36.00 price target for the company. Finally, TheStreet raised Avis Budget Group from a “c” rating to a “b-” rating in a research note on Friday, November 10th. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, four have given a hold rating, seven have assigned a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the stock. The stock has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $37.70.

Avis Budget Group (NASDAQ:CAR) traded down $0.62 during trading hours on Tuesday, hitting $43.88. The company had a trading volume of 962,500 shares, compared to its average volume of 2,822,433. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 35.24, a current ratio of 1.28 and a quick ratio of 1.28. Avis Budget Group has a fifty-two week low of $20.71 and a fifty-two week high of $46.31. The firm has a market cap of $3,572.78, a price-to-earnings ratio of 32.50 and a beta of 2.53.

Avis Budget Group (NASDAQ:CAR) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Monday, November 6th. The business services provider reported $3.10 EPS for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $2.99 by $0.11. Avis Budget Group had a return on equity of 95.28% and a net margin of 1.26%. The firm had revenue of $2.75 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $2.78 billion. During the same period last year, the company posted $2.47 EPS. The business’s quarterly revenue was up 3.6% compared to the same quarter last year. analysts anticipate that Avis Budget Group will post 2.65 EPS for the current year.

In related news, major shareholder Srs Investment Management, Llc acquired 3,500,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, December 8th. The stock was acquired at an average price of $40.56 per share, for a total transaction of $141,960,000.00. The purchase was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, Chairman Ronald L. Nelson sold 275,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, December 4th. The shares were sold at an average price of $40.22, for a total value of $11,060,500.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the chairman now directly owns 473,214 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $19,032,667.08. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last 90 days, insiders have sold 739,581 shares of company stock valued at $30,037,022. 2.80% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.

Several hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of CAR. Crow Point Partners LLC acquired a new stake in shares of Avis Budget Group in the 3rd quarter valued at $107,000. FNY Managed Accounts LLC bought a new position in shares of Avis Budget Group in the 3rd quarter worth about $160,000. Ladenburg Thalmann Financial Services Inc. raised its position in shares of Avis Budget Group by 1,413.3% in the 3rd quarter. Ladenburg Thalmann Financial Services Inc. now owns 4,540 shares of the business services provider’s stock worth $172,000 after acquiring an additional 4,240 shares in the last quarter. Deprince Race & Zollo Inc. bought a new stake in Avis Budget Group in the 3rd quarter valued at about $202,000. Finally, Brown Advisory Inc. bought a new stake in Avis Budget Group in the 3rd quarter valued at about $204,000.

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About Avis Budget Group

Avis Budget Group Inc is a provider of vehicle rental and car sharing services. The Company operates three brands, which include Avis, Budget and Zipcar. Avis and Budget are a rental car supplier. It also owns Payless, which a car rental brand; Apex, which is a car rental brand in New Zealand and Australia; Maggiore, a vehicle rental brand in Italy, and France Cars, which operates light commercial vehicle fleets in France.

Analyst Recommendations for Avis Budget Group (NASDAQ:CAR)

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