Corp 1000

: AutoNation profit easily tops expectations

Automotive retailer AutoNation Inc. AN easily topped profit expectations Friday for its latest quarter while benefiting from higher sales of and prices for new vehicles. The company notched fourth-quarter net income of $286.4 million, or $5.72 a share, compared with $387.1 million, or $5.78 a share, in the year-prior quarter. On an adjusted basis, AutoNation earned $6.37 a share, up from $5.76 a share a year before and ahead of the FactSet consensus, which was for $5.83 a share. Revenue ticked up to $6.70 billion from $6.58 billion, while analysts were modeling $6.52 billion. The company benefited from higher average selling prices for vehicles, higher unit sales of new vehicles, and growth in the after-sales business, trends which outweighed softness in used-vehicle sales. “We continue to perform well in the current environment while taking significant steps to address the industry transformation,” Chief Executive Mike Manley said in a release.

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