Advance Auto Parts, Inc.AAP reported adjusted earnings of $1.89 per share in third-quarter 2018 (ended Oct 6, 2018), up from $1.43 in the prior-year quarter. The figure surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $1.77. Adjusted operating income increased 12.5% year over year to $193.7 million.
Advance Auto Parts reported net revenues of $2.3 billion, beating the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $2.23 billion. Revenues were 4.3% higher than the year-ago quarter. During the quarter under review, comparable store sales were 4.6% higher year over year. This marks strongest comparable sales growth in eight years for the company.
Gross profit was $1.01 billion in the reported quarter, higher than the prior-year quarter figure of $947.7 million. Gross Profit margin increased 90 basis points year over year to 44.3%.
Adjusted selling, general and administrative (SG&A) expenses totaled $813.8 million compared with $775.5 million in the year-ago period.
Advance Auto Parts, Inc. Price, Consensus and EPS Surprise
Advance Auto Parts, Inc. Price, Consensus and EPS Surprise | Advance Auto Parts, Inc. Quote
Advance Auto Parts had cash and cash equivalents of $970 million as of Oct 6, 2018, up from $363.3 million as of Oct 7, 2017. The total long-term debt was $1.05 billion as of Oct 6, 2018, higher than $1.04 billion as of Dec 30, 2017.
In third-quarter 2018, operating cash flow was $681.5 million compared with $401 million in the same period of 2017.
Dividend & Share Repurchase
On Nov 7, 2018, Advance Auto Parts' board approved a cash dividend of 6 cents per share to be paid on Jan 4, 2019, for shareholders of record as of Dec 21, 2018.
On Aug 8, 2018, the board of directors authorized a $600-million share repurchase program, replacing the existing $500-million share repurchase program. In the third quarter, the company bought back 720 thousand shares for $119.9 million. At the end of third-quarter 2018, Advance Auto Parts had $480.1 million remaining under the share repurchase program.
As of Oct 6, 2018, Advance Auto Parts operated 4,981 stores and 139 Worldpac branches, and served approximately 1,229 independently-owned Carquest stores.
Zacks Rank & Other Stocks to Consider
Advance Auto Parts currently carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). A few other top-ranked stocks in the auto space are Allison Transmission Holdings, Inc. ALSN , Fox Factory Holding Corp. FOXF and AutoZone, Inc. AZO . While Allison Transmission and Fox Factory sport a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), AutoZone carries a Zacks Rank #2. You can see the complete list of today's Zacks #1 Rank stocks here .
Allison Transmission has an expected long-term growth rate of 10%. Over the past six months, shares of the company have surged 10%.
Fox Factory has an expected long-term growth rate of 17.2%. Over the past six months, shares of the company have risen 84.6%.
AutoZone has an expected long-term growth rate of 12.2%. Over the past six months, shares of the company have risen 19%.
The Hottest Tech Mega-Trend of All
Last year, it generated $8 billion in global revenues. By 2020, it's predicted to blast through the roof to $47 billion. Famed investor Mark Cuban says it will produce "the world's first trillionaires," but that should still leave plenty of money for regular investors who make the right trades early.
See Zacks' 3 Best Stocks to Play This Trend >>
Want the latest recommendations from Zacks Investment Research? Today, you can download 7 Best Stocks for the Next 30 Days. Click to get this free reportFox Factory Holding Corp. (FOXF): Free Stock Analysis ReportAdvance Auto Parts, Inc. (AAP): Free Stock Analysis ReportAutoZone, Inc. (AZO): Free Stock Analysis ReportAllison Transmission Holdings, Inc. (ALSN): Free Stock Analysis ReportTo read this article on Zacks.com click here.Zacks Investment Research