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Is AutoNation (AN) a Great Value Stock Right Now?

Here at Zacks, our focus is on the proven Zacks Rank system, which emphasizes earnings estimates and estimate revisions to find great stocks. Nevertheless, we are always paying attention to...

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This story originally appeared on Zacks

Here at Zacks, we focus on our proven ranking system, which places an emphasis on earnings estimates and estimate revisions, to find winning stocks. But we also understand that investors develop their own strategies, so we are constantly looking at the latest trends in value, growth, and momentum to find strong companies for our readers.

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Looking at the history of these trends, perhaps none is more beloved than value investing. This strategy simply looks to identify companies that are being undervalued by the broader market. Value investors use a variety of methods, including tried-and-true valuation metrics, to find these stocks.

On top of the Zacks Rank, investors can also look at our innovative Style Scores system to find stocks with specific traits. For example, value investors will want to focus on the "Value" category. Stocks with high Zacks Ranks and "A" grades for Value will be some of the highest-quality value stocks on the market today.

One company to watch right now is AutoNation (AN). AN is currently sporting a Zacks Rank of #1 (Strong Buy), as well as a Value grade of A.

AN is also sporting a PEG ratio of 0.36. This popular figure is similar to the widely-used P/E ratio, but the PEG ratio also considers a company's expected EPS growth rate. AN's PEG compares to its industry's average PEG of 0.41. Over the last 12 months, AN's PEG has been as high as 1.31 and as low as 0.36, with a median of 0.89.

Value investors also frequently use the P/S ratio. This metric is found by dividing a stock's price with the company's revenue. This is a popular metric because sales are harder to manipulate on an income statement, so they are often considered a better performance indicator. AN has a P/S ratio of 0.32. This compares to its industry's average P/S of 0.45.

Finally, investors will want to recognize that AN has a P/CF ratio of 6.23. This metric takes into account a company's operating cash flow and can be used to find stocks that are undervalued based on their solid cash outlook. This stock's P/CF looks attractive against its industry's average P/CF of 10.08. Over the past 52 weeks, AN's P/CF has been as high as 9.20 and as low as 5.93, with a median of 7.40.

These are only a few of the key metrics included in AutoNation, Inc.'s strong Value grade, but they help show that the stock is likely undervalued right now. When factoring in the strength of its earnings outlook, AN looks like an impressive value stock at the moment.



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