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Earnings preview: What to expect from AutoZone Q1?

Automotive replacement parts retailer AutoZone (AZO) is scheduled to report its earnings results for the third quarter of 2019 on Tuesday before the market opens. The results will be benefited by the initiatives to improving in-store systems and websites along with its strategy to enhance the customer shopping experience.

The company is expected to continue seeing rapid growth in website traffic as well as Ship-To-Home and Buy Online Pick Up In Store sales. Also, AutoZone is likely to accelerate growth in its online platforms in both retail and commercial. The total auto parts sales are anticipated to grow and domestic same-store sales could drive the growth of the top line.

The results will be benefited by the ongoing initiatives to boost store traffic and ramp up the domestic supply chain network. The benefits of recent investments in retail platforms could drive the quarterly results, with a focus on creating an omnichannel for customers.

AutoZone store front
Image Courtesy: AutoZone / Facebook post

Analysts expect the company’s earnings to jump by 12.80% to $15.14 per share and revenue will rise by 4.20% to $2.77 billion for the third quarter. In comparison, during the previous year quarter, the company posted a profit of $13.42 per share on revenue of $2.66 billion.

The company has surprised investors by beating analysts’ expectations in the past four quarters. It is expected that AutoZone will report upbeat results for the third quarter. Majority of the analysts recommended a “hold” rating while expecting the stock to reach $1,037.24 per share in the next 52 weeks.

For the second quarter, AutoZone posted a 10% growth in earnings helped by tax benefits. Revenue inched up by 1.6% year-over-year. Inventory rose by 5.4% driven by new stores and increased product placement. For the quarter, total auto parts sales increased 3.1% and domestic same-store sales were up 2.6%.

During the quarter, the company opened 20 new stores in the United States and its commercial business opened 22 net new programs. AutoZone expects to open about 150 net new commercial programs this fiscal year. With the new stores opened, the company finished this past quarter with 5,651 stores in 50 states in the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. 568 stores in Mexico and 22 in Brazil for a total AutoZone store count of 6,241.

Shares of AutoZone opened lower on Friday but changed course to the green territory on the NYSE. The stock has risen over 52% in the past year and over 7% in the past three months.

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