Auto dealer UnitedAuto reports higher earnings


DETROIT, Oct 29 (Reuters) - Auto dealer UnitedAuto Group Inc. reported a 63 percent increase in third-quarter earnings on Tuesday as acquisitions of dealerships increased revenue.

The company said it earned $22 million, or 53 cents a share, compared with $13.5 million, or 38 cents a share, in the same quarter a year ago. Revenue increased 37 percent to $2.1 billion.

Analysts' average estimate for third-quarter earnings was 53 cents a share, according to Thompson First Call.

The Detroit-based company and other publicly traded dealership chains have been increasing their earnings in recent years by buying privately owned franchises.

Such groups have seen earnings grow as they cut overhead costs among their franchises. Automakers have also helped prop up earnings by keeping U.S. new vehicle sales running at better-than-expected rates so far this year.



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