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May 20, 2020
Retail Roundup: Home Depot and Walmart Report Earnings
Image Source: Home Depot Inc – June 2019 IR Presentation. Home improvement stores and retailers with large grocery/consumer staples offerings in the US held up relatively well during the COVID-19 pandemic. E-commerce sales enabled Home Depot and Walmart to continue chugging along as consumers opted for either home delivery or curbside pickup in order to stay away from large crowds. Going forward, consumer spending may come under pressure from elevated levels of unemployment, but for now, major fiscal stimulus measures appear to be helping offset the worst of that particularly in the US and other developed nations that embarked on meaningful fiscal stimulus programs (keeping in mind that the latest quarterly results from Home Depot and Walmart only cover part of the worst of the economic downturn due to COVID-19).
May 18, 2020
Excited By COVID-19 Vaccine Candidates
Image Shown: The race is on to find a cure, or better yet a vaccine, for COVID-19. Image Source: Pfizer Inc – First Quarter 2020 Earnings IR Presentation. The race for a COVID-19 cure and vaccine is rapidly evolving with a lot of exciting press releases being put forth. Gilead has taken the lead with a viable treatment, Sorrento is working toward a cure, and it seems most all of big pharma and biotech is racing to find a vaccine, from Johnson & Johnson to Sanofi/GSK and beyond. Though the evaluation of the full data set from a Phase 2 clinical trial means a lot more than the evaluation of a limited set of data from a Phase 1 clinical trial, we think COVID-19 is on the run as modern medicine pushes forward. We’re reiterating our bullish take on the markets today, as we believe that the Fed will do anything and everything to keep this market moving higher, meaning stocks may remain divorced both from economic data and even virus data for some time as they continue to climb. We continue to point to ideas in the Best Ideas Newsletter portfolio, Dividend Growth Newsletter portfolio, High Yield Dividend Newsletter portfolio and Exclusive publication. Our top 10 capital appreciation ideas and dividend growth ideas amid COVID-19, respectively, can be found at the following link, “Valuentum's COVID-19 Ideas Have Outperformed Significantly.” As we walk through a ‘who’s who’ as it relates to COVID-19 vaccine candidates, we maintain our view that investors may be facing a “win-win” situation as we outlined in our piece, “Stay Optimistic. Stay Bullish. I Am.” We remain unequivocally bullish on stocks for the long run.
May 11, 2020
Facebook Is Roaring Higher!
Image Shown: Shares of Facebook (blue line) have roared higher since reaching their March 2020 lows, far outpacing the rebound in the S&P 500 (orange line). We continue to like shares of FB as a top-weighted holding in our Best Ideas Newsletter portfolio. Top-weighted Best Ideas Newsletter portfolio holding Facebook posted first quarter 2020 earnings on April 29 that saw its GAAP revenues jump 18% year-over-year to $17.3 billion while its GAAP diluted EPS grew by 101% year-over-year, hitting $1.71. Please note that Facebook’s bottom-line comparison was made easier due to the firm recording a $3.0 billion legal settlement with the US Federal Trade Commission (‘FTC’) during the first quarter of 2019. While digital advertising spending levels are expected to get crushed in 2020 due to the ongoing coronavirus (‘COVID-19’) pandemic, Facebook communicated to investors that its long-term growth trajectory remained very promising during the firm’s latest quarterly conference call. In our view, digital advertising spending levels will quickly bounce back once economies around the world start to reopen in earnest, though we caution that efforts to reopen the economy and resume “normal” daily activities need to keep in mind the risk another wave of infections imposes.
May 6, 2020
Tyson Faces Operational Hurdles
Image Source: Tyson Foods Inc – Second Quarter of Fiscal 2020 Earnings IR Presentation. On May 4, the major meat and prepackaged food provider Tyson Foods reported second-quarter earnings for its fiscal 2020 (period ended March 28, 2020) that missed consensus estimates on both the top- and bottom-line, sending its shares sharply lower during the regular trading session that day. The ongoing coronavirus (‘COVID-19’) is hurting its production capabilities, in particular the operations of its meatpacking plants as numerous confirmed COVID-19 cases (that unfortunately includes fatalities) have emerged at those facilities and the facilities of its peers across the US, prompting many to close or scale back. For instance, Tyson was forced to temporarily close a large pork plant in Waterloo, Iowa, starting in late-April as many workers were calling out sick.
May 4, 2020
Visa Reports That Global Spending Levels May Have Started to Stabilize in April
Image Source: DeclanTM. One of our favorite companies and a top-weighted holding in our Best Ideas Newsletter portfolio, Visa, reported second-quarter earnings for fiscal 2020 (period ended March 31, 2020) which beat both consensus top- and bottom-line estimates. Going forward, while Visa’s very lucrative travel-related businesses (which includes payment processing and foreign currency transaction solutions) will take a hit from reduced travel worldwide due to the ongoing coronavirus (‘COVID-19’) pandemic, management is focused on controlling expenses to offset exogenous headwinds. Specifically, management noted that Visa would pull back on “discretionary spending especially related to personnel, travel, professional services, and marketing” which we appreciate.
Apr 28, 2020
Good News for Facebook Ahead of Earnings Report
Image Shown: Facebook Inc’s top-line has experienced meaningful growth in recent years. Image Source: Facebook Inc – Fourth Quarter and Full-Year 2019 Earnings IR Presentation. One of our favorite Best Ideas Newsletter portfolio holdings is Facebook, and we appreciate its pristine balance sheet (plenty of cash on hand and no debt on the books as of the end of 2019), promising growth trajectory (short-term headwinds aside, digital advertising is a secular growth market and likely to bounce back strongly once the pandemic subsides), and we would like to highlight that shares of FB trade at a meaningful discount to our fair value estimate (which sits at $234 per share) as of this writing. Recently, several things have happened that supports our thesis as to why Facebook is a stellar company which will cover in this note. The ongoing coronavirus (‘COVID-19’) pandemic will depress Facebook’s near-term performance, but the firm’s medium- and long-term outlook remains very promising.
Apr 21, 2020
Macy’s Will Find It Difficult to Unlock the (Fair) Value of Its Real Estate
Image Source: Valuentum. The embattled department store Macy’s suspended its dividend and drew down its revolving credit line on March 20 in order to shore up its financial position in the face of the ongoing coronavirus (‘COVID-19’) pandemic. All of Macy’s physical stores were temporarily closed on March 18, though some might shut down for good given the company’s financial woes. The fair value estimate of Macy’s is heavily dependent on factors well outside the control of management, and considering the US economy and global economy at-large are sliding toward a pandemic/leverage induced recession/depression, we aren’t optimistic on Macy’s ability to unlock the (fair) value of its real estate. Any real estate sales done in the foreseeable future will likely be at a discount to their fair value. As the firm continues to burn through cash--there’s a very high probability Macy’s will continue to generate negative free cash flows until the “cocooning” of households ends--the clock is working against Macy’s. We are staying away from the name.
Apr 17, 2020
Earnings Roundup for the Week Ended Sunday, April 19, Covering Companies Across the Board
Let's take a look at several earnings reports across numerous industries in this article as the ongoing coronavirus (‘COVID-19’) pandemic forces the global economy to a crawl. Please note that as these reports primarily cover the first quarter of calendar year 2020, the impact of the pandemic has yet to be truly reflected in corporate earnings. That said, these reports still provide an important glimpse into what to expect going forward and how companies are responding to the pandemic.
Apr 16, 2020
Johnson & Johnson Beats Estimates, Adjusts Guidance in Light of COVID-19
Image Source: Johnson & Johnson – First Quarter 2020 Earnings IR Presentation. On April 14, Best Ideas Newsletter and Dividend Growth Newsletter portfolio holding Johnson & Johnson increased its quarterly dividend by over 6% sequentially to $1.01 per share which represents the firm’s 58th consecutive annual increase. We view this payout boost in the face of the ongoing coronavirus (‘COVID-19’) pandemic as a sign of management’s confidence in Johnson & Johnson’s future free cash flows, which we appreciate. Shares of JNJ now yield ~2.8% as of this writing at the new annualized payout rate.
Apr 13, 2020
Dollar General Near All-Time Highs, Decides to Issue Long-Term Debt at Attractive Rates
Image Source: Dollar General Corporation – May 2016 Investor Day Presentation. Dollar General is now trading near its all-time highs after rising ~8.5% year-to-date, at a time when the S&P 500 is down almost 15%, as of the end of normal trading hours on April 9. We include shares of DG in our Best Ideas Newsletter portfolio and recently covered some of Dollar General’s operational updates in our ‘US Beer Sales Reportedly Surge During the Pandemic, Dollar General Well-Positioned to Meet Rising Demand’ article that can be viewed here. We are following up on that piece, and our note covering Dollar General’s most recent financial updates that can be viewed here, to highlight how Dollar General is maintaining its liquidity position during these harrowing times. The ongoing coronavirus (‘COVID-19’) pandemic is wreaking havoc on global economies and staying on top of debt maturities is a key part of maintaining the funds needed to meet surging demand for consumer staples products (keeping inventory management and other considerations in mind). Shares of DG yield ~0.9% as of this writing.
The High Yield Dividend Newsletter, Best Ideas Newsletter, Dividend Growth Newsletter, Nelson Exclusive publication, and any reports, articles and content found on this website are for information purposes only and should not be considered a solicitation to buy or sell any security. The sources of the data used on this website are believed by Valuentum to be reliable, but the data’s accuracy, completeness or interpretation cannot be guaranteed. Valuentum is not responsible for any errors or omissions or for results obtained from the use of its newsletters, reports, commentary, or publications and accepts no liability for how readers may choose to utilize the content. Valuentum is not a money manager, is not a registered investment advisor and does not offer brokerage or investment banking services. Valuentum, its employees, and affiliates may have long, short or derivative positions in the stock or stocks mentioned on this site.