Fundamental data is updated weekly, as of the prior weekend. Please download the Full Report and Dividend Report for any changes.
Latest Valuentum Commentary
Feb 27, 2020
Has the Stock Market Crash Begun?
Image: CDC. Transmission electron microscopic image of an isolate from the first U.S. case of COVID-19, formerly known as 2019-nCoV. The spherical viral particles, colorized blue, contain cross-section through the viral genome, seen as black dots.According to the latest Situation Report from the CDC, dated February 25, there are now more new cases reported from countries outside of China than from China. Globally, there are currently 80,000+ confirmed cases in nearly 40 countries, with China, South Korea, Italy and Iran the major hotspots. Up until now, investors have been anxiously waiting for the other shoe to drop (i.e. community spread in the United States), with the CDC even saying, “It's not so much a question of if this will happen anymore, but rather more a question of exactly when this will happen and how many people in this country (United States) will have severe illness.” Well, that “when” is now. The CDC just confirmed February 26, 2020, a possible instance of community spread of COVID-19 in the US.
Feb 24, 2020
ALERT: Adding Market Crash 'Protection,' Removing MSFT, BKNG
Image source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. We're adding out-of-the-money put options to both the Dividend Growth Newsletter portfolio and Best Ideas Newsletter portfolio. We're removing Microsoft from the Dividend Growth Newsletter portfolio, and we're removing Booking Holdings from the Best Ideas Newsletter portfolio. We reiterate that, had the Dow Jones Industrial Average already swooned a couple thousand points on news of the COVID-19 outbreak, we might have considered some undervalued stocks with strong momentum potential "buying opportunities." However, to this point in time, the markets have largely ignored COVID-19, with major US indices still sitting near all-time highs. We could be in for a wild ride in the coming weeks and months, and an outright market crash is not out of question. For those looking for short-idea considerations, please consider the Exclusive publication here. We remain fully-invested in the High Yield Dividend Newsletter portfolio given its yield and income focus.
Feb 22, 2020
Is a Stock Market Crash Coming? -- Coronavirus Update and P/E Ratios
Image Source: World Health Organization, Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), Situation Report -- 32. We don’t think this is the environment to put new capital to work, and we remain highly cautious of what COVID-19 means for global economic growth not just in the first quarter of 2020 but for the rest of this year (maybe longer). Right now, the US markets are not really factoring in anything related to COVID-19, and perhaps may be adjusting to China’s stimulus in artificially propping up the markets as if the outbreak is somehow a “positive thing.” With the S&P 500 trading at 19.0 forward earnings estimates--estimates that are likely too high given the evidence we are seeing with respect to a slowdown due to COVID-19--and corporate debt levels more elevated than ever before (note, a high net debt level should depress the P/E in enterprise valuation--US corporate debt has advanced 50% over the past decade, to $10 trillion), it is our contention that the current market reflects a “situation-equivalent” forward P/E (i.e. rightsizing for new net debt relative to the dot-com peak and adjusting for lower forward earnings expectations compared with current forecasts) perhaps greater than 24.4, which was recorded at the peak of the dot-com bubble. Though interest rates are lower than they were at the time of the dot-com crash, suggesting a modest reasonable bump to normalized forward P/E ratios of ~15 times to reflect “fair valuations,” we could seriously be in for fundamental-driven crash soon, as both the earnings multiple and earnings estimates contract aggressively. Hypothetically, a contraction to a 16x forward multiple on earnings estimates just 10% lower than currently forecast implies an S&P 500 of 2,566, or a swoon of about 20%-30% from current levels--and that would just get us down to 16x still-respectable forward numbers. How quantitative-driven price-agnostic trading may impact this scenario is not known either, and all of this could be setting up for a wild ride in the coming weeks and months. Fasten your seatbelts. We’ll have a few newsletter portfolio alerts coming Monday.
Feb 10, 2020
‘Value Trap’ Shoots and Scores!
Author Brian Nelson is the President of Investment Research at Valuentum. In his role, he has updated and overseen over 20,000 discounted cash flow models during the past 10 years. Prior to Valuentum, he worked as the Director of Methodology at Morningstar, a large independent research firm in Chicago, developing the company’s discounted cash-flow model used to derive the fair value estimates for the company’s coverage universe.
Jan 31, 2020
Coronavirus May Trigger Long-Anticipated Global Recession
Image: Wuhan New Coronavirus. This was the catalyst that nobody was expecting, a novel coronavirus that nobody had in their economic models. We think global economic activity is slowing as we speak, and the spread of the virus may only accelerate in mainland China and elsewhere. Investors should keep a level head and perhaps think about adding protection to their portfolios before it becomes too expensive.
Jan 29, 2020
The Great Guyanese Oil Boom
Image Shown: A drill ship floating in open waters. Image Source: Exxon Mobil Corporation – 2019 IR Presentation. Guyana’s economy of ~780,000 people is about to experience the oil boom bonanza of a lifetime, even in the relatively subdued oil price environment Exxon Mobil is currently operating in, as substantial royalties and taxes are set to fill the government’s coffers. That will allow for major public investments in healthcare, education, infrastructure, and so much more. Given the relatively small size of Guyana’s population, there will be a lot of new funds to go around. For Exxon Mobil and its partners, turning ~750,000 barrels of gross daily crude oil production capacity online by 2025 would be quite the achievement. In less than five years, the consortium went from hitting it big on the exploration side to reaching first-oil, and in ten years, the group plans on turning Guyana into one of the world’s largest oil exporters on a net basis. However, please keep in mind that big projects like these are contending with material mature field declines across Exxon Mobil’s upstream portfolio. Guyana is just part of the puzzle for Exxon Mobil.
Jan 23, 2020
Why Natural Gas Prices are So Low and Will Likely Remain So for Some Time
Image Source: Cabot Oil & Gas Corporation – November 2019 IR Presentation. Domestic natural gas strip prices in the US are trading at rock bottom levels as of this writing, and we expect the pain will only continue. There are many reasons why natural gas prices in the US are quite low right now including surging associated production (gas supplies produced alongside oil, condensate, and natural gas liquids) from unconventional upstream plays where natural gas is viewed more so as a nuisance than a marketable product given the liquids-oriented economics of those plays, surging non-associated production (natural gas supplies are the only product) out of Appalachia over the past decade (the growth in natural gas production in Pennsylvania, Ohio, and West Virginia has been astounding due to the Marcellus and Utica shale plays), and the lack of the kind of serious weather-related demand this winter season (such as a very cold winter in North America, especially in the Midwest and East Coast) that can quickly drain flush storage facilities.
Jan 23, 2020
Resetting Your Mental Model
Image Source: affen ajlfe. Having the right mental model and using the right information can be the reason why you win or lose in investing.
Jan 8, 2020
Update: US and Iran Now De-escalating Tensions
On January 7, Iran retaliated against the US for the killing of Iranian major general Qasem Soleimani (leader of a group that the US has deemed a terror threat under the Trump administration) less than a week earlier by firing missiles from Iranian soil at bases in Iraq that contain US, Iraqi, and coalition troops. The Iranian government aggressively publicized the attack by providing Iranian media outlets with footage of missiles leaving Iran that were targeted towards Iraq. Fortunately, no US, Iraqi, or coalition casualties were reported. We are very thankful that nobody was hurt as a result of the Iranian missile strike.
Jan 7, 2020
Middle East Tensions on the Rise
Early Friday (Arabian Standard Time) on January 3 (the strike was carried out late Thursday evening Eastern Standard Time), under the orders of President Trump, the US took out major general Qasem Soleimani who was the leader of Iran’s Quds military group within the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (‘IRGC’). Please note the US designated the IRGC as a Foreign Terrorist Organization in April 2019, and that the justification for the strike was due to there being an immediate threat to US lives (namely soldiers and contractors stationed in the Middle East), according to the Pentagon. It’s important to note that the strike occurred on Iraqi soil. The Quds force is known to be Iran’s extraterritorial military outfit, an elite group thought to be deeply involved in ongoing wars in Syria (undergoing a civil war), Yemen (undergoing a civil war), and Iraq (ostensibly fighting the remnants of the ISIS terror group). Qasem Soleimani was in Iraq when the US took him out with an airstrike, along with others such as Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, who was the deputy chief of the Popular Mobilization Units (‘PMF’) which is an umbrella group for various militias active in Iraq that have extensive ties with Iran. Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis was thought to be an adviser of Qasem Soleimani.
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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.