Jeremy Johnson, CFA

Whirlpool: Expected Shareholder Returns Appear Low, Bonds Offer Relative Value

Summary

Whirlpool (NYSE:WHR) in a multinational manufacturer of large home appliances. In recent years, starting with the onset of the financial crisis, unit and revenue trends at the company have been challenging with some pockets of strength, notably in Latin America. The company earns returns at about the cost of capital driven by some attractive industry characteristics balanced by a high level of industry rivalry and buyers motivated to find the best deal. With Whirlpool's shares trading near $104, the long-term expected return to equity holders will be around 4% per year in real (inflation-adjusted) terms, in my view. Some risks to the long-term growth potential of the firm and the industry as a whole exist. High grade...

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