A company can see a stock price rise or fall and remain undervalued, because the intrinsic value of the company is not related to the price at which it trades. Rather, the value of a company results from solid fundamentals. Benjamin Graham taught investors to analyze the company's financial statements to determine an intrinsic value for the company, then compare the price to the value. This is best done by utilizing a systematic approach to analysis that will provide investors with a sense of how a specific company compares to another investment opportunity. By using the ModernGraham method one can review a company's historical accomplishments and determine an intrinsic value that can be compared across industries. What follows is a specific look at how Chevron Corporation fares in the ModernGraham valuation model.
CVX data by YCharts
Defensive Investor - must pass at least 6 of the following 7 tests: Score = 6/7
- Adequate Size of Enterprise - market capitalization of at least $2 billion - PASS
- Sufficiently Strong Financial Condition - current ratio greater than 2 - FAIL
- Earnings Stability - positive earnings per share for at least 10 straight years - PASS
- Dividend Record - has paid a dividend for at least 10 straight years - PASS
- Earnings Growth - earnings per share has increased by at least 1/3 over the last 10 years using 3 year averages at beginning and end of period - PASS
- Moderate PEmg ratio - PEmg is less than 20 - PASS
- Moderate Price to Assets - PB ratio is less than 2.5 or PB x PEmg is less than 50 - PASS
Enterprising Investor - must pass at least 4 of the following 5 tests or be suitable for a defensive investor: Score = 4/5
- Sufficiently Strong Financial Condition, Part 1 - current ratio greater than 1.5 - PASS
- Sufficiently Strong Financial Condition, Part 2 - Debt to Net Current Assets ratio less than 1.1 - FAIL
- Earnings Stability - positive earnings per share for at least 5 years - PASS
- Dividend Record - currently pays a dividend - PASS
- Earnings growth - EPSmg greater than 5 years ago - PASS
|Value Based on 3% Growth||$167.90|
|Value Based on 0% Growth||$98.42|
|Market Implied Growth Rate||0.68%|
|Net Current Asset Value (NCAV)||-$28.42|
Balance Sheet - 12/31/2013
Earnings Per Share
Earnings Per Share - ModernGraham
CVX Dividend data by YCharts
Chevron Corporation remains suitable for either the Defensive Investor or the Enterprising Investor. The Defensive Investor's only issue with the company is the low current ratio, and the Enterprising Investor's only issue is the high level of debt relative to the company's current assets. The company passes every other requirement of the two investor types. As a result, value investors seeking to follow the ModernGraham approach based on Benjamin Graham's methods should feel comfortable proceeding with further research, including a review of ModernGraham's valuation of Exxon Mobil (NYSE:XOM), and ModernGraham's valuation of ConocoPhillips (NYSE:COP).
From a valuation side of things, the company has grown its EPSmg (normalized earnings) from $8.09 in 2009 to $11.58 for 2013. This is a solid level of growth that outpaces the market's implied estimate of earnings growth of 0.68%, and the ModernGraham valuation model accordingly returns an estimate of intrinsic value that surpasses the market price by more than our margin of safety. Therefore, the company appears to be undervalued presently.
The next part of the analysis is up to individual investors, and requires discussion of the company's prospects. What do you think? What value would you put on Chevron Corporation? Where do you see the company going in the future? Is there a company you like better?
Disclosure: The author did not hold a position in Chevron Corporation (NYSE:CVX) or any other company mentioned in this article at the time of publication and had no intention of changing that position within the next 72 hours.