GE, Microsoft on New Low List

 |  Includes: GE, MSFT, YHOO
by: Chad Brand

In addition to Verizon (NYSE:VZ), mentioned in my last post, there continue to be attractively valued large cap stocks hitting new lows in the latest market drop. Both of these names sell for about 13 times this year's earnings and 12 times next year's estimates. Pretty cheap valuations for both of them.

General Electric (NYSE:GE) ~$30


Fortunately for those who have owned the stock for a while, the days of investors paying 30 or 40 times earnings for this industrial conglomerate are over. With a far more reasonable valuation at hand, investors can actually get some value out of GE shares.

Due to the company's high exposure to financial services (it lent money to many big ticket customers to aid in financing equipment purchases), GE stunned analysts by missing first quarter earnings estimates and ratcheting down its outlook for the full year. As a result, GE shares made new lows under $30 per share, yield a dividend of over 4%, and now trade at a discount to the overall market.

GE followers are used to the stock fetching a premium to the market, but value investors finally have an intriguing market bellwether to consider adding to their portfolios.
Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) ~$27

The Yahoo (NASDAQ:YHOO) hangover seems like it will never end, but it will at some point this year. Before the Yahoo offer was made, MSFT's business was clicking on all cylinders and the shares had reached the mid thirties. We can argue whether getting Yahoo would boost MSFT's financials or not, but even if we assume no incremental benefit one way or the other, it is hard to make the case that MSFT shares are only worth 27 bucks.

Either way, a move back into the thirties is likely. While it would happen pretty quickly if Yahoo finally decided to remain independent and the end of the saga finally arrived, even a MSFT/YHOO combination would likely result in a higher stock price in the intermediate term, as Yahoo has little bargaining power to extract an excessive purchase price above the $33-$34 offered previously.

Full Disclosure: Peridot clients are long shares of the companies mentioned at the time of writing.