Best Stocks Below Their Graham Number - April 2018

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Includes: AFL, BAC, BBBY, IVZ, LNC, NWL, PFG, SFNC, SIG, T
by: Benjamin Clark
Summary

All of these companies are rated as suitable for the Defensive Investor and/or the Enterprising Investor following the ModernGraham approach.

They are also found to be significantly undervalued according to the ModernGraham valuation model.

The companies all are trading below their Graham Number.

One popular approach to investing based on Benjamin Graham's methods is to use the so-called "Graham Number." There are some important differences between the Graham Number and the Graham Formula, but using the Graham Number is definitely useful even if the investor only uses it as a screening tactic.

I've selected the best companies reviewed by ModernGraham which trade below their Graham Number. The companies selected all are found suitable for the Defensive Investor and/or the Enterprising Investor, and have been valued as undervalued based on the ModernGraham valuation model. The full list can be found in the latest issue of my monthly Stocks & Screens report; however, to cut down on the length of the post, I've selected the ten which trade furthest below their Graham Number.

Defensive Investors are defined as investors who are not able or willing to do substantial research into individual investments, and therefore need to select only the companies that present the least amount of risk. Enterprising Investors, on the other hand, are able to do substantial research and can select companies that present a moderate (though still low) amount of risk. Each company suitable for the Defensive Investor is also suitable for Enterprising Investors.

These companies have demonstrated strong financial positions through passing the rigorous requirements of the ModernGraham Investor and show potential for capital growth based on their current price in relation to intrinsic value. As such, these graham number stocks may be a great investment if they prove to be suitable for your portfolio after your own additional research.

Lincoln National Corporation (LNC)

Lincoln National Corporation is suitable for the Enterprising Investor but not the more conservative Defensive Investor. The Defensive Investor is concerned with the insufficient earnings stability over the last ten years. The Enterprising Investor has no initial concerns. As a result, all Enterprising Investors following the ModernGraham approach should feel comfortable proceeding with the analysis.

As for a valuation, the company appears to be undervalued after growing its EPSmg (normalized earnings) from $4.25 in 2014 to an estimated $7.21 for 2018. This level of demonstrated earnings growth outpaces the market's implied estimate of 1.03% annual earnings growth over the next 7-10 years. As a result, the ModernGraham valuation model, based on Benjamin Graham's formula, returns an estimate of intrinsic value above the price.

At the time of valuation, further research into Lincoln National Corporation revealed the company was trading below its Graham Number of $121.79. The company pays a dividend of $0.87 per share, for a yield of 1.1% Its PEmg (price over earnings per share - ModernGraham) was 10.56, which was below the industry average of 20.16, which by some methods of valuation makes it one of the most undervalued stocks in its industry.

Source: Compiled by author from SEC Filings and price data

Signet Jewelers Ltd. (SIG)

Signet Jewelers Ltd. is suitable for the Enterprising Investor but not the more conservative Defensive Investor. The Defensive Investor is concerned with the insufficient earnings stability or growth over the last ten years, and the poor dividend history. The Enterprising Investor has no initial concerns. As a result, all Enterprising Investors following the ModernGraham approach should feel comfortable proceeding with the analysis.

As for a valuation, the company appears to be undervalued after growing its EPSmg (normalized earnings) from $3.86 in 2014 to an estimated $6.07 for 2018. This level of demonstrated earnings growth outpaces the market's implied estimate of 0.22% annual earnings loss over the next 7-10 years. As a result, the ModernGraham valuation model, based on the Benjamin Graham value investing formula, returns an estimate of intrinsic value above the price.

At the time of valuation, further research into Signet Jewelers Ltd. revealed the company was trading below its Graham Number of $61.99. The company pays a dividend of $1.04 per share, for a yield of 2.1%, putting it among the best dividend paying stocks today. Its PEmg (price over earnings per share - ModernGraham) was 8.06, which was below the industry average of 30.22, which by some methods of valuation makes it one of the most undervalued stocks in its industry. Finally, the company was trading above its Net Current Asset Value (NCAV) of $-3.32.

Source: Compiled by author from SEC Filings and price data

Bed Bath & Beyond Inc. (BBBY)

Bed Bath & Beyond Inc. is suitable for the Enterprising Investor but not the more conservative Defensive Investor. The Defensive Investor is concerned with the low current ratio, poor dividend history. The Enterprising Investor has no initial concerns. As a result, all Enterprising Investors following the ModernGraham approach should feel comfortable proceeding with the analysis.

As for a valuation, the company appears to be undervalued after "growing" its EPSmg (normalized earnings) from $4.19 in 2014 to an estimated $4.19 for 2018. This level of earnings growth (even though the earnings didn't actually grow) outpaces the market's implied estimate of 1.57% annual earnings loss over the next 7-10 years. As a result, the ModernGraham valuation model, based on the Benjamin Graham value investing formula, returns an estimate of intrinsic value above the price.

At the time of valuation, further research into Bed Bath & Beyond Inc. revealed the company was trading below its Graham Number of $34.59. The company pays a dividend of $0.38 per share, for a yield of 1.7% Its PEmg (price over earnings per share - ModernGraham) was 5.36, which was below the industry average of 35.42, which by some methods of valuation makes it one of the most undervalued stocks in its industry. Finally, the company was trading above its Net Current Asset Value (NCAV) of $-3.6.

Source: Compiled by author from SEC Filings and price data

Newell Brands Inc. (NWL)

Newell Brands Inc. qualifies for both the Defensive Investor and the Enterprising Investor. The Defensive Investor is only initially concerned with the low current ratio. The Enterprising Investor has concerns regarding the level of debt relative to the current assets. As a result, all value investors following the ModernGraham approach should feel comfortable proceeding with the analysis.

As for a valuation, the company appears to be undervalued after growing its EPSmg (normalized earnings) from $1.28 in 2014 to an estimated $2.89 for 2018. This level of demonstrated earnings growth outpaces the market's implied estimate of 0.48% annual earnings growth over the next 7-10 years. As a result, the ModernGraham valuation model, based on the Benjamin Graham value investing formula, returns an estimate of intrinsic value above the price.

At the time of valuation, further research into Newell Brands Inc. revealed the company was trading below its Graham Number of $41.25. The company pays a dividend of $0.88 per share, for a yield of 3.2%, putting it among the best dividend paying stocks today. Its PEmg (price over earnings per share - ModernGraham) was 9.46, which was below the industry average of 20.37, which by some methods of valuation makes it one of the most undervalued stocks in its industry. Finally, the company was trading above its Net Current Asset Value (NCAV) of $-26.44.

Source: Compiled by author from SEC Filings and price data

Invesco Ltd. (IVZ)

Invesco Ltd. qualifies for both the Defensive Investor and the Enterprising Investor. The Defensive Investor is only initially concerned with the low current ratio. The Enterprising Investor has concerns regarding the level of debt relative to the current assets. As a result, all value investors following the ModernGraham approach should feel comfortable proceeding with the analysis.

As for a valuation, the company appears to be undervalued after growing its EPSmg (normalized earnings) from $1.89 in 2014 to an estimated $2.63 for 2018. This level of demonstrated earnings growth outpaces the market's implied estimate of 1.87% annual earnings growth over the next 7-10 years. As a result, the ModernGraham valuation model, based on the Benjamin Graham value investing formula, returns an estimate of intrinsic value above the price.

At the time of valuation, further research into Invesco Ltd. revealed the company was trading below its Graham Number of $38.6. The company pays a dividend of $1.15 per share, for a yield of 3.6%, putting it among the best dividend paying stocks today. Its PEmg (price over earnings per share - ModernGraham) was 12.24, which was below the industry average of 21.55, which by some methods of valuation makes it one of the most undervalued stocks in its industry. Finally, the company was trading above its Net Current Asset Value (NCAV) of $-14.2.

Source: Compiled by author from SEC Filings and price data

Principal Financial Group Inc. (PFG)

Principal Financial Group Inc. qualifies for both the Defensive Investor and the Enterprising Investor. In fact, the company meets all of the requirements of both investor types, a rare accomplishment indicative of the company's strong financial position. The Enterprising Investor has no initial concerns. As a result, all value investors following the ModernGraham approach should feel comfortable proceeding with the analysis.

As for a valuation, the company appears to be undervalued after growing its EPSmg (normalized earnings) from $2.9 in 2014 to an estimated $5.62 for 2018. This level of demonstrated earnings growth outpaces the market's implied estimate of 1.21% annual earnings growth over the next 7-10 years. As a result, the ModernGraham valuation model, based on Benjamin Graham's formula, returns an estimate of intrinsic value above the price.

At the time of valuation, further research into Principal Financial Group Inc. revealed the company was trading below its Graham Number of $74.18. The company pays a dividend of $1.87 per share, for a yield of 3%, putting it among the best dividend paying stocks today. Its PEmg (price over earnings per share - ModernGraham) was 10.92, which was below the industry average of 20.16, which by some methods of valuation makes it one of the most undervalued stocks in its industry.

Source: Compiled by author from SEC Filings and price data

Simmons First National Corporation (SFNC)

Simmons First National Corporation qualifies for both the Defensive Investor and the Enterprising Investor. In fact, the company meets all of the requirements of both investor types, a rare accomplishment indicative of the company's strong financial position. The Enterprising Investor has no initial concerns. As a result, all value investors following the ModernGraham approach should feel comfortable proceeding with the analysis.

As for a valuation, the company appears to be undervalued after growing its EPSmg (normalized earnings) from $0.87 in 2014 to an estimated $1.67 for 2018. This level of demonstrated earnings growth outpaces the market's implied estimate of 4.86% annual earnings growth over the next 7-10 years. As a result, the ModernGraham valuation model, based on Benjamin Graham's formula, returns an estimate of intrinsic value above the price.

At the time of valuation, further research into Simmons First National Corporation revealed the company was trading below its Graham Number of $34.09. The company pays a dividend of $0.5 per share, for a yield of 1.6% Its PEmg (price over earnings per share - ModernGraham) was 18.22, which was below the industry average of 24.17, which by some methods of valuation makes it one of the most undervalued stocks in its industry.

Source: Compiled by author from SEC Filings and price data

Bank of America Corp. (BAC)

Bank of America Corp is suitable for the Enterprising Investor but not the more conservative Defensive Investor. The Defensive Investor is concerned with the insufficient earnings stability or growth over the last ten years. The Enterprising Investor has no initial concerns. As a result, all Enterprising Investors following the ModernGraham approach should feel comfortable proceeding with the analysis.

As for a valuation, the company appears to be undervalued after growing its EPSmg (normalized earnings) from $0.41 in 2014 to an estimated $1.72 for 2018. This level of demonstrated earnings growth outpaces the market's implied estimate of 4.31% annual earnings growth over the next 7-10 years. As a result, the ModernGraham valuation model, based on Benjamin Graham's formula, returns an estimate of intrinsic value above the price.

At the time of valuation, further research into Bank of America Corp revealed the company was trading below its Graham Number of $35.85. The company pays a dividend of $0.39 per share, for a yield of 1.3% Its PEmg (price over earnings per share - ModernGraham) was 17.12, which was below the industry average of 24.17, which by some methods of valuation makes it one of the most undervalued stocks in its industry.

Source: Compiled by author from SEC Filings and price data

AFLAC Incorporated (AFL)

AFLAC Incorporated qualifies for both the Defensive Investor and the Enterprising Investor. In fact, the company meets all of the requirements of both investor types, a rare accomplishment indicative of the company's strong financial position. The Enterprising Investor has no initial concerns. As a result, all value investors following the ModernGraham approach should feel comfortable proceeding with the analysis.

As for a valuation, the company appears to be undervalued after growing its EPSmg (normalized earnings) from $6.07 in 2014 to an estimated $8.08 for 2018. This level of demonstrated earnings growth outpaces the market's implied estimate of 1.21% annual earnings growth over the next 7-10 years. As a result, the ModernGraham valuation model, based on Benjamin Graham's formula, returns an estimate of intrinsic value above the price.

At the time of valuation, further research into AFLAC Incorporated revealed the company was trading below its Graham Number of $103.31. The company pays a dividend of $1.74 per share, for a yield of 2% Its PEmg (price over earnings per share - ModernGraham) was 10.92, which was below the industry average of 22.76, which by some methods of valuation makes it one of the most undervalued stocks in its industry.

Source: Compiled by author from SEC Filings and price data

AT&T Inc. (T)

AT&T Inc. qualifies for both the Defensive Investor and the Enterprising Investor. The Defensive Investor is only initially concerned with the low current ratio. The Enterprising Investor has concerns regarding the level of debt relative to the current assets. As a result, all value investors following the ModernGraham approach should feel comfortable proceeding with the analysis.

As for a valuation, the company appears to be undervalued after growing its EPSmg (normalized earnings) from $1.89 in 2014 to an estimated $3.17 for 2018. This level of demonstrated earnings growth outpaces the market's implied estimate of 1.36% annual earnings growth over the next 7-10 years. As a result, the ModernGraham valuation model, based on the Benjamin Graham value investing formula, returns an estimate of intrinsic value above the price.

At the time of valuation, further research into AT&T Inc. revealed the company was trading below its Graham Number of $41.02. The company pays a dividend of $1.97 per share, for a yield of 5.5%, putting it among the best dividend paying stocks today. Its PEmg (price over earnings per share - ModernGraham) was 11.23, which was below the industry average of 41.47, which by some methods of valuation makes it one of the most undervalued stocks in its industry. Finally, the company was trading above its Net Current Asset Value (NCAV) of $-36.26.

Source: Compiled by author from SEC Filings and price data

Disclosure: I am/we are long IVZ. I wrote this article myself, and it expresses my own opinions. I am not receiving compensation for it. I have no business relationship with any company whose stock is mentioned in this article.

Additional disclosure: See a list of my current holdings on ModernGraham.com. This article is not investment advice; any reader should speak to a registered investment adviser prior to making any investment decisions. ModernGraham is not affiliated with the company in any manner. Please be sure to review our detailed disclaimer on ModernGraham.com.