With a huge rally and then another sell-off continuing to add volatility into the markets, it may be time to make some shifts in strategy. While the rally was heartening, the retrace Wednesday is a reminder that history tells us there could be another leg down to test the lows. If that is indeed the case, then a move from momentum and aggressive growth to value may make sense.
In a recent report, Jefferies scanned its universe for top value picks for institutional and high net worth clients to buy. While not all the companies may look like traditional value companies, either the recent market volatility, or other issues have put them in that territory. Here are three outstanding selections to buy now.
This top health care provider is down an incredible 17% from highs posted in June. Aetna Inc. (NYSE: AET) is one of the nation’s leading diversified health care benefits companies, serving an estimated 44 million people while offering a broad range of traditional, voluntary and consumer-directed health insurance products and related services, including medical, pharmacy, dental, behavioral health, group life and disability plans, and medical management capabilities.
The Jefferies team thinks current price levels make the stock a very compelling opportunity. Trading at a low 14.5 times standalone 2015 estimates, that multiple puts it into the low end of the peer group. With the company in the process of completing a gigantic $34.1 billion purchase of Humana, the analysts feel that standalone estimates for this year and 2016 could prove to be conservative.
Aetna investors are paid a small 0.85% dividend. The Jefferies price objective for the stock is $135. The Thomson/First Call consensus price target is $139.80. Shares closed Wednesday at $117.23.
Royal Dutch Shell
This company has survived the plunge in oil pricing plunge as good or better than any other major integrated stock. Royal Dutch Shell PLC (NYSE: RDS-A) operates as an independent oil and gas company worldwide. It explores for and extracts crude oil, natural gas and natural gas liquids. It also converts natural gas to liquids to provide fuels and other products. Shell won a significant victory this year in its ongoing $3 billion fight with India’s revenue authorities, in a judgment with implications for dozens of tax disputes involving multinational companies in Asia’s third-largest economy. Any lift in the energy market next year could make this a top stock to own.
The Jefferies team points out that the company has been in the “penalty box” since the BG acquisition and is dirt cheap to their peers at current levels. Others have noted that although the market for asset sales is difficult, the company completed over $2 billion in asset sales over the past year, and it is also chopping the company’s capex. Those are both avenues that the Jefferies team sees adding tremendous value.
Royal Dutch Shell investors are paid a huge 6.29 % dividend. The Jefferies price target is $66.70, and the consensus target for the euro oil giant was not posted. Shares closed Wednesday at $50.14.
This company has a diversified mix of business and posted solid second-quarter numbers. Raytheon Corp. (NYSE: RTN) is an industry leader in defense, government electronics, space, information technology and technical services. The company is not only likely to benefit from domestic defense purchasing, but the company has posted large contract sales to the Saudi’s over the past two years.
Last year Raytheon purchased privately held cybersecurity company Blackbird Technologies for about $420 million. The acquisition will help expand its surveillance and cybersecurity services to clients. Raytheon provides state-of-the-art electronics, mission systems integration and other capabilities in the areas of sensing, effects, and command, control, communications and intelligence systems, as well as cybersecurity and a broad range of mission support services.
Raytheon investors are paid a 2.52% dividend. The Jefferies price target is $120, and the consensus target is $119. The shares closed Wednesday at $106.08.
All three of these companies are perfect for long-term growth and value portfolios. They pay dividends, are growing their businesses both organically and through acquisitions, and are returning capital to shareholders. These total return value stocks make good sense in a volatile market.
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