One thing that weak markets and sell-offs can provide to investors with some dry powder is outstanding companies that have traded substantially lower on little if any bad news. A new research note from Jefferies offers what they consider to be “compelling value” stock opportunities for investors to consider now.
The three stocks that the Jefferies team has pinpointed in the research are top companies that have been hit hard and have either made management changes or the sector they reside in may be ready to turn. All three are rated Buy.
This is one of many top companies based in Ireland. Ingersoll-Rand PLC (NYSE: IR) is a top industrial stock to Buy at Jefferies, and with the housing market continuing to grow, the company’s wide range of portfolio products should continue to sell well. Many on Wall Street also see the stock as a good play on the replacement, upgrade and, ultimately, growth in the commercial and residential air conditioning markets. Trends in these markets have been highly correlated with overall commercial construction and are thus earlier in the cycle.
Ingersoll Rand has an outstanding portfolio of global brands and holds leading market share in all major product lines. The geographic and industrial diversity coupled with a large installed product base provides solid growth opportunities for the company within service, spare parts and replacement revenue streams. The Jefferies team points out that the stock has underperformed the S&P 500 by 14% since the end of the second quarter.
Ingersoll-Rand investors are paid a 2.11% dividend. The Jefferies price target for the stock is $78, and the Thomson/First Call consensus target is $70.85. Shares closed on Tuesday at $56.48.
The Fresh Market
This is one of the smaller natural food retailers, and the Jefferies team is very positive on the change at the CEO level. The Fresh Market Inc. (NASDAQ: TFM) is a specialty grocery retailer focused on providing high-quality products in a unique and inviting atmosphere with a high level of customer service. As of September 1, 2015, it operates 176 stores in 27 states across the United States. The company often picks smaller market areas to stay away from Whole Foods competition.
Veteran food retail executive Richard Anicetti was named as the company’s president and chief executive officer, effective September 1, 2015. He served for eight years as president and CEO of Food Lion grocery stores, a subsidiary of Delhaize Group. The Jefferies analysts applaud the hire and believe that the stock has dropped in price more than enough to make it a very solid buy at current levels. While they think that the CEO’s actions such as new pricing and advertising could cut into 2016 earnings, they see solid EBITDA growth returning by 2017.
The Jefferies price target is set at $29, and the consensus target is $27.45. Shares closed Tuesday at $24.24. The stock is down over 40% since April.
This company, along with other top media companies, has been crushed over fears of consumers “cutting the cord” or leaving cable and satellite programming. Viacom Inc. (NASDAQ: VIAB) creates television programs, motion pictures, short-form video, applications, games, consumer products, social media, and other entertainment content. Its Media Networks segment provides entertainment content and related branded products through approximately 230 programmed and operated TV channels, including MTV, VH1, CMT, Logo, BET, Nickelodeon, Nick at Nite, Comedy Central, TV Land and SPIKE, as well as through online, mobile and apps.
Earlier in the summer, the company delighted shareholders with a very rich 21% dividend increase. Viacom has continued to reward shareholders and enhance its brands worldwide through the creation and acquisition of popular programs, new channels successful motion pictures, and other forms of entertainment, including video game offerings. The Jefferies team thinks that ratings are turning the corner and point to the massive 41% discount the company trades in relation to its peers, which is much larger than the historical 24% discount.
Viacom investors are paid a solid 3.65% dividend. The Jefferies price target is $60, and the consensus target is in line at $60.84. The stock closed Tuesday at $44.42.
These three stocks offer investors outstanding entry points into companies with well-established franchises. In a still pricey market, they make good sense for aggressive growth accounts.
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