Jefferies Consumer Retail Stocks to Buy: Buy American!

June 4, 2013 by Jon C. Ogg

American flag
Source: Thinkstock
The retail research team at Jefferies feels that despite the income and payroll tax changes that began in January, U.S. households may be in a much better position to weather the tax than some thought at first. While core retail sales have been resilient if flat over the past six months, rising house and stock prices have reduced the need for further household deleveraging. The bottom line is that the consumer discretionary sector fits their theme of owning domestically focused revenue-generating stocks.

Here are the top consumer discretionary stocks to buy at Jefferies.

Deckers Outdoor Corp. (NASDAQ: DECK) has absolutely bludgeoned short-sellers over the years. Trading at less than 16 times earnings and growing fast with top products, one can see why. Jefferies has a $100 price target on the stock. The Thomson/First Call estimate is $61. This is a huge call, which if correct represents an 85% gain from current levels.

The Gap Inc. (NYSE: GPS) makes the Jefferies stocks to buy list. The iconic retailer offers apparel, accessories and personal care products for men, women, children and babies under the Gap, Old Navy, Banana Republic, Piperlime, Athleta and Intermix brands. The majority of its sales and revenue come from the first three stores listed. Jefferies has a $56 price target, and the consensus is at $45. Investors are paid a 1.50% dividend.

Aeropostale Inc. (NYSE: ARO) desperation to stay relevant has been apparent in its increased promotions, but neither its lower prices or fashions have generated higher sales with younger consumers. Jefferies is a believer and has a $20 price target, while the consensus for the stock is at $15.

Michael Kors Holdings Ltd. (NYSE: KORS) is often regarded as the hottest fashion growth stock in the market today, and for good reason. Ever since its public debut in December 2011, the Hong Kong-based company has made a habit of posting triple-digit profit growth on top of double-digit sales gains. Jefferies has an $80 price objective, and the consensus estimate is at $74.50.

Fossil Inc. (NASDAQ: FOSL) is famous for its trendy watches. The company also engages in the design, development, marketing and distribution of consumer fashion accessories worldwide. It operates in four segments: North America Wholesale, Europe Wholesale, Asia Pacific Wholesale and Direct to Consumer. Jefferies has posted a $130 target on the stock, while the consensus is at $115.

Abercrombie & Fitch Co. (NYSE: ANF) also targets the teen consumer and has struggled. The company’s management team is hoping to reduce on promotions and to increase on high margin sales. This means selling products at full retail rather than at a discount. This could spell danger if the economy goes soft. Jefferies has a $60 target. The consensus comes in at $57. Investors are paid a 1.60% dividend.

Tumi Holdings Inc. (NYSE: TUMI) wraps up the top consumer discretionary stocks to buy at Jefferies. The company offers wheeled travel products and soft styles without wheels, including satchels, garment bags, boarding totes and cross-body bags, as well as business cases consisting of soft business cases, wheeled business cases, backpacks, messenger bags, day bags, and totes. Jefferies has a $29 price objective, while the consensus comes in lower at $27.

It should be clear to readers that Jefferies is not only bullish on these stocks, but bullish on the U.S. economy as a whole. The consumer discretionary sector has performed well over the past 12 months. It will take continued economic growth for these stocks to continue to outperform. With that in mind, given the current situation in the world, betting on the United States may not be that bad of an idea.