|STOCKS FOR 2007
||[Jan. 11th, 2007|12:09 pm]
Constant Vigilance in Financial Affairs
Yesterday, as a guest on Fast Money, Jim Crammer recommended Sears at a good stock. |
Here are some others I heard are good for 2007:
Atrion (ATRI) Has done good job building shareholder value. Should end 2007 with no debt and $6 a share in earnings. So at current prices you are paying a multiple of 13 times earnings -- puny for a company growing at better than 15% annually. With a market capitalization (shares outstanding times the stock price) of just $145 million, the share price is apt to be volatile.
CompuCredit (CCRT) The company focuses on the subprime lending market, issuing credit cards, auto loans, and small "payday" advances to people without the best creditworthiness. CompuCredit is a smart operator in a tough business. "Earnings growth and profitability have been strong -- and figure to stay that way," but "CompuCredit's stock trades at an extremely low valuation" -- just eight times the $4.60 in earnings per share that's expected in 2007.
Emcor Group (EME), which designs, operates and maintains sophisticated electrical and mechanical systems for factories, utilities and office buildings. The stock is pricey, but growth is impressive, with profits expected to rise by one-third in 2007.
Johnson & Johnson (JNJ), maker of drugs, medical devices and consumer health products. Although the business could be under the gun of a Democratic Congress, shares trade at a modest valuation of 16 times expected 2007 earnings, with a dividend that's rising at a consistent, double-digit rate.
Lockheed Martin (LMT), the aerospace company. Its stock has doubled since early 2004 but still trades at a price-earnings ratio of 16, based on estimated 2007 earnings. Plus, its volatility is well below the market as a whole.
Meredith (MDP), publisher of Better Homes & Gardens and other magazines and owner of 14 television stations. At a time when traditional media are out of favor, Meredith has been increasing its profits at a rapid pace. Nevertheless, it carries a modest valuation.
Ntelos (NTLS). It sells wireless phone and Internet service to customers in Virginia and West Virginia. Also, Ntelos sells wholesale wireless service to Sprint and, it should benefit as Sprint moves its newly acquired Nextel customers to the CDMA technology that Ntelos provides. A big attraction of the stock, is that it's cheap compared with similar businesses. Why? The company, founded in 1897, is "still not very well known." That's what we like in a stock: market inefficiency.
SkyWest (SKYW), a regional airline that, in the words of the Friess newsletter, Looking Forward, "receives payment [from Delta and United] for each completed departure rather than on a percentage-of-revenue basis, minimizing the effects of load factors and fuel price hikes." Considering its rate of profit growth, the stock trades at a low valuation of nine times expected 2007 profits.
ConocoPhillips (COP), which has been rearranging its portfolio in a way that appears perspicacious. For example, Conoco's purchase of Burlington Resources in March 2006 made it the largest natural-gas producer in North America -- a smart move in a tight market. Based on expected 2007 earnings, shares trade at a P/E of just 8 and yield 2.1%.
Universal Forest Products (UFPI) makes wood and plastic building products, such as roof trusses, for the construction and do-it-yourself sectors. With the decline in the housing market, the stock skidded 40% between May and December. It is, however, a selection of one favorite analyst, Cleveland-based Elliott Schlang, of Great Lakes Review, who focuses on midwestern stocks in boring industries. He likes companies with heavy insider ownership, strong cash flow and solid balance sheets. Universal meets the criteria and, trading at a P/E of 12 based on estimated 2007 earnings, it looks awfully cheap.