Corning, Schlumberger: Value investors favorites
These stocks rank highly based on Ben Graham's long-term value investing criteria.
By J. Royden ward, Cabot Benjamin Graham Value Letter
Can the stock market keep going? Betting the S&P will rise a tad more to breach the old high is not certain, but odds favor the bulls.
According to Ned Davis Research, since 1928, after the S&P Index made a new high following a bear market, it rose an average additional 18% over a period of more than a year. I advise rotating into my new recommended undervalued stocks such as Corning (GLW) and Schlumberger (SLB).
Founded in 1851, with headquarters in Corning, New York, Corning evolved from an old-line housewares company to a leading maker of liquid crystal display (LCD) panels, fiber optics and emission control equipment.
Corning is operating in several leading growth sectors: making glass for flat-screen TVs, smartphones, tablet computers and other electronic devices; manufacturing fiber optic equipment used by the telecommunications industry; and developing pollution control products to meet new emission standards.
After two years of declining profits, Corning is poised to increase sales and earnings. I expect sales to increase 6% and earnings per share to climb 14% during the next 12 months ending March 31, 2014.
New products, such as Gorilla Glass, an extra strong and clear glass, and ultra-thin Willow glass could easily push sales and earnings higher than expected.
Fourth-quarter Gorilla Glass sales soared 68%. The innovative glass can now be found in one billion handheld and electronic devices worldwide.
GLW shares sell at a 14% discount to book value, sport a low current P/E of 10.4, and provide a dividend yield of 2.9%. The company's balance sheet is very strong with $4.15 per share in cash and low debt.
GLW's stock price will likely reach my minimum sell price target of $24.40 within two years. GLW is medium risk because the company's sales and earnings are volatile.
Schlumberger is the world's leading supplier of technology, integrated project management and information solutions to the oil and natural gas industry around the globe.
It provides the industry's widest range of products and services from the beginning of exploration through final production for customers in 85 countries.
Advanced technology has become increasingly important as existing oilfields mature and new oilfields are developed in harsh environments and challenging geological conditions.
Schlumberger's purchase of WesternGeco in 2006 has enabled the company to become a leader in the highly technical reservoir seismic services and management field.
Sales and earnings growth slowed during the third and fourth quarters of 2012. Solid international growth was offset by seasonal slowdowns, contract delays and new project start-up costs.
Growth will accelerate during the next 12 months, though. I expect sales to rise 11% and earnings per share to climb 17%. The large increase in the number of drilling rigs worldwide will require many of Schlumberger's products and services.
SLB sells at 15.7 times my earnings per share forecast of 4.87 for next the 12-month period ending March 31, 2014 with a dividend yield of 1.6%. Buy SLB at $78.42 or below and sell when SLB reaches $118.15 within two years.
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