Dollar General: Breakout bargain?
The discount retailer has caught the attention of bargain-oriented shoppers and investors alike.
With the economy weak, Dollar General (DG) has potential to benefit from increased sales as people look for bargains.
Based in Tennessee, the company operates 8,414 stores in 35 states selling housewares at low prices; it has annual revenue of $13.7 billion.
The stock came public in late 2009 trading at $22 and has climbed steadily the past two years. It recently broke out from a nine-week flat base and hit a new all-time high. Shares were up less than 1% Thursday to $40.98.
The stock, a defensive play, has weathered the bear market well. It is now in a strong up trend and the recent move to a new high could bring in more buying from the new-high trading crowd.
Technically, the base is ideal -- tight and above a rising 50-day moving average line. The momentum indicator has been mostly bullish for 4-months. The accumulation - distribution line is working higher and has given no hint of unusual selling pressure, but instead strong buying.
Net for the upcoming fiscal fourth quarter ending Jan. 31 should jump 262% to 81 cents a share from 64 cents a year ago. The highest estimate on the Street is at 83 cents a share. We see chances for a modest upside earnings surprise. The prior two quarters the company topped the consensus estimate by two to four cents a share.
For the fiscal year ending Jan. 30, analysts are forecasting a 25% gain in earnings to $2.31 a share from the $1.85 a share a year ago. The stock sells with a price-earnings ratio of 16, which is reasonable. Analysts have been lifting their estimates.
Net for fiscal 2013 should rise 16% to $2.68 a share from the anticipated $2.31 in fiscal 2012.
We are targeting DG for a move to $50 within the next few months. A protective stop can be placed near $37 giving it room.
Copyright © 2014 Microsoft. All rights reserved.
Fundamental company data and historical chart data provided by Morningstar Inc. Real-time index quotes and delayed quotes supplied by Morningstar Inc. Quotes delayed by up to 15 minutes, except where indicated otherwise. Fund summary, fund performance and dividend data provided by Morningstar Inc. Analyst recommendations provided by Zacks Investment Research. StockScouter data provided by Verus Analytics. IPO data provided by Hoover's Inc. Index membership data provided by Morningstar Inc.
Investors are anxious to see if hiring can maintain its strong pace in the second half of the year.
VIDEO ON MSN MONEY
Top Stocks provides analysis about the most noteworthy stocks in the market each day, combining some of the best content from around the MSN Money site and the rest of the Web.
Contributors include professional investors and journalists affiliated with MSN Money.
Follow us on Twitter @topstocksmsn.