If it seems like value investing is dead, it is because it almost is. Even major adherents have moved away from the practice as growth stocks have greatly outperformed value stocks for so long. The growth sector has been led by large tech companies for the last several years, and many are wondering whether the gains can keep going. The answer, according to Credit Suisse, is “yes”. The bank has put out a piece reminding investors that in late stage bull markets growth stocks can often hit P/E multiples of 45-60x. The sector is currently only trading at 28x earnings. Credit Suisse singled out Microsoft and Raytheon as good cheap picks.
FINSUM: The optimism has been building in markets, so it would not be far-fetched to think a big late cycle run could be in the cards for growth stocks.
Value stocks have been in the doldrums forever. Growth stocks have been outcompeting for many years. One way to get some good performance is to stay away from value stocks as a whole, and instead focus on individual names. Here are some stocks that look cheap and have positive catalysts in the cards (from Bernstein Research): Hewlett Packard, Apple, Tyson Foods, UnitedHealth Group, Cigna, Anthem, Nielsen Holdings, Delta Airlines, and United Airlines.
FINSUM: Apple as a value stock seems rather questionable but we get the “mispriced because of how great its earnings are” logic. The airlines seem an interesting bet to us.
The economy has been in a rough patch for about a year, with major economies and emerging markets all slowing. But things may be poised to turn around. Markets have gotten very excited about the prospect for an upturn after the IMF said it expects 2020 to be better than 2019. One economist from Macquarie summarized sentiment this way, saying “As 2019 draws to a close, the market is pricing in economic recovery, with equities in the US hitting new highs and long yields well off the recent lows”. Global trade is now stabilizing, which begs the question as to whether the economy has already weathered the worst of the storm.
FINSUM: When it comes to the economy, things are very hard to forecast, but on balance the situation is looking better than worse.
New US GDP data has been released and it is not good news. Though, it is isn’t exactly terrible either. US third quarter growth was 1.9%, the lowest level of 2019. The fall in pace was caused by a reduction in business investment. The pace of growth was 2.0% in the second quarter. The 1.9% rate actually exceeded estimates of 1.6% despite still being the weakest result of the year.
FINSUM: So the big question here is how the Fed will react to this news. They have generally had a glass-half-full approach, so this may keep them from proceeding with cuts, but we’d bet they undertake one more “insurance” cut.