U.S. Markets open in 7 hrs 11 mins

Is Atlas Air Worldwide (AAWW) Stock a Suitable Value Pick?

Zacks Equity Research

Value investing is easily one of the most popular ways to find great stocks in any market environment. After all, who wouldn’t want to find stocks that are either flying under the radar and are compelling buys, or offer up tantalizing discounts when compared to fair value?

One way to find these companies is by looking at several key metrics and financial ratios, many of which are crucial in the value stock selection process. Let’s put Atlas Air Worldwide Holdings, Inc. AAWW stock into this equation and find out if it is a good choice for value-oriented investors right now, or if investors subscribing to this methodology should look elsewhere for top picks:

PE Ratio

A key metric that value investors always look at is the Price to Earnings Ratio, or PE for short. This shows us how much investors are willing to pay for each dollar of earnings in a given stock, and is easily one of the most popular financial ratios in the world. The best use of the PE ratio is to compare the stock’s current PE ratio with: a) where this ratio has been in the past; b) how it compares to the average for the industry/sector; and c) how it compares to the market as a whole.

On this front, Atlas Air Worldwide has a trailing twelve months PE ratio of 5.67, as you can see in the chart below:




This level actually compares pretty favorably with the market at large, as the PE for the S&P 500 stands at about 18.13. If we focus on the long-term PE trend, Atlas Air Worldwide’s current PE level puts it below its midpoint over the past five years. Moreover, the current level is fairly below the highs for this stock, suggesting it might be a good entry point.




Further, the stock’s PE also compares favorably with the industry’s trailing twelve months PE ratio, which stands at 12.53. At the very least, this indicates that the stock is relatively undervalued right now, compared to its peers.




We should also point out that Atlas Air Worldwide has a forward PE ratio (price relative to this year’s earnings) of just 5.59, so it is fair to say that a slightly more value-oriented path may be ahead for Atlas Air Worldwide stock in the near term too.

P/S Ratio

Another key metric to note is the Price/Sales ratio. This approach compares a given stock’s price to its total sales, where a lower reading is generally considered better. Some people like this metric more than other value-focused ones because it looks at sales, something that is far harder to manipulate with accounting tricks than earnings.

Right now, Atlas Air Worldwide has a P/S ratio of about 0.39. This is significantly lower than the S&P 500 average, which comes in at 3.28 right now. Also, as we can see in the chart below, this is well below the highs for this stock in particular over the past few years.




If anything, AAWW is in the lower end of its range in the time period from a P/S metric, suggesting some level of undervalued trading—at least compared to historical norms.

Broad Value Outlook

In aggregate, Atlas Air Worldwide currently has a Zacks Value Style Score of A, putting it into the top 20% of all stocks we cover from this look. This makes Atlas Air Worldwide a solid choice for value investors, and some of its other key metrics make this pretty clear too.

For example, its P/CF ratio (another great indicator of value) comes in at 2.27, which is far better than the industry average of 5.84. Clearly, AAWW is a solid choice on the value front from multiple angles.

What About the Stock Overall?

Though Atlas Air Worldwide might be a good choice for value investors, there are plenty of other factors to consider before investing in this name. In particular, it is worth noting that the company has a Growth grade of B and a Momentum score of C. This gives AAWW a Zacks VGM score—or its overarching fundamental grade—of A. (You can read more about the Zacks Style Scores here >>)

Meanwhile, the company’s recent earnings estimates have been mostly trending lower. The current quarter has seen no estimates go higher in the past sixty days compared to three lower, while the full year estimate has seen one upward and four downward revisions in the same time period.

As a result, the current quarter consensus estimate has fallen by 60.7% in the past two months, while the full year estimate has decreased 1.3%. You can see the consensus estimate trend and recent price action for the stock in the chart below:

Atlas Air Worldwide Holdings Price and Consensus
 

Atlas Air Worldwide Holdings Price and Consensus

Atlas Air Worldwide Holdings price-consensus-chart | Atlas Air Worldwide Holdings Quote

This negative trend is why the stock has just a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold) despite strong value metrics and why we are looking for in-line performance from the company in the near term.

Bottom Line

Atlas Air Worldwide is an inspired choice for value investors, as it is hard to beat its incredible lineup of statistics on this front. However, with a sluggish industry rank (among the bottom 14%) and a Zacks Rank #3, it is hard to get too excited about this company overall. In fact, over the past two years, the industry has clearly underperformed the broader market, as you can see below:




So, value investors might want to wait for estimates, analyst sentiment and broader factors to turn around in this name first, but once that happens, this stock could be a compelling pick.

Today's Best Stocks from Zacks

Would you like to see the updated picks from our best market-beating strategies? From 2017 through 2018, while the S&P 500 gained +15.8%, five of our screens returned +38.0%, +61.3%, +61.6%, +68.1%, and +98.3%.

This outperformance has not just been a recent phenomenon. From 2000 – 2018, while the S&P averaged +4.8% per year, our top strategies averaged up to +56.2% per year.

See their latest picks free >>


Want the latest recommendations from Zacks Investment Research? Today, you can download 7 Best Stocks for the Next 30 Days. Click to get this free report
 
Atlas Air Worldwide Holdings (AAWW) : Free Stock Analysis Report
 
To read this article on Zacks.com click here.
 
Zacks Investment Research