After a red-hot start to 2019, aerospace and defense stocks have traded mostly sideways in recent months. However, one analyst said Thursday it’s time to step in and buy two of the top stocks in the space that agreed to a major merger back in June.
Spigarn also upgraded Raytheon Company (NYSE: RTN) from Neutral to Outperform and raised his price target from $188 to $230.
Spingarn said each of the company’s unique business segments provides long-term value for investors. Credit Suisse has initiated 2019/2020/2021 EPS targets of $8.05/$8.84/$9.92.
Spingarn said P&W’s installed base of engines is positioned to grow “substantially” over the next 10 years. Collins Aerospace has also secured significant content in most new commercial aircraft launched in the past 15 years. Finally, Spingarn said Carrier’s bull case is “re energized” after its recent product refresh cycle.
When it comes to Raytheon, Spingarn said the market doesn’t seem to fully appreciate the company’s 43.% ownership stake of the combined company. Spingarn said Raytheon's pristine balance sheet will be a major help to the combined company.
“This is a significant positive in the context of the pending merger with UTX’s aerospace businesses, as it pairs RTN’s clean balance sheet with UTX Aero’s relatively higher leverage (~2.7x net-debt/FY20 EBITDA),” he wrote in a note.
As a result, Spingarn said the combined company should be able to commit the majority of its free cash flow to shareholders rather than using it to pay down debt.
Raytheon and United shares are both reasonably valued and pay decent dividends, and neither stock has gained much ground since the merger announcement back in June. If the combined company can demonstrate it can achieve attractive synergies following the approved merger, shares of the new company could get a significant valuation boost.
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|Sep 2019||Downgrades||Outperform||Market Perform|
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