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Are Investors Undervaluing HCA Holdings (HCA) Right Now?

Zacks Equity Research
Tree.com (TREE) reported earnings 30 days ago. What's next for the stock? We take a look at earnings estimates for some clues.

While the proven Zacks Rank places an emphasis on earnings estimates and estimate revisions to find strong stocks, we also know that investors tend to develop their own individual strategies. With this in mind, we are always looking at value, growth, and momentum trends to discover great companies.

Looking at the history of these trends, perhaps none is more beloved than value investing. This strategy simply looks to identify companies that are being undervalued by the broader market. Value investors use tried-and-true metrics and fundamental analysis to find companies that they believe are undervalued at their current share price levels.

Luckily, Zacks has developed its own Style Scores system in an effort to find stocks with specific traits. Value investors will be interested in the system's "Value" category. Stocks with both "A" grades in the Value category and high Zacks Ranks are among the strongest value stocks on the market right now.

HCA Holdings (HCA) is a stock many investors are watching right now. HCA is currently holding a Zacks Rank of #2 (Buy) and a Value grade of A. The stock is trading with P/E ratio of 13.12 right now. For comparison, its industry sports an average P/E of 13.32. Over the past 52 weeks, HCA's Forward P/E has been as high as 14.55 and as low as 10.65, with a median of 12.18.

Investors will also notice that HCA has a PEG ratio of 1.08. This popular figure is similar to the widely-used P/E ratio, but the PEG ratio also considers a company's expected EPS growth rate. HCA's industry currently sports an average PEG of 1.14. Within the past year, HCA's PEG has been as high as 1.32 and as low as 0.90, with a median of 1.02.

These are only a few of the key metrics included in HCA Holdings's strong Value grade, but they help show that the stock is likely undervalued right now. When factoring in the strength of its earnings outlook, HCA looks like an impressive value stock at the moment.


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