One Liberty Properties Inc is a US$515m small-cap, real estate investment trust (REIT) based in Great Neck, United States. REITs are basically a portfolio of income-producing real estate investments, which are owned and operated by management of that trust company. They have to meet certain requirements in order to become a REIT, meaning they should be analyzed a different way. Below, I’ll look at a few important metrics to keep in mind as part of your research on OLP.
REIT investors should be familiar with the term Fund from Operations (FFO) – a REIT’s main source of cash flow from its day-to-day business activities. FFO is a higher quality measure of earnings because it takes out the impact of non-recurring sales and non-cash items such as depreciation. These items can distort the bottom line and not necessarily reflective of OLP’s daily operations. For OLP, its FFO of US$45m makes up 68% of its gross profit, which means the majority of its earnings are high-quality and recurring.
OLP’s financial stability can be gauged by seeing how much its FFO generated each year can cover its total amount of debt. The higher the coverage, the less risky OLP is, broadly speaking, to have debt on its books. The metric I’ll be using, FFO-to-debt, also estimates the time it will take for the company to repay its debt with its FFO. With a ratio of 11%, the credit rating agency Standard & Poor would consider this as aggressive risk. This would take OLP 9.05 years to pay off using just operating income, which is a long time, and risk increases with time. But realistically, companies have many levers to pull in order to pay back their debt, beyond operating income alone.
I also look at OLP’s interest coverage ratio, which demonstrates how many times its earnings can cover its yearly interest expense. This is similar to the concept above, but looks at the upcoming obligations. The ratio is typically calculated using EBIT, but for a REIT stock, it’s better to use FFO divided by net interest. With an interest coverage ratio of 2.37x, OLP is not generating an appropriate amount of cash from its borrowings. Typically, a ratio of greater than 3x is seen as safe.
In terms of valuing OLP, FFO can also be used as a form of relative valuation. Instead of the P/E ratio, P/FFO is used instead, which is very common for REIT stocks. In OLP’s case its P/FFO is 11.59x, compared to the long-term industry average of 16.5x, meaning that it is undervalued.
In this article, I’ve taken a look at Funds from Operations using various metrics, but it is certainly not sufficient to derive an investment decision based on this value alone. One Liberty Properties can bring about diversification for your portfolio, but before you decide to invest, take a look at the other aspects you must consider before investing:
- Future Outlook: What are well-informed industry analysts predicting for OLP’s future growth? Take a look at our free research report of analyst consensus for OLP’s outlook.
- Valuation: What is OLP worth today? Is the stock undervalued, even when its growth outlook is factored into its intrinsic value? The intrinsic value infographic in our free research report helps visualize whether OLP is currently mispriced by the market.
- Other High-Performing Stocks: Are there other stocks that provide better prospects with proven track records? Explore our free list of these great stocks here.
To help readers see past the short term volatility of the financial market, we aim to bring you a long-term focused research analysis purely driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis does not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements.
The author is an independent contributor and at the time of publication had no position in the stocks mentioned. For errors that warrant correction please contact the editor at email@example.com.