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.
Considering these trends, value investing is clearly one of the most preferred ways to find strong stocks in any type of market. Value investors rely on traditional forms of analysis on key valuation metrics to find stocks that they believe are undervalued, leaving room for profits.
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.
One company to watch right now is Popular (BPOP). BPOP is currently sporting a Zacks Rank of #2 (Buy), as well as a Value grade of A. The stock is trading with a P/E ratio of 7.47, which compares to its industry's average of 10.63. Over the past year, BPOP's Forward P/E has been as high as 9.80 and as low as 7.40, with a median of 8.71.
Investors should also recognize that BPOP has a P/B ratio of 0.89. The P/B ratio is used to compare a stock's market value with its book value, which is defined as total assets minus total liabilities. This company's current P/B looks solid when compared to its industry's average P/B of 1.45. Within the past 52 weeks, BPOP's P/B has been as high as 1.11 and as low as 0.88, with a median of 0.99.
Value investors also frequently use the P/S ratio. This metric is found by dividing a stock's price with the company's revenue. Some people prefer this metric because sales are harder to manipulate on an income statement. This means it could be a truer performance indicator. BPOP has a P/S ratio of 1.81. This compares to its industry's average P/S of 2.79.
Finally, investors should note that BPOP has a P/CF ratio of 10.13. This metric focuses on a firm's operating cash flow and is often used to find stocks that are undervalued based on the strength of their cash outlook. BPOP's current P/CF looks attractive when compared to its industry's average P/CF of 11.05. Over the past year, BPOP's P/CF has been as high as 16.69 and as low as 8, with a median of 10.11.
These are only a few of the key metrics included in Popular'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, BPOP looks like an impressive value stock at the moment.
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