AMC Appreciates 30% - Further Upside?

I recently profiled AMC Entertainment Holdings Inc. (AMC) as a compelling buy in the backdrop of a record-setting year at the box office, a robust slate of movies for 2018 and 2019, a strong consumer, dividend yield of over 4% and accelerating revenue and EPS growth. AMC was trading near $14.50 or nearly 30% below its 52-week high in July. AMC is reengaging the consumer via digital, mobile and loyalty program options, reformatting theaters to enhance the user experience and international expansion augmented by a healthy share buyback program. After coming off record first quarter numbers in June across all categories, the stock looked very attractive considering its depressed valuation, industry strength forecasted through the remainder of 2018 and through 2019 coupled with a slew of company initiatives to drive the consumer experience. Sure enough, AMC has been on the rise and reported its Q2 earnings in August. AMC posted robust growth with record admission and food and beverage revenue increasing ~18% and 19%, respectively while overall revenue increased 20% year-over-year. Since July, AMC has broken out from ~$14.50 to ~$19.50 for a ~30% appreciation in stock value. AMC remains compelling despite this recent appreciation on any significant pullback since the long-term growth narrative remains intact while revenue continues to grow at a double-digit clip.

AMC’s Accelerating Revenue and EPS – Q2 Earnings

AMC has a mix of improving fundamentals across the entire enterprise which were highlighted during its latest earnings announcement for Q2 2018. AMC set second quarter records for all revenue categories: admissions, food and beverage and other. Total revenues increased 20% to $1,442.5 million compared to total revenues of $1,202.3 million during the same period last year. Admissions revenues increased 17.7% while food and beverage revenues increased 19.2%. Net earnings increased $198.7 million to net earnings of $22.2 million compared to net loss of $176.5 million for the three months ended June 30, 2017. Continue reading "AMC Appreciates 30% - Further Upside?"

Disney Continues Path via Future Growth Initiatives

Disney’s Growth and Future Initiatives

Disney delivered solid Q3 FY2018 quarterly results as the company continues to be focused on future initiatives such as acquiring Twenty-First Century Fox assets and a major push into streaming with a majority stake in Hulu (60% ownership), ESPN Plus launch earlier this year and direct to consumer Disney branded streaming service coming in 2019. Disney’s Q3 revenue and EPS grew by 7.3% and 18%, respectively year-over-year. Disney continues to deliver at the box office, and theme parks and its stock has finally broken out above the $110 level and appears to be consolidating above this level. Disney’s brands are ubiquitous and providing long-lasting, durable revenue streams that transcend theme parks, toys, merchandise, movie franchises, streaming initiatives, Fox properties and international reach. Disney is closing the gap in streaming as Hulu grows rapidly and in the backdrop, ESPN+ and direct to consumer Disney branded streaming service matures and comes to fruition. Disney currently trades at a P/E of 14.1 while the average stock in the S&P 500 trades at 24.9 representing a 40% discount to the average stock. Disney has been growing its dividend over the years and currently yields 1.5% to bolster Disney’s investment thesis further. Disney offers a compelling long-term investment opportunity considering the growth, Fox acquisition, pipeline, Media Networks remediation plan, diversity of its portfolio, tax reform, share repurchase program (on suspension) and dividend growth. Continue reading "Disney Continues Path via Future Growth Initiatives"

Inexpensive Stocks: Pharmaceutical Supply Chain Cohort

The entire pharmaceutical supply chain cohort, specifically, McKesson (MCK), Cardinal Health (CAH), CVS Health (CVS) and Walgreens Boots Alliance (WBA) are all near multi-year lows despite still posting growth albeit slow with healthy balance sheets and growing dividends. This cohort has been faced with several headwinds that have negatively impacted the growth, and the changing marketplace conditions have plagued these stocks. The political backdrop has been a major headwind for the entire pharmaceutical supply chain including drug manufacturers, pharmaceutical wholesalers, and pharmacies/pharmacy benefit managers. Compounding the political climate, the drug pricing debate continues to rage on throughout political and social media circles weighing on the overarching sector. This backdrop erodes the pricing power of drugs that ultimately move from drug manufacturers to patients with insurers and other middlemen playing roles in the supply chain web.

In an effort to address these headwinds and restore growth, companies within this cohort have made bold moves such as CVS acquiring Aetna (AET) to form a colossus bumper-to-bumper healthcare company. Cardinal Health shelled out $6.1 billion to acquire Medtronic's Patient Care, Deep Vein Thrombosis, and Nutritional Insufficiency business. McKesson has made a string of acquisitions over the past two years deploying $1.2 billion for Biologics, $2.1 billion for Rexall and $525 million for Vantage Oncology in 2016. This was followed by a $1.1 billion acquisition of CoverMyMeds, undisclosed acquisition costs for RxCrossroads and Well.ca in 2017. Thus far in 2018, McKesson acquired Medical Specialty Distributors. Continue reading "Inexpensive Stocks: Pharmaceutical Supply Chain Cohort"

Facebook - $119 Billion Disastrous Conference Call

Facebook’s (FB) fundamentals were shining bright and outweighed its data misuse scandal from months’ prior leading into its Q2 earnings. In the wake of mishandling user data, Facebook’s stock tumbled from $195 to $152 or 22%. Facebook was well off those data misuse induced sell-off lows and marched right through its previous 52-week high and broke out to $219 for a nice ~44% rebound. This scenario ended abruptly on the heels of its Q2 earnings which came in shy of analysts’ expectations on the revenue front. Facebook also issued a major guide down in growth for the next few quarters tampering growth expectations in the near term. Facebook is facing a challenging confluence of slowing revenue growth, margin compression and stagnant daily active users in the near to intermediate term. Facebook’s CFO stated that investors could expect "revenue growth rates to decline by high single-digit percentages from prior quarters." Despite these headwinds, Facebook is still posting accelerating revenue growth across all geographies, expanding market penetration with Instagram’s IGTV, Facebook’s Stories and monetization efforts in Messenger and WhatsApp. Factoring in this high single digit decrease in revenue, Facebook is still poised to grow at a double-digit clip with the most recent growth rate coming in at 42% in Q2. The long-term picture looks bright for Facebook, and the recent sell-off is a good opportunity to initiate a long position as the company contends with and addresses all the issues across its platforms. Facebook remains a premier large-cap growth stock and inexpensive relative to other large-cap growth stocks in its cohort.

Disastrous Conference Call

Well, that was a disaster of a conference call. Facebook posted the largest one-day loss in market value by any company in stock market history. Facebook shed $119 billion worth of market capitalization after dropping ~20%. No other company has ever lost greater than $100 billion in market value in a single day (Figure 1). To add insult to injury, this was also Facebook’s worst day ever on the stock market. This sell-off came on the heels of a minor Q2 advertising revenue miss of $13.04 billion versus expectations of $13.16 billion and lower than expected daily active users in Europe. Key metrics suffered from data misuse and fake news issues within its platform. Continue reading "Facebook - $119 Billion Disastrous Conference Call"