2 Retail Names With Higher Prices Ahead

We’ve seen a better start to the year for the major market averages, with the S&P 500 (SPY) up over 3% year-to-date and the Nasdaq Composite enjoying an even more impressive 4.5% return.

While some of these gains could be whittled away if we see a disappointing CPI report with higher-than-expected inflation, this is certainly a welcome departure from last year’s mess, with both indexes down over 20% for the first time since 2008.

Unfortunately, not all stocks have participated, and one sector that continues to remain in the doghouse from a sentiment standpoint is the Retail Sector.

Within the sector, the restaurant group has outperformed on hopes of peak inflation and improving demand (lower gas prices), but other retail brands like Chico’s FAS (CHS), with the stock being one of the worst performers year-to-date.

While this is partially attributed to the company’s softer holiday sales numbers, the sell-off is starting to look overdone, and a lot looks priced in here, with the stock trading at a mid-single-digit PE ratio.

Meanwhile, within the restaurant space, Wingstop (WING) may be an outperformer but it is positioned to continue its outperformance with aggressive unit growth and deflation in its core commodity (bone-in chicken wings).

This allowed it to price less aggressively than peers and capture market share despite a challenging backdrop where traffic growth has been elusive, especially while gas prices are hovering above $4.00/gallon.

Let’s take a closer look at both names below:

Wingstop (WING)

Wingstop (WING) began as a small buffalo-style chicken wing restaurant in Texas and has since grown to 1,800+ restaurants, with more than 95% of its system being franchised.

Since going public, the company has outperformed nearly all other restaurant stocks with a 640% return in just seven years. Continue reading "2 Retail Names With Higher Prices Ahead"

2 Retail Stocks Ready for a Santa Claus Rally

The Federal Reserve met broad expectations by reducing its interest rate hike to 50 bps this month. However, its emphasis on taming inflation further by raising interest rates in the foreseeable future has dampened the optimism that had kept markets buoyant in the run-up to yesterday’s announcement.

However, in the run-up to year-end festivities, consumer spending is also set to increase, thereby adding more wind to the sails of businesses that have been under pressure by aggressive interest rate hikes and other macroeconomic headwinds for a greater part of the year.

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Hence, it could be wise to buy The TJX Companies, Inc. (TJX) and Five Below, Inc. (FIVE) to capitalize on increased consumer spending during the holidays. These stocks show strong trends.

The TJX Companies, Inc. (TJX)

TJX is an off-price apparel and home fashion retailer in the United States and internationally. The company’s operating segments are Marmaxx; HomeGoods; TJX Canada; and TJX International.

TJX’s revenue has exhibited a 6.6% CAGR over the past three years. During the same time horizon, the company’s EBITDA and net income have also grown at 2% and 2.8% CAGRs, respectively.

During the nine months of the fiscal year ended October 29, 2022, TJX’s net sales increased 2.1% year-over-year to $35.42 billion. During the same period, the company’s net income increased 5% and 8.3% year-over-year to $2.46 billion and $2.08, respectively.

Analysts expect TJX’s revenue and EPS for fiscal 2023 to increase 2% and 9.3% year-over-year to $49.51 billion and $3.12, respectively. The company has surpassed consensus EPS estimates in three of the trailing four quarters.

Owing to its strong performance and solid growth prospects, TJX is currently commanding a premium valuation compared to its peers. In terms of forward P/E, TJX is currently trading at 25.41x compared to the industry average of 12.88x. Also, its forward EV/EBITDA multiple of 17.26 is higher than the industry average of 9.15. Continue reading "2 Retail Stocks Ready for a Santa Claus Rally"