Written by Bob Ciura for Sure Dividend
There is arguably no firm extra desirous to see 2018 come to an in depth than delivery big FedEx Corp. (FDX). It has merely been a horrible 12 months for the stock. Shares of FedEx, at the moment at $158 per share, are off 43% from the 52-week excessive, and at the moment are down 37% for the 12 months.
Most of the decline has to do with fears of slowing world financial development, in addition to commerce worries. Sentiment was dealt one other blow when FedEx reduce its earnings steering for the fiscal 12 months. However, the corporate nonetheless expects development general, because it continues to learn from the e-commerce increase.
Rather than succumb to the panic, traders ought to view FedEx’s drop in share worth this 12 months as a shopping for alternative. FedEx shares supply each worth and development, a uncommon mixture. Not solely is the stock low-cost on a valuation foundation, FedEx is on the checklist of Dividend Achievers having raised its dividend every year for over 10 years in a row. FedEx stock is likely one of the S&P’s greatest bargains for 2019.
Overview of Recent Events
FedEx Corp. is a transportation and delivery firm. It is likely one of the two trade giants within the U.S., together with shut competitor UPS. FedEx was based in 1971, and immediately has a market capitalization of $64.7 billion. The firm presents quite a lot of companies together with transportation, e-commerce, and enterprise companies. It operates 5 core segments: FedEx Express, TNT Express, FedEx Ground, FedEx Freight, and FedEx Services. FedEx gives home and worldwide delivery for package deal supply, freight, each air and floor. It additionally gives gross sales, advertising and marketing, info know-how, communications, customer support, technical help, billing and assortment companies.
One of probably the most engaging points of the enterprise, from an investor’s perspective, is that the corporate has a decent grip atop an trade that basically acts as a duopoly. It is just about unimaginable for a smaller competitor to construct a transport community giant sufficient to take market share from FedEx. In reality, FedEx Ground has elevated its market share for 19 years in a row. Therefore, even Amazon as a critical competitor appears far-fetched, given FedEx’s huge scale.Source: Roadshow Presentation
On December 19th FedEx reported monetary outcomes for its fiscal 2019 second quarter. Revenue of $17.8 billion rose 9.2% from the identical quarter final 12 months, and beat analyst expectations by $50 million. Adjusted earnings-per-share of $4.03 beat expectations by $0.09 per share, and elevated 27% 12 months-over-12 months. Despite the robust efficiency final quarter, FedEx shares declined 10% the morning of the earnings launch because of the firm’s vital steering reduce for the complete fiscal 12 months. For fiscal 2019, FedEx now expects adjusted earnings-per-share of $15.50 to $16.60, versus prior steering of $17.20 to $17.80. The firm blamed slowing financial development in varied components of the world, in addition to the affect of escalating commerce tensions.
Growth Potential Remains Intact
In our view, an excessive amount of attention is being paid to FedEx lowering earnings steering for fiscal 2019. Yes, it was a large discount. But the corporate ought to nonetheless have loads of alternatives for future development, on the present valuation the market appears to be ignoring FedEx’s development potential. FedEx has elevated earnings-per-share at a really excessive price within the years because the Great Recession. As a world transportation firm, FedEx is an financial “bellwether”, a time period used to explain an organization that advantages from world financial development (and vice versa).
FedEx’s excessive earnings development is because of the e-commerce increase. Consumers are doing a a lot greater portion of their buying on-line, which requires delivery companies.Source: Roadshow Presentation
In addition to rising delivery volumes, FedEx has a singular means to lift costs. Pricing energy is a bonus of investing in trade-main corporations. Since FedEx’s companies are obligatory for thus many customers and companies, it might move alongside common worth will increase to drive income development, with out sacrificing volumes. Effective January 2019, FedEx Express and FedEx Ground shall be rising delivery charges by a median of 4.9%, whereas FedEx Freight shall be rising charges a median of 5.9%.
FedEx’s decreased earnings steering is a doable sign of a world financial slowdown, however over the long run we nonetheless count on 8% annualized earnings development, which can be overly conservative given the corporate’s wonderful observe report. Despite the steep discount in fiscal 2019 steering, the corporate nonetheless expects adjusted earnings development of 4.8% on the midpoint of steering. The market is clearly dissatisfied with FedEx’s efficiency this 12 months, however on the present valuation, FedEx is being priced like a no-development firm or worse.
Attractive Valuation & Dividend Growth
After the large promote-off in FedEx shares, the stock has a really low valuation. FedEx stock trades for a comparatively modest valuation, significantly because the firm has an extended historical past of producing excessive earnings development. Based on fiscal 2019 anticipated earnings of $16.05 per share on the midpoint of steering, FedEx stock at the moment trades for a worth-to-earnings ratio of simply 9.7; that is effectively under the 10-year common worth-to-earnings ratio of 16.7.
It may very well be fairly argued that FedEx stock shouldn’t commerce on the 10-year common, since this era included the financial restoration after the Great Recession. An surroundings of slowing world development within the years forward would doubtless lead to a decrease common valuation for FedEx stock. Still, we view a worth-to-earnings ratio of 14 as completely affordable for a extremely worthwhile, trade-main firm with constructive development expectations. Even a modest valuation of 14 occasions EPS would yield vital returns. If it takes 5 years to succeed in the truthful worth worth-to-earnings ratio of 14, the corresponding a number of enlargement might increase annual returns by 7.6%.
Of course, earnings development and dividends will even contribute to shareholder returns. As talked about beforehand, we count on 8% annual earnings development over the subsequent 5 years. In addition, FedEx has a 1.6% dividend yield. While it is a under-common yield within the context of the broader S&P 500 Index, which yields 2% proper now, FedEx’s dividend yield is at a 10+ 12 months excessive.
FedEx will not be a excessive-yielder, however as an alternative it’s a excessive dividend development stock. It elevated its dividend by 30% in 2018. Even with a close to-time period world financial slowdown, FedEx ought to not less than obtain 10% annual dividend development over full financial cycles. Based on the present dividend payout of $2.60 per share, FedEx is projected to have a dividend payout ratio of 16.2% for fiscal 2019. This is a really low payout ratio that leaves loads of room for robust dividend will increase.
Therefore, the mix of 8% earnings development, a 7.6% tailwind from valuation enlargement, and the 1.6% present dividend yield add as much as whole anticipated returns of over 17% per 12 months.
During market downturns, even excessive-high quality shares usually are not immune. FedEx has been swept up within the broader fears of slowing world financial development, tariffs, and commerce tensions. It is true that 2018 is prone to be a weaker 12 months than FedEx and its traders are used to, however plainly the promote-off is overdone. When the market is gripped by worry, traders are inclined to throw the baby out with the bathwater. FedEx is a extremely worthwhile firm, with a constructive development outlook. The valuation has compressed a lot that FedEx stock seems to be a cut price heading into 2019.
Disclosure: I’m/we’re lengthy FDX. I wrote this text myself, and it expresses my very own opinions. I’m not receiving compensation for it (apart from from Seeking Alpha). I’ve no enterprise relationship with any firm whose stock is talked about on this article.