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Tuesday, 4 November 2008
Expeditors International of Washington (EXPD) "Trading Transparency"

Hello Friends!  Thanks so much for stopping by and visiting my blog, Stock Picks Bob's Advice!  As always, please remember that I am an amateur investor, so please remember to consult with your professional investment advisers prior to making any investment decisions based on information on this website.

Earlier today I sold my shares of Graham (GHM) on a plunge in the stock price below my purchase price on what appeared to be a reasonably good earnings report.  I suppose with the rise in the price of oil and this earnings report, the stock reacted to the news.  It doesn't matter to me.  My sale is based on the price performance of my holding and not my own expectations of the future prospects.  

Dipping below my minimum of 5 positions generated a 'buy signal' for me to replace it with a position of reduced size (1/2 of the average size of the remaining positions.)  I have initiated purchases based on sales on good news to be sized at the average of the remaining holdings.

Looking through the lists of top % gainers on the NASDAQ today, I came across Expeditors (EXPD) and felt it would fit well into my own portfolio.

Let me share with you briefly why I made this decision and decided to purchase 45 shares of EXPD at $40.19.  As I write, EXPD is trading at $38.68, a bit below my own purchase, trading up $6.68 or 20.88% on the day.

First of all, what drove the stock higher today was the announcement of 3rd quarter 2008 results.  Earnings came in at $85.6 million during the 3rd quarter, up from $74.3 million during the same period last year.  Diluted earnings per share worked out to $.39/share this year, up from $.34/share last year.  The company reported "same-store" results, with same store net revenue climbing 11%, and same store operating income climbing 13% year-over-year.  Revenue for the quarter came in at $1.56 billion, up from $1.41 billion last year.

The company exceeded expectations on earnings and apparently met expectations on revenue results.  Analysts had been looking for $.37/share (the company beat this by $.02).

Longer-term, if we check the Morningstar.com "5-Yr Restated" financials on EXPD, we can see that revenue has been steadily increasing with $2.6 billion in sales in 2003, climbing to $5.2 billion in 2007 and $5.6 billion in the trailing twelve months (TTM).

Earnings have also steadily increased from $.46/share in 2003 to $1.21/share in 2007 and $1.28/share in the TTM.

The company pays a dividend and has been increasing the dividend annually from $.08/share in 2003 to $.30 share in the TTM.

Outstanding shares have been very stable with 216 million shares in 2003, increasing only to 221 million in the TTM.

Free cash flow has been positive and growing from $176 million in 2005 to $243 million in the TTM.

The balance sheet appears solid with $703 million in cash and $1.04 billion in other current assets.  This yields a current ratio of 2.0.  The company reports only $95 million of long-term liabilities.

Looking at some valuation numbers, we can see that this is a large cap stock with a market cap of $8.22 billion according to Yahoo "Key Statistics".

The trailing p/e is 30.27 with a forward p/e (fye 31-Dec-09) of 25.43.  The PEG (5 yr expected) works out to an acceptable 1.51.

Yahoo reports 213 million shares outstanding with 209 million that float.  9.18 million shares are out short representing a short ratio of 2.2 days.  The company, as noted, pays a dividend with a forward yield of 1.0%.  The last stock split was a 2:1 split back on June 26, 2006.

And the chart?

If we examine a 'point & figure' chart on EXPD from StockCharts.com, we can see that the stock has been relatively weak since peaking at $54 in August, 2007, and has traded as low as $25 in October, 2008.  The stock has recently broken through resistance at the $36 level, and short-term appears to be a bullish chart.

To summarize, with my sale of Graham (GHM) putting me under 5 positions, my own strategy requires a minimum of 5 holdings in my portfolio (with my own maximum of 20 positions).  I set out to find a new holding starting with the top % gainers lists.  Expeditors was performing well today, and a closer look reveals a terrific earnings report, a longer-term record and financial fundamentals quite impressive, and a less than impressive chart.

But it was enough to get me to bite and nibble away I went.

Thanks again for stopping by and visiting!  If you have any comments or questions, please feel free to leave them on the blog or email me at bobsadviceforstocks@lycos.com.

Yours in investing,

 

Bob

 


Posted by bobsadviceforstocks at 1:10 PM CST | Post Comment | Permalink

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