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Stock Picks Bob's Advice
Wednesday, 4 February 2004
February 4, 2004 Hain Celestial Group (HAIN)
How's this one to spice up your portfolio! The Hain Celestial Group, Inc. (HAIN), according to the money.cnn.com "snapshot" is "...a natural, specialty and snack food company, selling, marketing and distributing a range of natural foods, cooking oils, medically directed snacks and specialty and herb teas." I do not own any of these shares directly, but as a matter of fact my stock club does have a few shares that we purchased a few months ago.

HAIN had a great day today in the face of a LOUSY market. (I am close to hitting my 8% stop on CREE, a high tech firm that was a recent purchase....maybe we will get a rebound tomorrow?) Hain closed at $22.55 up $1.38 or 6.52% on the day.

Guess What? You won't believe it (jk), but what drove HAIN up in price today on the heels of a LOUSY market...was a GREAT earnings report. HAIN released today, before the opening, the second quarter results. For the second quarter ended December 31, 2003, HAIN reported it earned $10.4 million or $.29/share up from $8.19 milion or $.24/share a year ago. These earnings were actually a MISS by a penny based on a survey of 10 analysts...but I guess this news, along with the news of a soon to be introduced array of low-carb products, was enough to light up the fuse of ATKINS-crazy investors! Revenue for the quarter rose 16% to $142.8 million from $123 million a year ago...but again this was "below Wall Street's mean estimate of $148.6 million."

Looking at Morningstar.com "5-yr restated" financials we find that revenue has been growing very steadily from $315.8 million in 1999 to $497.1 million in the trailing twelve months. Earnings/share have been erratic with $.51 reported in 1999, dropping to a loss of $(.41)/share in 2000, back up to $.68 in 2001, down to $.09 in 2002, but increasing since then from $.79 in 2003 to $.84 in the trailing twelve months.

Free cash flow has been positive but again inconsistent with $9 million in 2001, $1 million in 2002, $13 million in 2003, and $8 million in the trailing twelve months.

The balance sheet appears healthy, although not loaded with cash listed at $12.9 million, they do report $154.8 million in other current assets. This is compared to $77 million in current liabilities and $74.1 million in long-term liabilities. Looks o.k. to me!

Looking at "key statistics" on Yahoo.com, we see that the Market Cap is a small $772.0 million with a reasonable trailing p/e of 26.85. Forward p/e (fye 30 Jun 05) is 17.50. The PEG isn't bad at 1.33 (anything close to or under 1.0 is great), and price/sales also reasonable at 1.46. There are 34.2 million shares outstanding with 27.50 million of them that float. As of 1/8/04, there are 1.06 million shares out short, representing 3.87% of the float or 5.917 trading days. (What terrible stuff do these short sellers SEE in this stock?) They may very well be feeling a bit of a squeeze with this stock price rise.

Overall, I like this stock a lot. If I were selling CREE today, which I came close, I would probably be thinking about adding this stock as a position....but you KNOW I have already filled my 25 position portfolio...at least for now...and have LOADS of margin which will truly be a problem if this downdraft continues!

Thanks again for stopping by! If you have any questions, comments, or words of encouragement, please feel free to post them right here or email me at bobsadviceforstocks@lycos.com As always, remember to do your own 'due diligence' and consult with your investment advisors before making any decisions based on information on this BLOG or website!

Bob


Posted by bobsadviceforstocks at 4:16 PM CST | Post Comment | Permalink

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