Hot Undervalued Stocks To Watch Right Now

Talk about a Barron’s bounce!Range Resources (RRC) has soared to the top of the S&P 500 today after Barron’s touted it in the pages of the magazine this weekend.

Agence France-Presse/Getty Images

Range Resources gained 4.1% to $28.47, while the S&P 500 slipped 0.3% to2,375.31.

Barron’s Andrew Bary called Range Resources “an unappreciated energy play.” He explains why:

With major market indexes at record highs, natural-gas stocks are among the few depressed industry groups. Blame a warm winter and weakening gas prices.

Range Resources (ticker: RRC), a leading U.S. gas producer, looks undervalued. Its shares, at $27, are down 20% this year and are much below their 52-week high of $47, set last June. Range drilled the first well in the now-prolific Marcellus region of Pennsylvania more than a decade ago and amassed one of its largest land positions there610,000 acres. Its $4.2 billion purchase of Memorial Resource Development last September gave it access to what the company views as a prolific and underappreciated gas region: northern Louisiana

Hot Undervalued Stocks To Watch Right Now: bebe stores, inc.(BEBE)

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By WWW.THESTREET.COM]

    Just in the past few weeks, Wall Street has seen bankruptcy filings from sporting goods retailer Gander Mountain, RadioShack successor General Wireless Operations, everyday value price department store operator Gordmans Stores (GMAN) and appliances, electronics and furniture retailer HHGregg (HGG) . Last Wednesday, children’s apparel retailer Gymboree cautioned it was running low on cash and may not survive. Sears Holdings Corp. (SHLD) voiced concerns on Tuesday about its ability to stay in business, while women’s apparel chain Bebe (BEBE) is reportedly on the brink of closing all 170 of its stores.

  • [By WWW.THESTREET.COM]

    Not helping matters was a continued drumbeat of retail death stories such as Payless possibly closing 500 stores, Bebe (BEBE) on the verge of shuttering 170 stores and Sears Holdings’  (SHLD) CFO spreading #fakenews in a new blog post that the retailer is a “viable” entity. It’s not, especially after the language it slipped in its new annual report on Tuesday. 

  • [By Lisa Levin] Related HTGM 20 Biggest Mid-Day Losers For Thursday 25 Stocks Moving In Thursday's Pre-Market Session HTG Molecular Diagnostics Obtains CE Mark for its HTG EdgeSeq ALKPlus Assay EU (GuruFocus)
    Related SSH 15 Biggest Mid-Day Gainers For Wednesday 12 Biggest Mid-Day Losers For Tuesday Healthcare – Top 5 Gainers / Losers as of 11:00 am (Seeking Alpha) Gainers
    HTG Molecular Diagnostics Inc (NASDAQ: HTGM) rose 63.6 percent to $3.50 in pre-market trading after the company disclosed that it has obtained CE marking in the EU for HTG EdgeSeq ALKPlus Assay.
    Sunshine Heart Inc (NASDAQ: SSH) rose 20.3 percent to $2.61 in pre-market trading after the company issued a business update regarding execution of its strategic growth plan.
    bebe stores, inc. (NASDAQ: BEBE) shares rose 11.1 percent to $4.29 in pre-market trading after the company disclosed that it is exploring strategic alternatives.
    Cancer Genetics Inc (NASDAQ: CGIX) rose 10.3 percent to $3.20 in pre-market trading after the company posted a narrower-than-expected quarterly loss.
    Five Below Inc (NASDAQ: FIVE) rose 8.8 percent to $41.50 in pre-market trading after the company reported better-than-expected earnings for its fourth quarter.
    FireEye Inc (NASDAQ: FEYE) rose 8 percent to $12.40 in pre-market trading. Goldman Sachs upgraded FireEye from Sell to Buy.
    PVH Corp (NYSE: PVH) shares rose 7.4 percent to $97.60 in pre-market trading after the company posted upbeat earnings for its fourth quarter and issued a strong earnings forecast.
    Bitauto Hldg Ltd (ADR) (NASDAQ: BITA) shares rose 7 percent to $26.00 in pre-market trading after dropping 1.30 percent on Wednesday.
    Pingtan Marine Enterprise Ltd (NASDAQ: PME) rose 6.6 percent to $4.50 in pre-market trading after gaining 0.48 pe
  • [By Lisa Levin]

    bebe stores, inc. (NASDAQ: BEBE) shares dropped 26 percent to $3.86. bebe stores will reportedly license www.bebe.com domain name, social media accts. and international wholesale agreements to one or more third parties, according to Reuters.

Hot Undervalued Stocks To Watch Right Now: Tanger Factory Outlet Centers Inc.(SKT)

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Shauna O’Brien]

    Jefferies announced on Wednesday that it has cut its rating on Tanger Factory Outlet Centers Inc. (SKT).

    The firm has downgraded SKT from “Buy” to “Hold,” and has lowered the company’s price target from $40 to $35. This price target suggests an 8% upside from the stock’s current price of $32.22.

    Analyst Omotayo Okusanya commented: “We expect near-term headwinds for the mall and outlet mall segment as tenant sales growth appears to be slowing.”

    “At SKT, development yields on two projects have also been reduced. Further, rising interest rates negatively impact our DDM-derived PT. Our lowered PT of $35 represents a 10% total return over the next-twelve-months (NTM); we are downgrading to Hold,” added the analyst.

    Tanger Factory Outlet shares were mostly flat during pre-market trading Wednesday. The stock is up more than 5% YTD.

  • [By WWW.THESTREET.COM]

    In the Lightning Round, Cramer was bullish on Palo Alto Networks (PANW) , Cisco Systems (CSCO) , Tanger Factory Outlet Centers (SKT) and Consolidated Edison (ED) .

  • [By Paul Ausick]

    Tanger Factory Outlet Centers Inc. (NYSE: SKT) traded down nearly 10% Wednesday and posted a new 52-week low of $21.14 after closing Tuesday at $23.47. The stock’s 52-week high is $34.76. Volume was around 6.9 million, nearly five times the daily average. The companr reported results after markets closed Tuesday.

Hot Undervalued Stocks To Watch Right Now: Allison Transmission Holdings, Inc.(ALSN)

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Ben Levisohn]

    With a neutral sector rating, we are working on evaluating risks to negative calls, and identifying potential value opportunities. Last week we noted more work might be worthwhile on Wabco Holdings (WBC), Terex, Manitowoc (MTW), and Caterpillar, two of those names have rallied for other reasons but the attractive price made the upside/downside skew up. We remain positive (OW) on Allison Transmission Holdings (ALSN) & United Rentals. Our and consensus 2017Allison Transmission Holdings estimates have fallen by 2% vs. ~15% for the group, while the shares are down 10% since launch. We continue to see United Rentals as the best value in our group…

Hot Undervalued Stocks To Watch Right Now: American Capital Agency Corp.(AGNC)

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Amanda Alix]

    This development will likely give battered mREITs like Annaly Capital (NYSE: NLY  ) , Armour Residential (NYSE: ARR  ) , and American Capital Agency (NASDAQ: AGNC  ) a huge boost as investors begin to feel less panic regarding a tapering of the current QE3 program. Markets have responded to the Summers announcement by soaring skyward, apparently feeling relief and confidence about the fate of the taper.

  • [By Amanda Alix]

    It was just about one year ago that QE3 made its debut, and mortgage REITs, particularly agency-only players like Annaly Capital (NYSE: NLY  ) , Armour Residential (NYSE: ARR  ) , and American Capital Agency (NASDAQ: AGNC  ) began moaning about the increased competition for mortgage-backed securities guaranteed by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

  • [By Boniface Murigu]

    It’s no secret that mREITs such as American Capital Agency (NASDAQ: AGNC  ) (NASDAQ: AGNC  ) (NASDAQ: AGNC  ) , Annaly Capital Management (NYSE: NLY  ) (NYSE: NLY  ) (NYSE: NLY  ) ,and CYS Investmentshave gone through a very turbulent trading period, with all major players losing a sizable share of market value.

Hot Undervalued Stocks To Watch Right Now: PVH Corp.(PVH)

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Demitrios Kalogeropoulos]

    Five Below (NASDAQ:FIVE) and PVH (NYSE:PVH) were two of the biggest individual stock movers following surprises in their latest quarterly earnings reports.

  • [By Lisa Levin] Related HTGM 20 Biggest Mid-Day Losers For Thursday 25 Stocks Moving In Thursday's Pre-Market Session HTG Molecular Diagnostics Obtains CE Mark for its HTG EdgeSeq ALKPlus Assay EU (GuruFocus)
    Related SSH 15 Biggest Mid-Day Gainers For Wednesday 12 Biggest Mid-Day Losers For Tuesday Healthcare – Top 5 Gainers / Losers as of 11:00 am (Seeking Alpha) Gainers
    HTG Molecular Diagnostics Inc (NASDAQ: HTGM) rose 63.6 percent to $3.50 in pre-market trading after the company disclosed that it has obtained CE marking in the EU for HTG EdgeSeq ALKPlus Assay.
    Sunshine Heart Inc (NASDAQ: SSH) rose 20.3 percent to $2.61 in pre-market trading after the company issued a business update regarding execution of its strategic growth plan.
    bebe stores, inc. (NASDAQ: BEBE) shares rose 11.1 percent to $4.29 in pre-market trading after the company disclosed that it is exploring strategic alternatives.
    Cancer Genetics Inc (NASDAQ: CGIX) rose 10.3 percent to $3.20 in pre-market trading after the company posted a narrower-than-expected quarterly loss.
    Five Below Inc (NASDAQ: FIVE) rose 8.8 percent to $41.50 in pre-market trading after the company reported better-than-expected earnings for its fourth quarter.
    FireEye Inc (NASDAQ: FEYE) rose 8 percent to $12.40 in pre-market trading. Goldman Sachs upgraded FireEye from Sell to Buy.
    PVH Corp (NYSE: PVH) shares rose 7.4 percent to $97.60 in pre-market trading after the company posted upbeat earnings for its fourth quarter and issued a strong earnings forecast.
    Bitauto Hldg Ltd (ADR) (NASDAQ: BITA) shares rose 7 percent to $26.00 in pre-market trading after dropping 1.30 percent on Wednesday.
    Pingtan Marine Enterprise Ltd (NASDAQ: PME) rose 6.6 percent to $4.50 in pre-market trading after gaining 0.48 pe
  • [By Ben Levisohn]

    Today, the Wall Street Journal reported that Kate Spade & Co is considering a sale of the company, following pressure from activist investors given the volatile performance ever since Kate Spade became a mono brand company over 2 years ago. The article cites thatKate Spade has hired an investment bank and has reached out to possible buyers (including other retailers) althoughKate Spade has not responded. This comes at a time when brand houses like VF Corp. (VFC), PVH Corp. (PVH), Hanesbrands (HBI), Michael Kors Holdings (KORS), and Coach have said they are looking to make a branded acquisition, andKate Spade could be one of the strongest candidates. While other brands are seeing negative comps, pulling back on wholesale exposure or restructuring,Kate Spade continues to grow.

  • [By Lisa Levin]

    Breaking news

    Accenture Plc (NYSE: ACN) reported upbeat earnings for its second quarter.
    Five Below Inc (NASDAQ: FIVE) reported better-than-expected earnings for its fourth quarter on Wednesday.
    PVH Corp (NYSE: PVH) posted upbeat earnings for its fourth quarter and issued a strong earnings forecast.
    Conagra Brands Inc (NYSE: CAG) reported stronger-than-expected earnings for its third quarter.

  • [By Ben Levisohn]

    PVH (PVH) soared to the top of the S&P 500 today after its earnings topped the Street consensus.

    Getty Images

    PVHgained 8.5% to $98.55, while the S&P 500 dipped 0.1% to 2,345.96. The SPDR S&P Retail ETF (XRT) rose 0.8% to $41.21 as it bounced back from losses earlier this week.

    Wunderlich’s Eric Beder claims there’s a “worldwide power grab at PVH.” He explains:

    We are reiterating our Buy rating and $125 price target and raising our FY18 and FY19 EPS projections after PVH Corp. (PVH) handily registered top and bottom line upside for 4QFY17, driven by international upside at both Tommy Hilfiger and Calvin Klein. Despite continued FX-driven weakness, the international operations registered solid top and bottom line growth, as the company’s fashion brands continue to resonate and take market share. We believe that with strong international results remaining in force into 1Q, PVH is once again positioned to drive solid upside to guidance. Further, we believe the company has continued to take share in the domestic markets. We view PVH as one of the best positioned plays in our universe and reiterate our Buy rating on PVH.

    PVH’s market capitalization rose to $7.8 billion today from $7.2 billion yesterday.

  • [By Seth McNew]

    PVH Corp.(NYSE:PVH)– the parent company of well-known brands like Calvin Klein, Tommy Hilfiger,and Speedo USA — got a positive market reaction today following the release of its Q4 and full-year earnings. Thestock was up as much as 10% during the trading day.

Top 10 Biotech Stocks To Buy Right Now

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Toward the end of trading Friday, the Dow traded up 0.10 percent to 18,187.13 while the NASDAQ declined 0.41 percent to 5,194.78. The S&P also fell, dropping 0.20 percent to 2,128.74.

Leading and Lagging Sectors

Friday afternoon, industrials shares gained by 0.51 percent. Meanwhile, top gainers in the sector included Chicago Bridge & Iron Company N.V. (NYSE: CBI), and Granite Construction Inc. (NYSE: GVA).

Top 10 Biotech Stocks To Buy Right Now: Alnylam Pharmaceuticals Inc.(ALNY)

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Chris Dier-Scalise]

    On Thursday, the Vetr crowd downgraded Alnylam Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: ALNY) from 4.5 stars (Strong Buy), which was issued two days ago, to 3.5 stars (Hold). Crowd sentiment for Alnylam at the time of the downgrade was edging positive, with 66 percent of Vetr user rating bullish.

  • [By Ben Levisohn]

    Yesterday, after markets closed, it was announced that US Federal District Court Judge Sue Robinson ruled to issue a permanent injunction against Praluent, the PCSK9 mAb for hypercholesterolemia from partners Regeneron and Sanofi, due to infringement of patents from Amgen. The court has imposed a 30-day suspension (stay) on the injunction to allow for settlement or appeal of the District Court decision. Sanofi and Regeneron have announced their intent to appeal the ruling to the US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (CAFC). The injunction decision is consistent with our counter-consensus published views communicated on 25 January 2016 (“Downgrade to Sell on evidence of likely infringement of Amgen’s PCSK9 patents”) and subsequently. Based on consultation with expert legal counsel, we now put >75% probability Amgen will prevail on appeal and/or Praluent is ultimately removed from the US market, and/or Amgen achieves a settlement substantially in its favor. We currently model $3.3 bn in non-risk-adjusted 2022E US revenues for Praluent, while consensus models $1.2 bn in 2022E US revenues. We reiterate our view from 25 January 2016 to preferentially own Amgen, The Medicines Company (MDCO) (Buy), and Alnylam (ALNY) (Buy) over Regeneron for exposure to PCSK9 inhibitor market dynamics as outcomes trials approach.

  • [By Lisa Levin]

    Alnylam Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: ALNY) shares shot up 53 percent to $114.87 after the company impressed investors with encouraging data from a phase 3 clinical trial. Alnylam, a company dedicated towards treating a wide range of debilitating diseases through ribonucleic acid (RNA) interference (RNAi) therapeutics, said after Tuesday's market close that a phase 3 study called APOLLO met its primary efficacy endpoint and all secondary endpoints.

  • [By Brian Orelli]

    Alnylam Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:ALNY) jumped as much as 14.5% today after announcing earnings after the bell yesterday. As a development-stage biotech, it wasn’t the revenue or the earnings that caused the spike, but the progression of Allnylam’s pipeline.

  • [By Cory Renauer]

    Treating diseases that have a genetic component by altering the expression of the responsible genes is a promising new field of medicine, but it has been much less straightforward than biopharmaceutical companies had expected. Two contenders in this area, Alnylam Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:ALNY) and Ionis Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:IONS), saw a mix of setbacks and success in 2016.

Top 10 Biotech Stocks To Buy Right Now: ARIAD Pharmaceuticals Inc.(ARIA)

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Lisa Levin]

    Healthcare shares gained around 0.73 percent in trading on Monday. Meanwhile, top gainers in the sector included Ariad Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: ARIA), and VCA Inc (NASDAQ: WOOF).

Top 10 Biotech Stocks To Buy Right Now: Medivation Inc.(MDVN)

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Monica Gerson]

    Medivation Inc (NASDAQ: MDVN) is said to have spurned recent takeover approach from France’s Sanofi SA (ADR) (NYSE: SNY), according to sources as reported by Bloomberg on Tuesday. Sanofi wants Medivation’s treatments for hard-to-cure cancers, the sources said. Medivation shares surged 8.46 percent to $49.60 in the after-hours trading session, while Sanofi shares fell 0.59 percent to $42.02 in after-hours trading.

  • [By Ben Levisohn]

    Medivation (MDVN) has soared 20% to $80.41 after agreeing to be purchased for $14 billion, or $81.50 a share, by Pfizer (PFE). Pfizer has declined 0.7% to $34.75.

  • [By Ben Levisohn]

    Reports suggest that Gilead Sciences (GILD) and Celgene (CELG) have joined the bidding process forMedivation (MDVN), one that already includes (maybe) Amgen (AMGN), and of course Sanofi (SNY), which is trying to throw out Medivation’s board. Of the three biotech giants, Citigroup’s Robyn Karnauskas and team argue that Amgen is best positioned to win the battle. They explain why:

  • [By Scott Rubin]

    Big gainers on the day included Intersil Corp (NASDAQ: ISIL), which jumped 20 percent on news of a buyout, and Medivation (NASDAQ: MDVN), which added 20 percent on a deal with Pfizer (NYSE: PFE) related to its cancer drug. Cotiviti Holdings Inc (NYSE: COTV) lost around 9 percent in the wake of a mid-day sell-off and Marathon Oil Corporation (NYSE: MRO) fell 7 percent in the wake of a management shakeup.

Top 10 Biotech Stocks To Buy Right Now: Biogen Idec Inc(BIIB)

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Ben Levisohn]

    Biogen (BIIB) has dropped 2.2% to $286.16 after getting cut to Market Perform from Outperform at Leerink, and to Equal Weight from Overweight at Morgan Stanley.

  • [By Ben Levisohn]

    Biogen (BIIB) tumbled to the bottom of the S&P 500 today after getting cut by two analysts.

    Agence France-Presse/Getty Images

    Biogen dropped 4.7% to $278.96 at 4:19 p.m. today, while the S&P 500 declined 0.2% to 2,381.38.

    Leerinks Geoffrey Porges cited the “slower than expected ramp for Spinraza” in cutting Biogen to Market Perform from Outperform, while Morgan Stanly’s Matthew Harrison wrote that his decision to cut Biogen to Market Weight from Overweight was “not a downside call, but a timing call.”

    Biogen’s market capitalization fell to $60.2 billion today from $63.2 billion yesterday. It reported net income of $3.7 billion on sales of $10.2 billion in 2016.

    Barron’s Teresa Rivas recommended buying Biogen in December after the company released positive trial data on its Alzheimer’s drug.

  • [By Chris Lange]

    Biogen Inc. (NASDAQ: BIIB) had its short interest increase to 2.63 million shares from the previous 2.36 million. The stock closed Friday at $305.20, within a 52-week range of $223.02 to $333.65.

  • [By Chris Lange]

    The S&P 500 stock posting the largest daily percentage loss ahead of the close Wednesday was Biogen Inc. (NASDAQ: BIIB) which traded down about 6% at 297.99. The stocks 52-week range is $244.28 to $370.67. Volume was about 5 million compared to the daily average volume of roughly 1 million.

Top 10 Biotech Stocks To Buy Right Now: ArQule Inc.(ARQL)

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Paul Ausick]

    ArQule Inc. (NASDAQ: ARQL) dropped about 23% Friday, to post a new 52-week low of $1.13 after closing at $1.47 on Thursday. The stock’s 52-week high is $2.17. Volume was about 15 times the daily average of around 150,000 shares. The biopharmaceutical company said this morning that a phase 3 trial of a cancer drug did not meet the primary endpoint of improving overall survival.

Top 10 Biotech Stocks To Buy Right Now: Amgen Inc.(AMGN)

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Keith Speights]

    Gilead Sciences (NASDAQ:GILD), Bristol-Myers Squibb (NYSE:BMY), and Amgen (NASDAQ:AMGN) stand out as three of the most likely suitors for Incyte. Here’s why these big drugmakers could be interested in making a significant acquisition.

  • [By Ben Levisohn]

    Three biotech stocks–Alexion Pharmaceuticals (ALXN), Amgen (AMGN), and Celgene (CELG)–reported earnings since yesterday’s close. But just one has seen its shares head higher after the announcement.

  • [By Johanna Bennett]

    Shares of Amgen (AMGN) led the drop in the S&P 500 today falling almost 6.4% to close at $168.61 after the drug maker unveiledlong-awaited data on its anti-cholesterol drug Repatha.

    Can shares of Amgen rebound from todays selloff?

    Yes, is the answer from RBC Capital Management analyst Michael Yee. He argues that the drug makers share price can grind back up if access to Repatha increases over the next few quarters. Earlier today, Amgen released data from an outcome study that missed expectations, leading some analyst to predict that health plans will continue to restrict access to the drug.

    As Yee writes:

    A number of key developments midday at the ACC conference that should shed increased confidence that Repatha reimbursement and utilization will continue to increase over time driving a new growth driver for AMGN and increased confidence in a new product cycle. If reimbursement does start to open up over next few quarters (tracking IMS scripts and other datapoints) and AMGN manages their execution on quarters/guidance – stock should recover off today’s overreaction reflecting high expectations

  • [By Ben Levisohn]

    Biotech stocks have been particularly unloved during the past year, with the iShares Nasdaq Biotech Index ETF (IBB) gaining just 7% to the S&P 500′s 20% rise. Today, however, Amgen (AMGN) is getting a lot of love from the market after releasing Street beating earnings and reporting that its anti-cholesterol drug reduced heart attacks.

Many Volkswagen workers will get 45 vacation days

It’s a good time to be a German autoworker.

About 120,000 unionized Volkswagen (VLKAY) workers just agreed to a deal that gives them a significant pay bump and, in some cases, six extra days off.

Volkswagen said the workers will get a 4.3% pay rise starting in May, and from 2019 an extra 2.3% bonus and more pension benefits. Night shift workers, and those caring for children and elderly relatives, can swap the new bonus for six extra days off.

If they do, they’ll be entitled to about 45 paid days off each year, including public holidays.

Volkswagen Group — which also owns the Audi and Porsche brands — employs about 286,000 workers in Germany and 350,000 in other countries.

German workers are taking advantage of low unemployment and strong economic growth to flex their muscles at the negotiating table.

Volkswagen’s agreement is similar to another deal the IG Metall labor union negotiated earlier this month with Mercedes-Benz owner Daimler (DDAIF) and more than 700 engineering firms in southwestern Germany.

That benchmark deal allowed workers to opt for a 28-hour work week for up to two years, before returning to the standard 35-hour week. It was designed to give families more flexibility to care for children and the elderly.

Volkswagen did not offer as much in terms of flexible working hours, but an IG Metall spokesperson called it “a better deal” because of the company’s commitment to pay more towards pensions.

Economists say the pay deals should be positive for growth, because they will encourage Germans to spend more.

“Why should you save at these low interest rates?” said Florian Hense, an economist at Berenberg bank. “More likely the income gains will actually be spent and end up in … consumption of both domestic and imported goods.”

Other German manufacturing workers can expect healthy pay deals this year, but not everyone will benefit.

“Workers in the services industries and in the rest of the eurozone will get smaller pay rises,” noted Hense.

This is expected to keep inflation in check. And inflation in the eurozone is not expected to get close to the European Central Bank’s target of just under 2% for at least the next two years.

Top 5 Undervalued Stocks To Buy For 2018

The shares of UnitedHealth (UNH) are currently undervalued when using optimistic estimates. However, even with slightly conservative estimates, the current share price could still provide a 9% annual return potential from this moment onwards.

A majority of investors are more likely interested in how the valuation and possible long-term return for a specific stock look like. Let us start with valuation first. I will not be delving into the current business situation of UnitedHealth as there are already plenty of excellent articles covering this topic. Personally, I prefer to keep my estimates as conservative as possible in order to avoid negative surprises. In the case of UnitedHealth, if we were to assume the historical 10-year annual revenue growth of 10.0% and free cash flow to sales ratio of 5.2% could be sustained in the future, we would arrive at a normalized free cash flow level worth $11,823 million. With the current amount of outstanding shares, this translates into roughly $12.4 per share. Just as a reference, the 20-year historical values for the annual revenue growth and FCF to sales have been 16.3% and 6.3%, respectively. For 2017, analysts are expecting free cash flow per share of around $10.25 per share, which is much more pessimistic than mine.

Top 5 Undervalued Stocks To Buy For 2018: Old Second Bancorp Inc.(OSBC)

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Lisa Levin]

    Friday afternoon, the financial sector proved to be a source of strength for the market. Leading the sector was strength from Wins Finance Holdings Inc (NASDAQ: WINS) and Old Second Bancorp Inc. (NASDAQ: OSBC).

Top 5 Undervalued Stocks To Buy For 2018: Medtronic plc(MDT)

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Ben Levisohn]

    US sequential acceleration returns to the prior curve and debunks the bear case. Sequential growth in US [transcatheter aortic valve replacement, or TAVR,] in 1Q17 was ~12%, more in line with the ~13.5% average growth rate seen in the five quarters leading up to 3Q16. It’s hard to pinpoint the drivers, but we see several dynamics, including: (i) underlying device utilization thus far in 1Q, (ii) faster ramp at new hospitals where one additional TAVR per center is worth $15mn (~65% of the US upside we saw this quarter), and (iii) less acute competitive pressure from Medtronic (MDT) on larger valve sizes. SURTAVI likely played a limited role but management did not rule it out. Guidance implies a more conservative q/q US growth of ~3% for the rest of the year vs the ~12% this quarter, but underlying strength in the quarter is a material shift in US growth and intermediate penetration. As we stated in our preview, we favored the risk reward into the quarter given achievable expectations and the >20 point lag vs Intuitive YTD and would expect significant recovery tomorrow. Momentum likely continues into 2Q17 as signs of improving intermediate risk penetration provide important offsets to increased competition from Boston in early-2018 before mitral takes hold.

  • [By ]

    Medical device makers will also be in the price-control crosshairs. If the government can mandate drug prices, the same can be expected for pacemakers, artificial joints and other devices. Companies such as Medtronic (NYSE: MDT) and previously mentioned pharma giant Johnson & Johnson will find themselves adjusting to a new paradigm.

  • [By James E. Brumley]

    When an investor thinks of stocks in the cardio-monitoring arena, names like General Electric Company (NYSE:GE) and Medtronic PLC (NYSE:MDT) tend to surface first. And well they should. Medtronic is the largest name dedicated solely to equipment that tells doctors and nurses how well a patient’s heart is functioning, while GE Healthcare smartly leverages the name of its parent company’s recognizable name to win market share in the medical equipment space.

    General Electric and Medtronic aren’t the only names in town, however, and certainly not the top prospects for an investor seeking out a fresh, undiscovered growth opportunity. That honor arguably belongs to an up-and-coming small cap outfit called Biotricity Inc. (OTCMKTS:BTCY), which is nearing its first-ever revenue.

    Don’t look for a Biotricity product quite yet, as they’re not on the market. Consumers as well as investors will want to keep their eyes and ears open for two of them soon though, however, with one of those devices being a high-precision, FDA-approved instrument for use by healthcare workers in a clinical setting. The other device is a consumer-oriented version of the same technology, giving BTCY access to not just one but two crucial markets. Even more recently Biotricity reported it was opening up its development pipeline to the fetal monitoring and sleep apnea markets. Heart-monitoring is the near-term venture, though.

    The two products are called biotricity and biolife (neither moniker is supposed to be capitalized). The latter is a wireless, remote consumer-oriented heart rate and activity monitoring device, and the former is a clinical-grade monitoring device… also wireless and remotely operated/monitored.

    Bioflux is only available by prescription. The bioflux hardware includes an ECG (heart-rhythm) monitoring device, software, and if desired, service from a monitoring lab that performs remote diagnostic monitoring for up to 30 consecutive days at a time. It

  • [By Ben Levisohn]

    Cardinal Health (CAH) tumbled to the bottom of the S&P 500 today after agreeing to buy Medtronic’s (MDT) medical supplies business for $6.1 billion and offering disappointing guidance.

Top 5 Undervalued Stocks To Buy For 2018: CIRCOR International, Inc.(CIR)

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Lisa Levin]

    CIRCOR International, Inc. (NYSE: CIR) was down, falling around 15 percent to $60.91. CIRCOR reported Q4 adjusted earnings of $0.48 per share on revenue of $158 million. Stifel Nicolaus downgraded Circor from Buy to Hold.

Top 5 Undervalued Stocks To Buy For 2018: Silver Bay Realty Trust Corp.(SBY)

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Lisa Levin]

    Shares of Silver Bay Realty Trust Corp (NYSE: SBY) got a boost, shooting up 18 percent to $21.47. Tricon Capital Group Inc. announced plans to buy Silver Bay Realty Trust for $21.50 per share.

  • [By Mark Holder]

    Instead of competing in one-off auctions, the traditional method of acquiring homes and the one preferred by Silver Bay Realty Trust (NYSE: SBY  ) (NYSE: SBY  ) (NYSE: SBY  ) and American Homes 4 Rent (NYSE: AMH  ) (NYSE: AMH  ) (NYSE: AMH  ) , the company is obtaining non-performing loans in pools that include thousands of loans. The ultimate outcome of these different models is unknown, but the market hasso far supported Altisource Residential.

Top 5 Undervalued Stocks To Buy For 2018: Pound/Rand(PX)

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Ben Levisohn]

    The last twelve months haven’t been kind to Praxair (PX) and Air Products & Chemicals (APD), but UBS analyst John Roberts and team argue that’s about to change, as they upgrade their shares to Buy from Neutral arguing that their earnings can withstand a slowing global economy:

    In our view, the two stocks are more alike than different. NTM P/Es are within ~0.5 pts of each other. Both stocks have declined ~20% from their historical highs the largest corrections in 20+ years aside from the financial crisis…

    Industrial gas stocks have normally grown through changes in FX, oil & China demand within normal historical ranges. And investor concerns around China forAir Products & Chemicals may still prove much bigger than reality. Nevertheless, the combination of FX & oil sector impacts on Praxair, and FX & China issues for Air Products & Chemicals, have been much larger than previously seen. With oil already down, the dollar already appreciated, & China concerns already heightened we believe forward basis would appear to carry only normal risks (& lower if FX & oil are mean-reverting, which some theories support).

    Normal high single digit EPS growth projected for both in 2017 vs 2016: Four large firms serve 70%+ of the global merchant gas market, and price normally contributes ~2% to growth. Customer older captive units being outsourced contributes another 2%. Secular drivers for oxygen include energy savings (i.e. O2 burns more efficiently than air), life sciences (healthcare & microbial processes) nitrogen secular drivers include increasing purity requirements (food freezing & semiconductors). Topline growth ~2x global GDP more normal, with EPS growth ~2x sales growth due to high fixed costs (key variable costs are inexpensive air & power).

    Financial crisis demand drop was only a few %, in line with global GDP drop Most chemicals volumes dropped 10%+ (some 40%

Best Low Price Stocks To Buy For 2018

Following past boom/bust cycles, the oil business appears to have bottomed in February 2016 at $27 a barrel. The bruising multi-year bust in crude oil prices was the biggest reason for the world stock market sell-off from late 2015 to early 2016 of roughly 15% overall. The cruel irony of ultra-low prices is its disruptive effect on regular exploration activity. A short-term oil market depression in expectations disproportionately slashes oil drilling activity. Oil exploration budgets for 2017 are down 65% from 2014 and the smallest in 12 years, DESPITE a record estimate for global demand next year. In the long-run, oil & gas development and production may fail to keep pace with the steady growth in total demand. Will the 2015-16 “bust” sow the seeds of the next “boom” phase in pricing?

Click to enlarge

Best Low Price Stocks To Buy For 2018: Coeur d’Alene Mines Corporation(CDE)

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Dan Caplinger]

    Still, some stocks managed to buck the negative sentiment on Tuesday, and Sears Holdings (NASDAQ:SHLD), Plug Power (NASDAQ:PLUG) and Coeur Mining (NYSE:CDE) were among the best performers on the day. Below, we’ll look more closely at these stocks to tell you why they did so well.

  • [By Manikandan Raman]

    Citing bullish outlook on silver prices, Peter Bures of Canaccord Genuity has started coverage of four silver producers: Pan American Silver Corp. (USA) (NASDAQ: PAAS), Coeur Mining Inc (NYSE: CDE), Hecla Mining Company (NYSE: HL), and Endeavour Silver Corp (NYSE: EXK). The brokerage also assumed coverage of Fortuna Silver Mines Inc (NYSE: FSM) with a Buy rating.

  • [By Ben Levisohn]

    Given revised commodity deck forecasts (particularly for Steel and Gold) and improved Balance Sheet health (Steels, Precious and Industrials Metals) we are upgrading our ratings on several stocks in our coverage. We generally favor companies that have already initiated specific self-help, have low-cost assets and are less exposed to China supply and demand dynamics. In Steels, we have increased our rating from Hold to Buy on Nucor (NUE) and from Sell to Hold on US Steel. We have also upgraded Kinross Gold (KGC) to a Hold on valuation…On higher-than-peer valuations, we reiterate Sell-rated Coeur Mining (CDE), Franco-Nevada (FNV), Goldcorp (GG), Teck Resources (TCK) and highly leveraged AK Steel given preference to issue further equity if possible.

Best Low Price Stocks To Buy For 2018: Syndax Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (SNDX)

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Chris Lange]

    Syndax Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: SNDX) is watching its shares make a handy gain on Wednesday after the firm reported a key agreement. Essentially, the company announced that it has entered into a Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (CRADA) with the National Cancer Institute (NCI).

  • [By Lisa Levin]

    Shares of Syndax Pharmaceuticals Inc (NASDAQ: SNDX) got a boost, shooting up 32 percent to $12.40 after the company reported the advancement of ENCORE 601 in non-small cell lung cancer patients with disease progression on or after PD-1 therapies.

Best Low Price Stocks To Buy For 2018: HTG Molecular Diagnostics, Inc.(HTGM)

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Lisa Levin]

    HTG Molecular Diagnostics Inc (NASDAQ: HTGM) shares shot up 106 percent to $4.40 after the molecular profiling company confirmed regulatory approval for its products in Europe. HTG Molecular announced that it has obtained CE marking in the European Union for its HTG EdgeSeqALKPlus Assay EU, an in vitro diagnostic assay which is intended to measure and analyze mRNA ALK gene rearrangements in formalin-fixed, paraffin-embedded lung tumor specimens from patients previously diagnosed with non-small cell lung cancer.

  • [By Lisa Levin] Related HTGM 20 Biggest Mid-Day Losers For Thursday 25 Stocks Moving In Thursday's Pre-Market Session HTG Molecular Diagnostics Obtains CE Mark for its HTG EdgeSeq ALKPlus Assay EU (GuruFocus)
    Related SSH 15 Biggest Mid-Day Gainers For Wednesday 12 Biggest Mid-Day Losers For Tuesday Healthcare – Top 5 Gainers / Losers as of 11:00 am (Seeking Alpha) Gainers
    HTG Molecular Diagnostics Inc (NASDAQ: HTGM) rose 63.6 percent to $3.50 in pre-market trading after the company disclosed that it has obtained CE marking in the EU for HTG EdgeSeq ALKPlus Assay.
    Sunshine Heart Inc (NASDAQ: SSH) rose 20.3 percent to $2.61 in pre-market trading after the company issued a business update regarding execution of its strategic growth plan.
    bebe stores, inc. (NASDAQ: BEBE) shares rose 11.1 percent to $4.29 in pre-market trading after the company disclosed that it is exploring strategic alternatives.
    Cancer Genetics Inc (NASDAQ: CGIX) rose 10.3 percent to $3.20 in pre-market trading after the company posted a narrower-than-expected quarterly loss.
    Five Below Inc (NASDAQ: FIVE) rose 8.8 percent to $41.50 in pre-market trading after the company reported better-than-expected earnings for its fourth quarter.
    FireEye Inc (NASDAQ: FEYE) rose 8 percent to $12.40 in pre-market trading. Goldman Sachs upgraded FireEye from Sell to Buy.
    PVH Corp (NYSE: PVH) shares rose 7.4 percent to $97.60 in pre-market trading after the company posted upbeat earnings for its fourth quarter and issued a strong earnings forecast.
    Bitauto Hldg Ltd (ADR) (NASDAQ: BITA) shares rose 7 percent to $26.00 in pre-market trading after dropping 1.30 percent on Wednesday.
    Pingtan Marine Enterprise Ltd (NASDAQ: PME) rose 6.6 percent to $4.50 in pre-market trading after gaining 0.48 pe
  • [By Lisa Levin]

    HTG Molecular Diagnostics Inc (NASDAQ: HTGM) shares shot up 190 percent to $11.42 after surging 83.64 percent on Thursday. HTG Molecular Diagnostics reported a Q4 loss of $0.76 per share on revenue of $1.5 million.

  • [By Lisa Levin]

    HTG Molecular Diagnostics Inc (NASDAQ: HTGM) shares shot up 175 percent to $10.80 after surging 83.64 percent on Thursday. HTG Molecular Diagnostics reported a Q4 loss of $0.76 per share on revenue of $1.5 million.

  • [By Lisa Levin]

    HTG Molecular Diagnostics Inc (NASDAQ: HTGM) shares were also up, gaining 136 percent to $2.95. HTG Molecular Diagnostics disclosed that its new direct-target sequencing chemistry will be launched in the first quarter.

  • [By Lisa Levin] Related HTGM Mid-Afternoon Market Update: Dow Falls 50 Points; Micron Shares Jump Following Strong Earnings Report Mid-Day Market Update: ZAIS Group Gains Following Q4 Results; Xenon Pharmaceuticals Shares Decline HTG Molecular Diagnostics Completes Initial Technical Feasibility Testing with QIAGEN … (GuruFocus)
    Related Mid-Afternoon Market Update: Dow Falls 50 Points; Micron Shares Jump Following Strong Earnings Report Mid-Day Market Update: ZAIS Group Gains Following Q4 Results; Xenon Pharmaceuticals Shares Decline Zais Group reports Q4 results (Seeking Alpha)
    HTG Molecular Diagnostics Inc (NASDAQ: HTGM) shares climbed 204.1 percent to $11.95 after surging 83.64 percent on Thursday. HTG Molecular Diagnostics reported a Q4 loss of $0.76 per share on revenue of $1.5 million.
    ZAIS Group Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ: ZAIS) shares surged 52.6 percent to $3.45. ZAIS Group reported Q4 earnings of $0.29 per share on revenue of $16.73 million.
    Global Brokerage Inc (NASDAQ: GLBR) shares jumped 24.3 percent to $2.30.
    Regulus Therapeutics Inc (NASDAQ: RGLS) shares surged 20 percent to $1.50. Regulus Therapeutics’ Chairman bought 500,000 shares at $1.22 per share.
    Rocket Fuel Inc (NASDAQ: FUEL) shares gained 15.6 percent to $5.19.
    Akoustis Technologies Inc (NASDAQ: AKTS) rose 13.3 percent to $10.75 as the company agreed to acquire wafer manufacturing facility for $2.75 million in cash.
    TOP SHIPS Inc (NASDAQ: TOPS) shares gained 12.6 percent to $1.25.
    Inventure Foods Inc (NASDAQ: SNAK) jumped 10.4 percent to $4.46 after the company announced the strategic sale of Fresh Frozen Foods for $23.7 million in cash.
    CymaBay Therapeutics Inc (NASDAQ: CBAY) surged 8.7 percent to $4.14. Cymabay Therapeutics reported a Q4 loss of $0.30 per share.

Best Low Price Stocks To Buy For 2018: Summit Midstream Partners, LP(SMLP)

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Matthew DiLallo]

    More often than not, when a company’s dividend starts approaching 10%, it’susually a sign that the market expects the payout to head lower in the very near future. However, for Summit Midstream Partners (NYSE:SMLP), that doesn’t appear to be the case. That’s because the pipeline and processing company can cover its payout with plenty of room to spare. In fact, it could actually resume distribution growth by year-end. While the company does have a large financial hurdle to overcome in the future, it has plenty of time to find a solution other than cutting the distribution.

Best Low Price Stocks To Buy For 2018: iShares MSCI All Peru Capped ETF (EPU)

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Todd Shriber, ETF Professor]

    ARGT, the lone exchange traded fund dedicated to Argentine equities, is up 19.6 percent year-to-date. That is good for the second-best showing among Latin America single-country ETFs, trailing only the iShares MSCI Capped Peru Index Fund (NYSE: EPU).

  • [By Andrew Efimoff] Related Some Positive Indexing News For A Frontier Markets ETF Why The Frontier Markets ETF Slumped Last Year Status Quo Decisions Would Bode Well For PAK ETF (Seeking Alpha)
    Related EPU Peru ETF Confronts Politics Commodities Call For The Colombia ETF Gra帽a Y Montero May Have Peaked In 2016 (Seeking Alpha) Gainers Pakistan: Global XMSCI Pakistan ETF (NYSE: PAK) is up 5.67 percent after receiving MSCI’s Emerging Markets Index approval. Peru: iShares MSCI All Peru Capped Index Fund(NYSE: EPU) is up 2.15 percent after Kuzynski won Peru’s nail-biting election. Philippines: iShares MSCI Philippines Investable(NYSE: EPHE) is up 2.21 percent after Macquarie Research said President Elect Rodrigo Duterte would lift the Pilipino property market. India: iShares MSCI India ETF (NYSE: INDA) is up 1.96 percent after India’s government relaxed regulation, making it easier for domestic airlines to fly overseas.

    Related Link: Some Positive Indexing News For A Frontier Markets ETF

Tuesdays Vital Data: Tesla Inc (TSLA), United States Steel Corp. (X) and Netflix, Inc. (NFLX)

U.S. stock futures are trading broadly lower this morning. Rising bond yields and a strengthening dollar are to blame, once again. The Treasury Department will auction $28 billion of 2-year notes, $35 billion of 5-year notes and $29 billion of 7-year notes this week. The influx of new treasurys is driving prices lower and lifting yields, sending stocks tumbling.

stock market todayHeading into the open, Dow Jones Industrial Average futures are down 0.65%, S&P 500 futures have fallen 0.59% and Nasdaq-100 futures are lower by 0.55%.

Turning to the options pits, volume was brisk on Friday. Overall, about 25.4 million calls and 21.3 million puts changed hands at the end of last week. The CBOE single-session equity put/call volume ratio fell to a one-month low of 0.52. The 10-day moving average dipped to a one-week low of 0.69.

Taking a closer look at yesterday’s options activity, Tesla Inc (NASDAQ:TSLA) saw mixed activity on Friday after reports surfaced the company had produced 300,000 vehicles. Meanwhile, United States Steel Corporation (NYSE:X) options volume surged after President Trump said he was considering steel import tariffs. Finally, Netflix, Inc. (NASDAQ:NFLX) call volume lingered a day after the company received a price-target bump and bullish research note.

Tuesday’s Vital Options Data: Tesla Inc. (TSLA), United States Steel Corp. (X) and Netflix, Inc. (NFLX)investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/02-20-2018-Top-Ten-Options-300×132.png 300w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/02-20-2018-Top-Ten-Options-65×30.png 65w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/02-20-2018-Top-Ten-Options-200×88.png 200w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/02-20-2018-Top-Ten-Options-400×176.png 400w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/02-20-2018-Top-Ten-Options-116×51.png 116w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/02-20-2018-Top-Ten-Options-100×44.png 100w,https://investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/02-20-2018-Top-Ten-Options-114×50.png 114w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/02-20-2018-Top-Ten-Options-78×34.png 78w, investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/02/02-20-2018-Top-Ten-Options-170×75.png 170w” sizes=”(max-width: 570px) 100vw, 570px” />

Tesla Inc. (TSLA)

Hitting the 300,000-vehicle production mark should have been a point of celebration for Tesla stock investors. Bloomberg’s Tesla production tracker reported the milestone this weekend. However, production issues for the Model 3 have undermined the revelry.

Specifically, consumers who preordered the Model 3 may be in for a bit of a shock, as the $7,500 electric vehicle tax credit begins to phase out after Tesla sells 200,000 vehicles. Some competitors, like Chevy with it’s Bolt, are reporting defections from the waiting list to take advantage of the tax credit. However, Chevy is also nearing the EV sales cap.

Worried that more defections could be on the way, TSLA stock options traders expressed concern on Friday. Volume on TSLA rose to over 253,000 contracts, with calls only eking out 54% of the day’s take. Pessimism is growing thick on Tesla heading into March, with the front-month put/call open interest ratio rising to 1.20. Look for this ratio to trend higher as this story develops.

United States Steel Corporation (X)

Last week, the U.S. Commerce Department recommended tariffs on steel and aluminum imports, sending steel stocks like U.S. Steel soaring. President Donald Trump has said he is considering the tariffs, after signing similar tariffs in the solar industry last month.

While X stock rallied nearly 15% on the news, options traders weren’t nearly as enthusiastic. Volume rocketed to 245,000 contracts on X stock, nearly six times U.S. Steel’s daily average. Calls, however, only made up 64% of the day’s take — a figure that should have been higher given X stock’s rally.

Furthermore, much of this call activity may have been profit taking. X’s March put/call OI ratio rose to 0.90 after Friday’s activity. In other words, despite added call volume, puts were added at a faster pace, suggesting many of those call trades were closeouts.

Netflix, Inc. (NFLX)

On Thursday, GBH Insights reiterated it’s “highly attractive” rating on Netflix stock and lifted its price target to $310 from $255. According to GBH, the new target reflects stronger-than-expected subscriber additions for the rest of the year. NFLX stock rose more than 5% on Thursday, but lost about half that gain on Friday.

Still, NFLX options traders have remained bullish. Volume on Friday came in at 203,000 contracts, with calls making up 64% of the day’s take — a relatively high percentage historically for NFLX.

Looking out to March, we find that the put/call OI ratio is in flux. The reading has fallen in recent weeks to 0.70, down from near-term highs north of 0.90. However, this ratio is still in the middle of NFLX’s annual range, indicating complacency toward the shares.

As of this writing, Joseph Hargett did not hold a position in any of the aforementioned securities.

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Steel Rally Has Further to Run on Unprecedented Conditions

The rally in steel prices has further to run due to China’s crackdown on output and “unprecedented” conditions for synchronized global growth, according to the managing director of Japan’s biggest producer of recycled steel.

China’s benchmark for hot-rolled steel could approach $800 a metric ton this year, a level that would be 25 percent higher than current prices, said Kiyoshi Imamura of Tokyo Steel Manufacturing Co., even after more than doubling in the past two years as top producer China cut capacity.

“I’ve been working in the steel industry for nearly 40 years, but I’ve never seen such simultaneous worldwide economic prosperity,” Imamura in an interview in Tokyo this week.

#lazy-img-322989113:before{padding-top:56.25%;}

China’s environmental clean-up, which involves shutting polluting and inefficient mills, combined with booming demand, will keep its exports under control, Imamura said. Chronic oversupply in China crashed the global steel market in 2015, drawing fire from world leaders who said the nation wasn’t doing enough to fix the global glut.

For Imamura’s take on the prospect of U.S. tariffs, click here.

South Korea’s Posco reported earnings on Wednesday that suggest global steel companies are due another round of bumper profits. China’s biggest mill, Baoshan Iron & Steel Co., followed Thursday by saying it expected net income to more than double when it reports 2017 earnings.

H&Ms stock has been cut in half over 3 years heres how to play the retailer

Hennes & Mauritz shareholders just endured another tough stretch, with H&Ms stock unraveling by some 20% since mid-December. Bears are growling that the fast-fashion powerhouses days as a growth story are over.

In the weeks ahead, the Swedish retailer might win back some investors as it gives its annual results on Jan. 31 and holds its first-ever capital markets day, a meeting for institutional investors, on Feb. 14.

But there is also a chance that the pessimists are right, and a big rally isnt in the cards at this point.

The company may continue to aspire to 10% to 15% annual sales growth, but with actual performance so weak and future store openings now set to be scaled back significantly, we think the days of consensus assuming that a return to growth is just around the corner are coming to an end, wrote Morgan Stanley analysts in a recent note. They have an Underweight rating on H&Ms stock
HMB, +0.43%
and a price target of 120 Swedish kronor ($15), implying a drop of more than 20% from the recent print near SEK157.

After sales gains of 18% and 19% in the fiscal years that ended November 2014 and November 2015, H&M delivered a 6% rise in 2016 and looks set for 4% growth in the just-concluded fiscal year, hampered by a decline in fourth-quarter revenue that H&M revealed last month. In the 2018 and 2019 fiscal years, sales growth is expected to range between 5% and 6%, according to consensus estimates from FactSet.

H&M has been an international rollout story, but lately there have been twists in that tale, Morgan Stanleys Geoff Ruddell and Amy Curry say. H&M has more than 4,000 stores around the world, after clearing the 3,000-locations mark five years ago and topping 2,000 roughly a decade ago. Yet these days, H&M is closing stores in mature markets, as shoppers increasingly buy its $7 T-shirts online. Accelerating internet sales havent fully offset reduced foot traffic.

Moreover, the main challenge for H&M isnt just adjusting to a web-centric world, but that its value proposition is fading for customers who can now shop considerably more cheaply elsewhere, write Ruddell and Curry. One rival with budget offerings: British clothing retailer Primark, owned by Associated British Foods
ABF, -0.18%
.

Smaller sales gains will lead to weaker profit growth, and H&Ms price/earnings multiple ought to continue to drop to reflect that it has been several years since H&M has really been a growth stock, the Morgan Stanley team wrote. Shares trade at 16 times forward-year estimated earnings, on par with U.S. clothing retailer Gaps
GPS, +3.11%
P/E, and much cheaper than its Spanish rival Industria de Dise帽o Textils
ITX, +0.81%
, or Inditex, with its 26 multiple.

Inditex, the parent of Zara, may deserve to be significantly pricier. H&M and Inditex are a world apart in their prospects, Barclays analysts offer in a recent note. Barclays puts an Underweight rating on the Swedish company and an Overweight rating on the Spanish retailer. H&M has grown mainly through opening new stores as sales deteriorated in key regions, and its profit margins could keep falling, wrote the banks Boris Vilidnitsky and Alvira Rao. Meanwhile, Inditexs margins look defensible, and the market hasnt given that retailer enough credit for its ability to boost sales per store, they wrote.

More from Barrons: This iPhone X suppliers stock has a charge left even after tripling this year

And read: What could keep Ryanair from soaring higher its ambitions

H&M does boast a pretty fat dividend yield of 6%, though management could reduce the payout.

We would not rule out a dividend cut, perhaps even later this month, warn Morgan Stanleys Ruddell and Curry, though they say thats not the most likely scenario. Cutting it would give the company much more freedom to reinvent its customer proposition. An H&M spokeswoman says executives werent available for an interview, citing a quiet period before results hit on Jan. 31.

This month, H&Ms stock slid to nine-year lows, and it now has been sliced in half after climbing above SEK360 in 2015. Some shareholders still sound upbeat.

H&M has invested heavily in its online presence in recent years, and we believe it is better positioned than many in the market appreciate, wrote David Herro and Michael Manelli, portfolio managers for Oakmark International Fund, which holds H&M shares, in their fourth-quarter letter. The Stockholm-based companys disappointing fourth-quarter sales were due in part to weakness in its sector, as well as a fashion miss in H&Ms collection and a failure to get the right product to the right stores. The retailer has made changes, they note, with a new H&M brand head tackling fashion and product-allocation issues.

Even so, investors may want to wait and see if management offers reassurances in the next few weeks that beaten-up H&M is a bargain.

Now read: These defensive stocks make the cut as one of Morgan Stanleys key picks for 2018

Also see: What stock-market sector looks good in 2018? Think planes, trains and automobiles

This report first appeared at barrons.com.

Related Topics Investing Stocks Mutual Funds Exchange Traded Funds Options Center Bonds

By this measure, U.S. stock market returns arent as big as they look

Adjusted for a weaker U.S. dollar, S&P 500 gains in 2017 were less impressive than meets the eye, and offer yet another reminder why portfolios should diversified globally, according to analysts at New Frontier Advisors.

The S&P 500
SPX, -0.06%
rose 19.4% last year, fueled by optimism over corporate tax cuts and favorable economic growth environment as well as low inflation. The stock market performance, attributed in part to a strengthening economy, stands in contrast to a flattening yield curve and a weakening U.S. dollar, both of which signal low economic growth in the long term.

The yield curvethe difference between short-dated and long-dated yieldshas been flattening steadily since 2013, when it was at about 265 basis points. The spread between two-
TMUBMUSD02Y, -0.19%
and 10-year Treasury yields
TMUBMUSD10Y, -0.17%
is currently at 60 basis points.

An inverted yield curve preceded all of the past seven recessions, but a flattening yield curve does not always mean it will invert. In fact, the yield curve steepened over the past few weeks after narrowing to 48 basis points.

The ICE U.S dollar Index
DXY, -0.18%
which measures the greenback against six other major rivals, fell by 9.8% in 2017, despite the Federal Reserve increasing interest rates three times last year and promising three more hikes in 2018.

A weaker dollar also makes U.S. assets less attractive to foreign investors, resulting in diminished demand.

When we adjust for the dollar weakness [by using the ICE dollar index], the actual return in 2017 was 7.4%, or below the average return since 1957, which is 8.6%, said Robert Michaud, chief investment officer at New Frontier Advisors.

It is true that 7.4% return is still positive, but from an international investors point of view, its mediocre, Michaud said.

For European investors, for example, the nominal gain in the S&P 500 in euro terms, was only 4.9%, according to FactSet.

Read: Why stock market records may just be a mirage caused by dollar weakness

But even U.S.-based investors should consider mitigating the currency risk by diversifying their portfolios, according to Michaud.

From a purchasing power perspective, the U.S. market peaked in at the beginning of March 2017. U.S. investors, even if they spend money only domestically cannot ignore this, because we live in a global economy, he said.

The S&P 500 is up another 6.1% so far in January, and with only five trading days left in the month, it is shaping up to be one of the best monthly performances since March 2016. Meanwhile, the dollar weakened another 3% against its main rival euro and Japanese yen and fell 5.2% against British pound.

The dollar slumped to a three-year low on Wednesday, with the ICE dollar index falling 1% to 89.24 on Wednesday after Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin at the annual meeting of the World Economic Forum in Davos said he wasnt concerned about the currencys recent decline. A weaker dollar is good for trade. In the longer term, a stronger dollar is a reflection of the strength of the U.S. economy, he said.

See: Investors shouldnt be surprised that the Trump administration is talking down the dollar

Also read: Heres what Trumps weak-dollar policy means for the stock market

Euphoria in the stock market right now is pretty high. I certainly would not want investors taking out mortgages to invest in stocks right now, but its also not a reason to sell everything. Ideally, investors would have more global perspective all along and have a diversified portfolio, Michaud said.

Related Topics U.S. Stocks Markets Investing