Investor Update: Lowe’s Companies, Inc. (NYSE:LOW), Anthem, Inc. (NYSE:ANTM): An in Depth Look

Here we will take a look at the Gross Margin Score of Lowe’s Companies, Inc. (NYSE:LOW) shares. The equity currently has a score of 13.00000. This score is derived from the Gross Margin (Marx) stability and growth over the previous eight years. The Gross Margin score lands on a scale from 1 to 100 where a score of 1 would be considered positive, and a score of 100 would be seen as negative.  The low score of 13.00000 for Lowe’s Companies, Inc. indicates a top score for stability and growth.

Trying to project the day to day short-term movements of the stock market may be all but impossible. Stocks have the tendency to make sudden moves on even the slightest bit of news or for apparently no reason at all. The daily trader may be looking to capitalize on swings or momentum, but the long-term investor may be searching for stability and consistency over a sustained period of time. During trading sessions, stock movements can seem like a popularity contest from time to time. Even after careful study, there may be no logical reason for a particular stock move. Riding out the waves of uncertainty may not be easy, but having a full-proof plan for when markets erode may just be the savior. Having the patience to wait out abnormal moves may help evade the mistake of letting go too soon out of panic. 

Checking in on some valuation rankings, Lowe’s Companies, Inc. (NYSE:LOW) has a Value Composite score of 47. Developed by James O’Shaughnessy, the VC score uses five valuation ratios. These ratios are price to earnings, price to cash flow, EBITDA to EV, price to book value, and price to sales. The VC is displayed as a number between 1 and 100. In general, a company with a score closer to 0 would be seen as undervalued, and a score closer to 100 would indicate an overvalued company. Adding a sixth ratio, shareholder yield, we can view the Value Composite 2 score which is currently sitting at 38.

In trying to determine the current valuation of Lowe’s Companies, Inc. (NYSE:LOW) shares, we note that the Book to Market ratio of the shares stands at 0.067535. It’s commonly accepted that a Book to Market ratio greater than one indicates that the shares might be undervalued.  The book to market ratio has some limitations in certain industries however where intangible assets (such as knowledge) often are not represented on a balance sheet. The ratio is calculated by dividing the market price per share by book value per share.  

At the time of writing, Lowe’s Companies, Inc. (NYSE:LOW) has a Piotroski F-Score of 6. The F-Score may help discover companies with strengthening balance sheets. The score may also be used to spot the weak performers. Joseph Piotroski developed the F-Score which employs nine different variables based on the company financial statement. A single point is assigned to each test that a stock passes. Typically, a stock scoring an 8 or 9 would be seen as strong. On the other end, a stock with a score from 0-2 would be viewed as weak.

Lowe’s Companies, Inc. (NYSE:LOW) has a current ERP5 Rank of 6679 . The ERP5 Rank may assist investors with spotting companies that are undervalued. This ranking uses four ratios. These ratios are Earnings Yield, ROIC, Price to Book, and 5 year average ROIC. When looking at the ERP5 ranking, it is generally considered the lower the value, the better.

Ever wonder how investors predict positive share price momentum?  The Cross SMA 50/200, also known as the “Golden Cross” is the fifty day moving average divided by the two hundred day moving average.  The SMA 50/200 for Lowe’s Companies, Inc. (NYSE:LOW) is currently 0.95836.  If the Golden Cross is greater than 1, then the 50 day moving average is above the 200 day moving average – indicating a positive share price momentum.  If the Golden Cross is less than 1, then the 50 day moving average is below the 200 day moving average, indicating that the price might drop.

The Leverage Ratio of Lowe’s Companies, Inc. (NYSE:LOW) is 0.423887.  Leverage ratio is the total debt of a company divided by total assets of the current and past year divided by two.  Companies take on debt to finance their day to day operations.  The leverage ratio can measure how much of a company’s capital comes from debt.  With this ratio, investors can better estimate how well a company will be able to pay their long and short term financial obligations.

ROA & ROIC

There are many different tools to determine whether a company is profitable or not.  One of the most popular ratios is the “Return on Assets” (aka ROA).  This score indicates how profitable a company is relative to its total assets.  The Return on Assets for Lowe’s Companies, Inc. (NYSE:LOW) is 0.100073.  This number is calculated by dividing net income after tax by the company’s total assets.  A company that manages their assets well will have a higher return, while a company that manages their assets poorly will have a lower return.

The Return on Invested Capital (aka ROIC) for Lowe’s Companies, Inc. (NYSE:LOW) is 0.303784.  The Return on Invested Capital is a ratio that determines whether a company is profitable or not.  It tells investors how well a company is turning their capital into profits.  The ROIC is calculated by dividing the net operating profit (or EBIT) by the employed capital.  The employed capital is calculated by subrating current liabilities from total assets.  Similarly, the Return on Invested Capital Quality ratio is a tool in evaluating the quality of a company’s ROIC over the course of five years.  The ROIC Quality of Lowe’s Companies, Inc. (NYSE:LOW) is 7.039420.  This is calculated by dividing the five year average ROIC by the Standard Deviation of the 5 year ROIC.  The ROIC 5 year average is calculated using the five year average EBIT, five year average (net working capital and net fixed assets).  The ROIC 5 year average of Lowe’s Companies, Inc. (NYSE:LOW) is 0.244813.

Investors may be getting ready to buy into the stock market as we cruise into the second half of the year. Filtering out the constant noise in the markets can be challenging. Sifting through all the data can be trying, especially for the novice investor. Digging down into the fundamentals may help weed out the undesirable companies. Investors will most likely be scouting out the equity market for any bargains. Although they may be harder to find these days, there still may be a hidden gem out there somewhere. As companies start to report quarterly earnings, investors will be closely following to see which ones are poised for success over the next few quarters.    

Investors having Anthem, Inc. (NYSE:ANTM) on their watchlists might want to take into consideration the Gross Margin Score of the firm. Anthem, Inc. currently has a score of 10.00000. This score is derived from the Gross Margin (Marx) stability and growth over the previous eight years. The Gross Margin score lands on a scale from 1 to 100 where a score of 1 would be considered positive, and a score of 100 would be seen as negative.  The low score of 10.00000 for Anthem, Inc. indicates a top score for stability and growth.

Investors are constantly looking for ways to achieve success trading the stock market. Veteran investors may have spent many years trying to figure out the best way to build a winning stock portfolio. Unfortunately, there is no secret formula to beating the market. New investors may start trading with some preconceived notions about how to make money in stocks. Although there are some methods that might have worked in the past, nobody can guarantee future results based on past methods and performance. Investors may end up finding out the hard way that there is rarely any substitute for hard work and dedication, especially when picking stocks. 

The Piotroski F-Score is a scoring system between 1-9 that determines a firm’s financial strength.  The score helps determine if a company’s stock is valuable or not.  The Piotroski F-Score of Anthem, Inc. (NYSE:ANTM) is 6.  A score of nine indicates a high value stock, while a score of one indicates a low value stock.  The score is calculated by the return on assets (ROA), Cash flow return on assets (CFROA), change in return of assets, and quality of earnings.  It is also calculated by a change in gearing or leverage, liquidity, and change in shares in issue.  The score is also determined by change in gross margin and change in asset turnover.

Turning to valuation, Anthem, Inc. (NYSE:ANTM) has a Value Composite score of 42. Developed by James O’Shaughnessy, the VC score uses five valuation ratios. These ratios are price to earnings, price to cash flow, EBITDA to EV, price to book value, and price to sales. The VC is displayed as a number between 1 and 100. In general, a company with a score closer to 0 would be seen as undervalued, and a score closer to 100 would indicate an overvalued company. Adding a sixth ratio, shareholder yield, we can view the Value Composite 2 score which is currently sitting at 40.

At the time of writing, Anthem, Inc. (NYSE:ANTM) has a Piotroski F-Score of 6. The F-Score may help discover companies with strengthening balance sheets. The score may also be used to spot the weak performers. Joseph Piotroski developed the F-Score which employs nine different variables based on the company financial statement. A single point is assigned to each test that a stock passes. Typically, a stock scoring an 8 or 9 would be seen as strong. On the other end, a stock with a score from 0-2 would be viewed as weak.

Anthem, Inc. (NYSE:ANTM) has a current ERP5 Rank of 4728 . The ERP5 Rank may assist investors with spotting companies that are undervalued. This ranking uses four ratios. These ratios are Earnings Yield, ROIC, Price to Book, and 5 year average ROIC. When looking at the ERP5 ranking, it is generally considered the lower the value, the better.

Shifting gears, we can see that Anthem, Inc. (NYSE:ANTM) has a Q.i. Value of 35.00000. The Q.i. Value ranks companies using four ratios. These ratios consist of EBITDA Yield, FCF Yield, Liquidity, and Earnings Yield. The purpose of the Q.i. Value is to help identify companies that are the most undervalued. Typically, the lower the value, the more undervalued the company tends to be.

PI & Volatility

Stock volatility is a percentage that indicates whether a stock is a desirable purchase.  Investors look at the Volatility 12m to determine if a company has a low volatility percentage or not over the course of a year.  The Volatility 12m of Anthem, Inc. (NYSE:ANTM) is 23.893300.  This is calculated by taking weekly log normal returns and standard deviation of the share price over one year annualized.  The lower the number, a company is thought to have low volatility.  The Volatility 3m is a similar percentage determined by the daily log normal returns and standard deviation of the share price over 3 months.  The Volatility 3m of Anthem, Inc. (NYSE:ANTM) is 29.880400.  The Volatility 6m is the same, except measured over the course of six months.  The Volatility 6m is 27.133900.

We can now take a quick look at some historical stock price index data. Anthem, Inc. (NYSE:ANTM) presently has a 10 month price index of 1.39037. The price index is calculated by dividing the current share price by the share price ten months ago. A ratio over one indicates an increase in share price over the period. A ratio lower than one shows that the price has decreased over that time period. Looking at some alternate time periods, the 12 month price index is 1.32551, the 24 month is 1.90888, and the 36 month is 2.52135. Narrowing in a bit closer, the 5 month price index is 1.13631, the 3 month is 1.09613, and the 1 month is currently 1.20116.

For many individual investors, deciding the proper time to sell a stock may be just as important as figuring out which stocks to buy at the outset. Investors may be reviewing the portfolio and looking at some stocks that have taken off and made a big run to the upside. When this occurs, investors may need to make the tough decision of whether to take some profits or hold out for further gains. Because every scenario is different, investors may want to dig a little deeper into the fundamentals before making a decision. If the stock’s fundamentals have weakened, it might be time to reassess the position.