Monthly Archives

July 2020

StockPointer® Canada Portfolio Transactions – July 2020

We have rebalanced the Nasdaq Inovestor Canadian Index based on our Stockpointer® Canada model portfolio. These trades are effective as of Friday, July 17th after market close. Here are the details of the trades:

Ins:

1. Thomson Reuters Corp (TRI) – Market Trend. Increase in the discretionary sector as shown by the Top 100 index, therefore, increasing our position in the portfolio.
2. Empire Company (EMP.A) – Market trend. Increase in the Consumer Staples sector.
3. Richelieu Hardware Ltd. (RCH) – Intra-sectorial transaction. In the top of its sector.

Outs:

1. CCL Industries Inc. Class B (CCL.B) – Market Trend. Decrease in the materials sector as shown by the Top 100 index, decreasing our position in the portfolio.
2. Stella-Jones (SJ) – Market trend. Decrease in the materials sector.
3. Gildan (GIL) – Intra-sectorial transaction. No longer in the top of its sector.

Rebalancing :
The purpose of rebalancing is to limit idiosyncratic risk associated with individual stocks. The re-balancing process resulted in a 3.5% weight for each on the following stocks: Thomson Reuters Corp. (TRI), Richelieu Hardware (RCH), Empire Company (EMP.A), Dollarama (DOL), Fortis Inc. (FTS) and Winpak (WPK).

1. We have reduced the weight of Constellation Software (CSU) from 11.3% to 9%.
2. We have reduced the weight of Alimentation Couche-Tard (ATD.B) from 10.6% to 9%.

 

Number Cruncher Extra: Alimentation Couche-Tard, Lassonde & Metro

In our last Number Cruncher, we covered Alimentation Couche-tard, Lassonde Industries and Metro. We will go into more detail about these titles with our software.

Here is the screener we used in our last Number Cruncher that you can play with. You also can subscribe the Inovestor for Advisors platform for free here

Let’s start with Alimentation Couche-Tard:

The company is solid despite its decrease in last year-over-year sales due to the decrease in gasoline sales. The increase in sales occurs organically, but also by acquisition, which explains its strong growth. The performance spread is also declining, but we will look at it more in detail and see why it is not a problem.

We see that the company has some volatility in its return on capital and that 2015 was a strong year. Although the software shows a decrease in the performance spread, we don’t think this is a cause for concern.


Lassonde had a good quarter and paves the way for a strong year thanks to the pandemic, which is causing consumers to spend more at the grocery store. The company has been able to generate double digits growth in earnings per share despite low single digits sales growth.

When looking at the Future growth value (FGV) of the company, one notices that the company is severely evaluated by the market. The FGV represents the growth portion of the company that an investor buys. In this case, the FGV is negative, so the investor would buy the company at a discount compared to its current activities. The market considers that the company will have a decrease in its growth in the coming years which may not be justified.

Metro has a very high score in our system. In fact, it is the Canadian company with the second highest score across all sectors. The average profit growth of 42% is certainly a reason. The risk is perceived as very low by our software. A large part of this risk is associated with evaluation, so according to our system Metro is cheap when compared to its previous performance.

Looking at the comparables, the company stands out by being the highest value for the Y-axis, which means that it is the best performer. Moreover, it is in the right-hand quadrant, which means that it is relatively inexpensive. GB is a micro cap of $3M and doesn’t have the stability of Metro.

 

If you have any questions about the article, feel free to contact Anthony :
Amenard@Inovestor.com

If you would like to sign up for a free trial and learn how Inovestor can benefit you, contact Olivier:
Olamothe@Inovestor.com

Consumer Staples Stocks With Solid EPS Growth

What are we looking for?
Canadian consumer staple stocks with vigorous long-term growth in earnings per share and robust return on capital.Since the beginning of the year, the difference in returns between consumer staples and the broader Canadian market has been striking. In the first six months of the year, the sector has kept its head above water at 0.6 per cent while the broader market stood at minus 9.1 per cent.

The second quarter rebound by the S&P/TSX Composite Index was less evident among staples stocks, but they are still comfortably ahead of the broader market. Work-from-home policies and general consumer cautiousness to avoid crowded areas continue to drive grocery spending and place consumer staples in a profitable environment.

The screen
Here is the screener we used and that you can play with

We screened companies focusing on the following criteria:

  • Market capitalization higher than $250-million;
  • Five-year average EPS growth higher than 8 per cent – we want a company that has been able to grow its earnings per share at a rapid pace;
  • Most recently reported return on capital higher than 5 per cent. We look for a business with a decent ROC, and will rank the companies by this metric. We focus on the short-term return owing to the abnormal environment created by the pandemic;
  • Positive price-to-earnings ratio – We want to eliminate unprofitable companies.

For informational purposes, we have also included: recent stock price; dividend yield; one-year price return; change in net operating profit after taxes (NOPAT) over the most recent three months; sales growth over the past 12 months; and five-year average sales growth.

TICKER NAME PRICE ($) MKT CAP ($MIL.) EPS GROWTH AVG 5Y (%) RTN ON CAPITAL (%) NOPAT CH. 3M (%) SALES CH. 12M (%) 5Y AVG Sales Growth (%) P/E DIV. YIELD (%) 1Y PRICE RTN. (%)
ATD-B-T Alimentation Couche-tard 45.75 50940 24.2 13.6 0.7 -7.1 13.5 16.2 0.6 10.6
LAS-A-T Lassonde Industries, Inc. 154.45 1070 12.6 12.3 2.1 6.5 3.8 13.2 1.7 -18.9
MRU-T Metro Inc. 56.64 14280 9.2 11.1 0.3 6.6 8.3 19.5 1.6 14.0
WN-T George Weston Limited 101.30 15650 52.2 9.5 1.0 4.6 2.1 12.1 2.1 0.1
PBH-T Premium Brands Holdings Corp 87.32 3280 32.0 8.0 0.5 18.3 25.6 36.8 2.7 -7.0
ADW-A-T Andrew Peller Limited Class 8.26 383 8.5 7.3 -1.6 0.1 3.4 15.0 2.5 -41.7
L-T Loblaw Companies Limited 67.43 24130 69.9 5.5 0.3 4.1 1.8 21.9 1.9 0.4

 

More about Inovestor

Inovestor for Advisors is a fundamental-analysis research platform specializing in the economic value-added (EVA) approach. With Inovestor, advisers can quickly identify attractive investment opportunities, outsource their stock picking by using model portfolios, and easily communicate investment decisions with clients through client-friendly reports. In addition, Inovestor allows users to create personalized filters, build custom portfolios and carry out in-depth analysis on more than 13,000 companies (Canadian and U.S. stocks, and American depositary receipts).

What we found

Convenient store giant Alimentation Couche-Tard tops our list with an ROC of 13.6 per cent. It shows a five-year EPS growth rate of 24.2 per cent and in the last year alone has increased its EPS by 29 per cent (not shown). Sales declined over the past 12 months compared with the previous year because of lower fuel volumes sold, but margins profited from the sharp decline in price of oil. The environment is certainly challenging, but the company showed resilience in its last quarterly report. Couche-Tard has an impressive track record and the P/E ratio seems quite reasonable considering its EPS growth and high return on capital. Economies of scale allow for greater margins while revenue diversification favours the stability of its returns.

Juice producer Lassonde Industries Inc. has the highest three-month NOPAT growth on our list. The company certainly has a substantial tailwind with its focus on retail products, but Lassonde also reported strong earnings growth and return on capital in the past. Twelve-month sales growth stands at 6.5 per cent, stronger than its 3.8 per cent annual sales growth over the past five years. Historically, its growth has been mostly done by acquisition owing to low growth in its industry, a strategy that seems to have paid off effectively.

Food and drug retailer Metro Inc. has realized an annual sales growth of 8.3 per cent over the past five years and 6.6 per cent in the most recent 12-month period. Its ability to increase the amount of invested capital combined with a strong return on capital while experiencing low sales volatility is the perfect recipe to a resilient business. The company has been fortunate in the crisis and could continue to benefit from increased grocery spending in the next few quarters.

Investors are advised to do further research before investing in any of the companies listed in the accompanying table.

Portfolio Manager’s July Comment For Q2 2020

In the second quarter, the S&P/TSX Composite Total Return Index increased by 17%, the S&P500 total return grew by 20.5% while the MSCI ACWI ex-USA returned 16.3%.

Q2 returns were eye-popping and are pointing to a V-shaped recovery. Growth and technology have continued their outperformance compared to the rest of the market.

In Q2, NQICA returned 15.2% leading to a year-to-date return of -13.4% versus the S&P/TSX composite which increased by 17% in Q2 and declined -7.5% on a year-to-date basis.

In Canada, the best Q2 sectors were Info-Tech up 68.2%, Materials up 41.6% and consumer discretionary up 32%. The worst sectors were telecommunication services down 2.1%, Utilities up 2.7%, and Financials up 4.8%.

The NQICA’s worst performers in the second quarter were Evertz with a return of -14.3% as the company has been affected by the shutdown of professional sports, Fortis declined by 3.9% given the company’s profile was less attractive during the recovery and Winpak with a return of -3.3% caused by lower than expected sales and profits.

On the other hand, the best results in the second quarter were TFI International with a return of 56.2% as the acquisition of Gusgo Transport has been well received by the market, Canadian Tire jumped 40.1% as the retailer kept its stores open and was able to protect its profits and Parkland Corp. grew by 39.1% helped by rising oil prices.