Friday, March 24, 2017

RELX Benjamin Graham valuation

    RELX was formerly known as Reed Elsevier.

SECTOR: [PASS]  RELX Group is neither a technology nor financial Company, and therefore this methodology is applicable. 

SALES: [PASS] The investor must select companies of "adequate size". This includes companies with annual sales greater than €260 million. RELX Group's sales of €8,412 million, based on 2016 sales, pass this test.

CURRENT RATIO: [FAIL] The current ratio must be greater than or equal to 2. Companies that meet this criterion are typically financially secure and defensive. RELX Group's current ratio €2 753m/€6 623m of 0.4 fails the test.

LONG-TERM DEBT IN RELATION TO NET CURRENT ASSETS: [FAIL]  For industrial companies, long-term debt must not exceed net current assets (current assets minus current liabilities). Companies that do not meet this criterion lack the financial stability that this methodology likes to see. The long-term debt for RELX Group is €6 206 million, while the net current assets are - €3 870 million. RELX Group fails this test.

LONG-TERM EPS GROWTH: [FAIL] Companies must increase their EPS by at least 30% over a ten-year period and EPS must not have been negative for any year within the last 5 years. Companies with this type of growth tend to be financially secure and have proven themselves over time. RELX Group's profits have been flat over the past 10 years and fails this test.

Earnings Yield: [FAIL] The Earnings/Price (inverse P/E) %, based on the lesser of the current Earnings Yield or the Yield using average earnings over the last 3 fiscal years, must be "acceptable", which this methodology states is greater than 6,5%. Stocks with higher earnings yields are more defensive by nature. RELX Group's E/P of 5% (using the last 3 years Earnings) fails this test.

Graham Number value: [FAIL] The Price/Book ratio must also be reasonable. That is the Graham number value must be greater than the market price. RELX Group has a Graham number of (15 x €0,7 EPS x €1,27 Book Value) = €4,4 

Dividend: €0,42/€14,3 = 2,4%

Conclusion: The RELX Group earns a lot on its book value (it has a high return on equity), but it is not a stock for the Defensive investor, especially at the current price of over 17 Euro

See: for more in depth, qualitative analysis in Dutch.

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