The Intelligent Investor – 18 – A Comparison of Eight Pairs of Companies

We should take care when company deliver their promises but actually traded at more than their promises.  Companies that have to deliver a higher sale, earnings growth then they will be available at higher multiple. But we should distinguish between higher and reasonable multiples. Stocks which does not have underlying soundness then those will become speculative and riskier.

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When sales growth keeps coming people ignore the underlying quality of business and financial. As the company grows, its growth becomes slower otherwise the company will eat up the entire world. As growth gets slower, multiple also gets lower. We need to understand that we cannot provide similar multiple to the same company at every phase of the company. Higher quality growth commands a higher multiple but as growth slows down, multiple for the same business gets lower down.

One of the air-cooler manufacturing company of India

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We can see that as growth slowdown in the FY2018 and 2019 then P/E multiple of the company has fallen down rapidly.

Comparison of Real Estate VS Pharma VS FMCG

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We can see that in the Jan-2008 Real estate companies (Just two companies) MCap was ~4x of 10 pharma companies and ~2x of 10 FMCG companies. Pharma and FMCG companies have posted growth and real estate companies are not able to grow at the same peace. In addition, real estate companies were traded at sky-high valuations which resulted in an average return of ~-91% whereas Pharma (*not taken from high mcap) and FMCG has posted average return of ~963% and 1109% respectively.

If we look at the fall in price too low of 2008 then also pharma and FMCG have outperformed real estate.

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If we see the quality companies i.e. pharma and FMCG then those fall less than the entire market fall, Nifty fell by 50%+ in the year 2008.

In the Short term, any stocks win the popularity of the market but in the long-term earnings matters. If we see that fancy business has does not perform in the long term but boring business such as FMCG has outperformed in the long term.

If we look at the P/E multiple of DLF and Unitech then that was 36.69x and 82.22x in high of the year 2008 and that fall to 4.67x and 4.21x respectively. Whereas Lupin, Sun Pharma, HUL, ITC, and Nestle was traded at P/E of 13.54x, 17.91x, 26.23x, 29.34x, 26.90x and fall to 12.50x, 17.52x, 26.71x, 22.28x, 24.80x respectively.

Market panic provides us with an opportunity to enter into such business which helps us to get more returns. If we have bought the above-mentioned pharma and FMCG companies at a high of the year 2008 and then bought again at low of the year 2008 then-current average return of pharma and FMCG has been increased by ~347% and 137% respectively.

For the current scenario, if we see HUL MCap vs 10 Pharma companies then HUL has a 24% higher MCap from pharma 10 companies.

Pharma VS FMCG

This analysis is given by many of the investors and fund managers but if we look at the return ratios then average RONW% & ROCE% of top 25 pharma companies is ~20% and average RONW% & ROCE% of top 10 pharma companies is ~16% whereas RONW% & ROCE% for the HUL is 80% and 90% respectively.

Pharma VS HUL

So, if we look at the growth and profitability of the top 10 pharma and HUL then does not has a wide difference but asset quality is far good for HUL compared to the top 10 pharma which must need to look. This comparison is not similar to real estate and pharma and FMCG whereas real estate has poor asset quality compared to the pharma and FMCG but here HUL has a better asset quality. If pharma has a huge earning growth compared to the HUL with 15-20% of return ratios then we can look into it. If we look at the ~73 listed FMCG then those companies do not have similar asset quality then they do not have a similar kind of valuation but those have, they command.

Closed watch also shows real-time sometimes in a day that does not mean, we consider that watch as a good watch.

If we compared sugar companies’ vs tea & coffee companies then it can be a good comparison where sugar companies are available more than double in MCap.

Sugar VS Tea & Coffee

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Disclosure – Companies mentioned in the article are just for an example & educational purpose. It is not a buy/sell/ hold recommendation. 

Read for more detail: The Intelligent Investor by Benjamin Graham, Jason Zweig

The Intelligent Investor 7 Portfolio Policy for the Enterprising Investor: The Positive Side

Enterprising investors are willing to put more attention and efforts for generating a higher return.

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Generally, an intelligent investor buys and keep holding common stock when it has a cheapness and they sell a common stock when it becomes overpriced. After selling off the stock they transfer to the bond and wait till another opportunity of common stock available with the cheapness.

General Market Policy—Formula Timing

This is an approach of investing timing of the market. The market keeps on fluctuating and taking a benefit of those fluctuations to our favor adds additional value. It is very difficult to forecast the future market level for a consistent period. When we look back towards any situation then it looks easier to predict but when we are passing through the situation then it is very difficult to predict.

Growth-Stock Approach

Growth stocks are the companies which have shown a growth better than an average. The problem with such kind of companies is they have given good growth into the past and we have to assume that they will keep on doing the same into the future. But such kind of stocks selection needs huge careful attention from the investors. As the bigger companies start to grow at a slower pace compared to the smaller companies. But it is also a fact that if the company is a leader with the availability of competitive advantage in the market then it has a huge probability of growth. We need to careful with what we are paying for buying a growth. If we pay a sky-high price for the prevailing growth then also, we have to suffer through the company grows.

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If we have proven wrong with our assumption of future growth and also, we have paid a higher amount for the business, then it will be a dangerously affect to our wealth. Growth stocks can create our fortune or can spoil our fortune. If our assumption for the future growth proven right and also, we have bought the stock at a proper valuation then fortune into the growth stock can be created. Many times, the company has a temporary problem, then it will be available at a relatively cheaper valuation. When larger companies have adversity, they have a resource and brainpower to come out from the adversity and market responds quickly to such improvement to the larger company.

One of the two-wheeler company of India

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The company which has a negative cash conversion cycle, availability of float, market leader since many decades, traded at 10%+ of earning yield with higher return ratio, market participants having a fear of electric vehicle disruption.

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One of the MNC FMCG company of India

Company’s one of the flagship product got banned which contributes decent revenue to the company. Also, no other competitor gets success in the same product at the same level. Company has a higher return ratio, good brand over the globe, successful track record.

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Mr. Graham mentioned regarding a cyclical business

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We need to bought such businesses during the bad time at higher multiplier and need to sell it at a good time at a lower multiplier. During the bad time, the profitability of the company gets depressed which resulted in the higher multiple to the company and reversely, when time is good, profitability gets improvement which resulted in the lower multiple.

One of the sugar company

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When we want to get an above-average return into the investment, then our investment needs to be proper, sound enough to avoid risk and we need to adopt a policy which is different from most of the investors or speculators are using.

Bargain issues are those which are selling below its true worth. Now, for calculation of bargain – first, we need to forecast future earnings and giving it an appropriate multiple for arriving at a future market price. If the current market price seems lower than future market price then we can consider it as a bargain common stock. And second, where we need to focus more on the net realization of the asset value and net working capital (Working capital – all obligations) with the growth into the future earnings. Also, the current result is disappointing (future result can be improved) and unpopularity among the stock price creates a bargain opportunity. During a bear run, people do not focus on the companies which are not a leader, because they have a fear and belief that leader can provide safety. So that companies other than leaders will be available at a cheaper bargain price. We should focus that whether these companies can generate a fair return on invested capital or not and whether that generated return will be above the cost of capital or not. Such companies require a bull market, changes in policies, changes to the management, acquisition of smaller bargain companies by a larger one, etc. for reaching the fair valuation.

A special situation is also one of the ways to create a return on our investment. Special situations are different from the usual part of investing. Here, we need a different kind of process and different level of mentality compared to the usual one. This strategy includes demerger, merger, arbitrage, delisting, buyback, right issues, etc.

When we select to be an aggressive investor rather than a defensive investor then we require a thorough knowledge of businesses, how to value it etc. There is not a middle way between aggressive and defensive investment. And those who are involved in the middle way, they get a disappointment to the result due to the lack of requiring time and knowledge.

Disclosure – Companies mentioned in the article is just for an example & educational purpose. It is not a buy/sell/ hold recommendation. 

Read for more detail: The Intelligent Investor by Benjamin Graham, Jason Zweig

WARREN BUFFETT’S LETTER – 1987

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Mr.Buffett indicates the behavior of most of the investors and which should be avoided.

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Companies which can perform well and earned 20% above return on equity, all those companies have also performed well into stock-market in terms of stock prices. But such companies are few and we need to identify those and sit tight with holding those companies. Companies which have a good earning power then those companies do not require the debt.

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Mr.Buffett indicated that they do not cut down budget as the profit of the company falls. He has always focused on the employees and their welfare. We have seen that the Textile division of the company remains to continue for the longer period only due to largest employees’ works at the company.

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Whenever the shortage of a particular commodity arises then prices of particular commodity start rising and commodity companies start getting benefits of price raised.

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We should enter into the commodity companies when there is an excess supply and price of the particular commodity is traded lower which having a lower profitability, lower return ratio, such lower prices bring bankruptcy to weak companies etc. and should try to exit when shortage of supply and price of the particular commodity is traded on a higher side. But generally, we forget it and enter while the financial matrix of the commodity companies already improved which creates wealth destruction.

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Major mistakes made by an investor in the cyclical company is that they choose to invest when commodity prices are at higher level, return ratio improves well, profitability margin improves, etc. We should try to avoid such mistake.

Additionally, Mr.Buffett explained the philosophy of Ben Graham to see a market. Ben Graham quote market as Mr.Market and price moment as the mood of Mr.Market.

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Mr.Buffett has made a point regarding when he will ready to sell his existing security in which he has made an investment. These points can be used as a checklist for selling decision of our investment.

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People have misunderstood saying of Mr.Buffett and they keep on believing that Mr.Buffett never sell his investment and keep on holding it forever. But in reality, it is fact. He is also ready to sell securities when the above-mentioned criterion matched with his investment and he holds till the above-mentioned criterion does not match.

Warren Buffett’s Letters 1957 – 2012

BIBLIOPHILE: THE MOST IMPORTANT THING BY HOWARD MARKS “AWARENESS OF THE PENDULUM”

In the previous article, we have seen that everything moves in a cycle. And if we cannot able to understand the cycle, then we must pay for it. In this article, I am going to discuss on moments of the pendulum and how we can take benefits of its moments.

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We have seen pendulum and its moments. Generally, pendulums do not always remain to the extremes, majority time pendulum stays near to its main point. And whenever pendulum moves towards its extreme then again it will come back towards either extreme. The force of the swing of the pendulum itself responsible for its reversal.

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Generally, our behavior towards the situation is responsible for the swing of the pendulum towards extremes and also responsible for coming back towards its mean point. Investors see the situation with either greed or fear and reach to the conclusion. When people are greedy, they become more optimistic toward the situation and they want to pay any premium for getting that situation favorable. Vice-versa, when people feel fear, then they are not ready to buy the stock at the cheapest value.

Excess greed creates risk taking behavior and excess fear creates a risk aversion among the people.

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As there are two major risks in investing – 1) Risk of losing our capital and, 2) Risk of losing opportunities. But when pendulum moves towards the extreme end, then one of the above risks will dominate our investment decisions.

When pendulum at extreme bullish situation then

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And when the pendulum nears to the extreme bearish situation then

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When things happen in a good manner, then people become more greedy and confident about the situations which bring optimism towards the particular situations. People forget the involvement of risk and ready to pay anything for getting the assets. Vice-versa when things not happening in a good manner, then people are more fearful towards the situations and realize the inherent risk. Such situations bring bargains for the assets.

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Sugar prices

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We can able to see that when prices of sugar were low, people not ready to make an investment in the sector, etc. at such situations provide us a bargain opportunities and when things start getting well, we can able to make a good return. Vice-versa when everyone knows about the story, then that story is there in the price. We cannot able to make an abnormal return or chances are high to lose of our capital.

Wise people recognize the bargain first, then others will follow them and run behind the assets for buying it at any premium price.

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We have seen three phases of the bull market. As similar to it, the bear market also has three phases.

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When everyone fears with the negative news, events and they start thinking that such worst situations remain forever. Major bottom occurs over such situations. When everyone forgets that tide can again come in and such situations provide us a bargain opportunity. Vice-versa when everyone thinks that good time never going to end and they can generate higher returns easily, people forget that tide can go out then major top gets formed.

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Those people who understand swing of the pendulum then they have protected their capital as well as made the huge return during the year 2009 and year 2014.

When everyone fears from the situations and think such worst remain forever. When such situations arise then the person who analyses and conclude that things can go better he can generate a better return with lower risk. Vice-versa when everyone thinks that things remain better forever than that is a period of painful losses.

The pendulum never continues to swing towards an extreme, it will be reversed from extreme. Extreme swing of the pendulum is itself responsible for the swing towards the opposite direction of the pendulum.

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Read for more detail: The Most Important Thing Illuminated by Howard Marks