Amidst the hoopla over the Dow Jones Industrial Average breaking through its all-time high, and the S&P 500 Index not far behind, value investors feel that the market is a little frothy. Investors who follow Benjamin Graham and Warren Buffett understand the merits of obtaining a meaningful margin of safety from stocks, which is to say they know that even the best companies can be poor investments if too high a price is paid.
If you count yourself among this crowd, you might be understandably frustrated by the lack of readily available bargain stocks in the current market environment. Fortunately, we’ve had a few notable companies release quarterly earnings recently. These stocks had some good things to say in their reports and for the most part, happen to be trading for valuations that won’t raise your blood pressure.
After a horrible down day, is this tech giant cheap?
Oracle Corporation (NASDAQ:ORCL) stockholders received a rude awakening on March 21 when they found their company fell 9% on the day after releasing quarterly earnings that did not meet Wall Street expectations. On the surface, Oracle’s results certainly didn’t seem terrible. It’s been well publicized that the last year has been a tough one for technology companies.
Third quarter total revenues declined 1% year-over-year, but GAAP earnings per share increased 6% versus the previous year’s third quarter. There’s a good chance this disappointing quarter may be a one-off. It’s worth noting that Oracle reported 4.2% growth in full-year 2012 revenue, and the company has grown its revenues by 17% compounded annually since 2009.
Buy NIKE, Inc. (NYSE:NKE)? Just do it
On the flip side, Nike stockholders had to be pleased with their company’s results, after which the stock soared 11% in one day. Nike reported net revenue growth of 9%, to $6.2 billion, and 20% diluted earnings per share growth.
There was a lot to like about NIKE, Inc. (NYSE:NKE)'s announcement, as its business is executing well and management is deploying shareholder money effectively. Not only did organic sales increase, but the company’s bottom line also benefited from gross margin expansion and reduced shares outstanding. It appears that Nike can do no wrong at this point. Its shares are up more than 10% over the past 52 weeks and are sitting at a split-adjusted all-time high.