Stocks to Study (4/18/2015)

Screening Results (April 2015)

Shopping In Prairie Dog Mode

If you’ve been to Devil’s Tower, watched enough Animal Planet and/or visited your local zoo, you’ve seen vigilance. Think about the images or scenes of prairie dogs where a “town” or “clan” hears an unusual noise. Immediately, several of the critters will stand on their hind legs and they’ll generally look East, West, North and South as they collaborate to detect potential danger.

Vigilance in Context

Same thing here. Although we’re reluctant to refer to our community of investors as animals, we know that we’re well served when we remain vigilant.

In this case, we’re continually mindful of the parade of opinions from the rhinos that cover and exude/spew opinions on our companies. For this month’s screening results, we hit the ejector button on any qualifying companies that failed to exceed the averages of a number of forecasts.

“Ignore the words issued by analysts (buy/sell/hold) but heed their numbers and homework.” — Walter Kirchberger

The companies in the accompanying list are sorted by MANIFEST Rank Descending and therefore have strong return forecasts and quality rankings. Every week we check our update batch for drifts (downward and upward) in expectations — heeding their numbers. This is little different as we value consensus and elevated financial strength under these market conditions. For perspective, the average Value Line low total return forecast is 3.7%. The average P/FV at Morningstar is 104% and S&P checks in at 99%. The average 1-year total return expectation from ACE is 13.5%. S&P sees the year ahead at 9.5% and Goldman Sachs (GS) is a little more grumpy and pessimistic at 7.0%.

All of a sudden, this whole investing thing was no longer just a hobby. (grin)