Zacks
0
All posts from Zacks
Zacks in Our Research. Your Success.,

Should Value Investors Pick AllianceBernstein (AB) Stock?

Value investing is easily one of the most popular ways to find great stocks in any market environment. After all, who wouldn’t want to find stocks that are either flying under the radar and are compelling buys, or offer up tantalizing discounts when compared to fair value?

One way to find these companies is by looking at several key metrics and financial ratios, many of which are crucial in the value stock selection process. Let’s put AllianceBernstein Holding L.P. AB stock into this equation and find out if it is a good choice for value-oriented investors right now, or if investors subscribing to this methodology should look elsewhere for top picks:

PE Ratio

A key metric that value investors always look at is the Price to Earnings Ratio, or PE for short. This shows us how much investors are willing to pay for each dollar of earnings in a given stock, and is easily one of the most popular financial ratios in the world. The best use of the PE ratio is to compare the stock’s current PE ratio with: a) where this ratio has been in the past; b) how it compares to the average for the industry/sector; and c) how it compares to the market as a whole.

On this front, AllianceBernstein has a trailing twelve months PE ratio of 12.45, as you can see in the chart below:



This level actually compares pretty favorably with the market at large, as the PE for the S&P 500 stands at about 20.63. If we focus on the long-term PE trend, AllianceBernstein’s current PE level puts it below its midpoint over the past five years, with the number having risen rapidly over the past few months.




Further, the stock’s PE also compares favorably with the Zacks classified Financial - Investment Management industry’s trailing twelve months PE ratio, which stands at 17.24. At the very least, this indicates that the stock is significantly undervalued right now, compared to its peers.



We should also point out that AllianceBernstein has a forward PE ratio (price relative to this year’s earnings) of just 11.96, so it is fair to say that a slightly more value-oriented path may be ahead for AllianceBernstein stock in the near term.

P/S Ratio

Another key metric to note is the Price/Sales ratio. This approach compares a given stock’s price to its total sales, where a lower reading is generally considered better. Some people like this metric more than other value-focused ones because it looks at sales, something that is far harder to manipulate with accounting tricks than earnings.

Right now, AllianceBernstein has a P/S ratio of about 0.79. This is fairly lower than the S&P 500 average, which comes in at 3.20 right now.



If anything, this suggests some level of undervalued trading—at least compared to historical norms.

Broad Value Outlook

In aggregate, AllianceBernstein currently has a Zacks Value Style Score of ‘A’, putting it into the top 20% of all stocks we cover from this look. This makes AllianceBernstein a solid choice for value investors, and some of its other key metrics make this pretty clear too.

For example, the Price to Book (P/B) ratio for AllianceBernstein is just 1.57, a level that is lower than the industry average of 1.80. Clearly, AB is a good choice on the value front from multiple angles.

What About the Stock Overall?

Though AllianceBernstein might be a good choice for value investors, there are plenty of other factors to consider before investing in this name. In particular, it is worth noting that the company has a Growth grade of ‘B’ and a Momentum score of ‘B’. This gives AB a Zacks VGM score—or its overarching fundamental grade—of ‘A’. (You can read more about the Zacks Style Scores here >>)

Meanwhile, the company’s recent earnings estimates are also positive. The current year and next has seen two estimates going higher in the past 30 days compared to none lower.

As a result, the current year consensus estimate has risen by 2.5% in the past one month, while the next year estimate has also risen higher by 2.3%. You can see the consensus estimate trend and recent price action for the stock in the chart below:

AllianceBernstein Holding L.P. Price and Consensus

This positive trend is the reason why the stock has just a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy) and why we are looking for in-line performance from the company in the near term.

Bottom Line

AllianceBernstein is an inspired choice for value investors, as it is hard to beat its incredible lineup of statistics on this front. Boasting a good industry rank (top 32% out of more than 250 industries) and a solid Zacks Rank, the company deserves attention right now. In fact, over the past one year, the Zacks Financial - Investment Management industry has clearly outperformed the broader market, as you can see below:



So, it might pay for value investors to delve deeper into the company’s prospects, as fundamentals indicate that this stock could be a compelling pick.

Will You Make a Fortune on the Shift to Electric Cars?

Here's another stock idea to consider. Much like petroleum 150 years ago, lithium power may soon shake the world, creating millionaires and reshaping geo-politics. Soon electric vehicles (EVs) may be cheaper than gas guzzlers. Some are already reaching 265 miles on a single charge.

With battery prices plummeting and charging stations set to multiply, one company stands out as the #1 stock to buy according to Zacks research.

It's not the one you think.

See This Ticker Free >>


Want the latest recommendations from Zacks Investment Research? Today, you can download 7 Best Stocks for the Next 30 Days. Click to get this free report
 
AllianceBernstein Holding L.P. (AB): Free Stock Analysis Report
 
To read this article on Zacks.com click here.