Friday, November 9, 2007

Stocks look cheap to me

I added to Cognizant Tech CTSH and VASCO Data Security VDSI today. I can't help but think both of these are just far too cheap. The market's obviously telling me I'm wrong and maybe I'm discounting some things that I should take more seriously, but these (and others) just look out of whack to me.

I read through Cognizant's conference call and while there's concern about IT budgets in Q4, we're talking about a company whose revenue increased 48% in Q3, EPS increased 60%, and reading between the lines the management seemed to be telling me the business has strong prospects looking into 2008. The company's PE is @30 right now, and it's forward PE is closer to 20. It's not often I can buy companies like this at these prices. I increased shares another 40% today.

Here's some numbers I like (current data doesn't include current quarter. y1 = last fiscal year. y2 = previous fiscal year, etc)

Return on Equity
curr 25.3
y1 26.0
y2 28.5
y3 27.5
y4 26.1

Book value growth
curr 47%
y1 45%
y2 51%
y3 57%
y4 57%
y5 63%

Sales per share change
curr: 48% current quarter change
y1 55%
y2 45%
y3 52%
y4 52%
y5 24%

I also am making a big move into VASCO Data Security VDSI. They've gotten hammered and I'm not as comfortable with the story there and expect greater volatility, but revenue and earnings are growing at over 60% clip, so they could still slow considerably here and still justify the current 33 PE. This is a smaller company, without as established trends as CTSH, but Return on Equity and Total Capital seems to be settling in around 40% over the past couple of years. They're clearly getting excellent returns on their capital.

Anyhow, I guess I look around and am just seeing so much cheap stuff out there. CTSH and VDSI were buys today, but looking to keep putting more cash to work moving forward.

I'm keeping an eye on the Garmin GRMN story. Sortof hoping GRMN drops the buyout offer for Tele Atlas and instead works with Nokia long term to have the Navtech maps give them the data they need. I honestly don't see why a partnership couldn't work, instead of having to buy one of the map providers outright. Garmin clearly has good places to put their capital to work other than a buyout offer.

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