Big Tobacco is Clearly Underestimated
Since declaring about an $18B share buy back, Philip Morris International has estimated by 2.5%, but has not surpassed the S&P 500 by more than 250 basis points. Cigarette manufacturers are noted for their dividend yields and low variability. The three largest cigarette producers as Altria, Philip Morris and Reynolds American are well-placed and are able to surpass even the broader estimates within the coming three years.
Philip Morris may seem quite costly, but it is the same cash flow machine as its tobacco competitors. It has greatly boosted free cash flow from about $7.2B in 2009 to of $9.6B in 2011. The company has to demonstrate a 12% per year increase over the coming six years. If it shows a 2.5% continual growth rate and an 8% weighted-average cost of capital (WACC), the value stock might constitute $120. This WACC is justified, taking into account the company’s increased dividend yield. Only if the company is to increase constantly at 2% and have a WACC of about 9% would the present value be justified, if taking into account past performance.
It is evident that the past performance is not a good indicator of coming estimates, but cigarette manufacturers are stable and, if something happens, Philip Morris International has more space and ability for market distribution. The Marlboro producer has specially spun off from Altria a few years ago in order to aim at smokers outside the U.S. This move seems to have paid dividends, with the stock growth of more than 75% since being spun off.
The cigarette giants as Altria and Reynolds allow even higher dividend yields at about 4.5% and 5.5%. The companies also considered leader in free cash flow. Reynolds and Altria didn’t realize to demonstrate the same momentum in free cash flow increase as Philip Morris shows over the last four years. In fact, since the Philip Morris spin-off, Altria and Reynolds have estimated at 35% and 51% respectively. It is a certain fact that Big Tobacco will always be affected by tax increases, but this is already something common and has been reflected in stock prices. Health graphic warnings are unlikely to become a true reality, mostly when are conducted so many researches on tobacco harm.By Clark Moore, Staff Writer Copyright © 2012 Hot-Cigs.com All rights reserved.