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Tickers in this Article: QCOR, ARMH, NFLX, MDVN, UHAL, CHDN, ONXX
This morning has been rocky for the market. The Nasdaq has decreased 0.8%; the S&P 500 has slipped 0.5%; and the Dow is down 0.7%. The recent surge in popularity of technological stocks has launched the Nasdaq Composite Index into the spotlight, making it one of the premier indexes in the world.

The biggest movers traded on the NASDAQ so far are:
CompanyMarket CapPercentage Change
Questcor Pharmaceuticals (Nasdaq:QCOR)$2.59 billion+9.8%
ARM Holdings plc (Nasdaq:ARMH)$12.5 billion-7.7%
Netflix (Nasdaq:NFLX)$3.32 billion-7.4%
Medivation (Nasdaq:MDVN)$3.86 billion+4.4%
AMERCO (Nasdaq:UHAL)$1.82 billion+4.4%
Churchill Downs (Nasdaq:CHDN)$998.8 million-3.8%
Onyx Pharmaceuticals (Nasdaq:ONXX)$4.68 billion+3.8%
Broker Summary: E-Trade Financial

Questcor Pharmaceuticals (Nasdaq:QCOR) has risen 9.8% and is currently trading at $47.71 per share. So far today, the company's volume is three million shares, 2.5 times the average daily volume. Volume indicates the level of interest that investors have in a company at its current price. Investment valuation ratios can be very useful in estimating whether a stock price is too high, reasonable or a bargain investment opportunity. One of the most important estimates of stock market valuation is the price/earnings ratio (P/E ratio). P/E ratio for QCOR is 21.1. A high P/E ratio indicates a stock that is expensive, while a low P/E ratio indicates a stock that is cheap. SEE: Can Investors Trust the P/E Ratio?

Slipping 7.7%, ARM Holdings plc (Nasdaq:ARMH) is currently trading at $25.14 per share. The company's volume for the day so far is 4.7 million shares. High volume indicates a lot of investor interest while low volume indicates the opposite. Valuation ratios allow the investor to make a quick determination as to a company's investment value. The price/earnings to growth (PEG) ratio compares a company's P/E ratio to its earnings-per-share growth rate, which tells you whether or not you are getting a good value when purchasing a stock with a high price/earnings ratio (P/E ratio). ARMH has a PEG ratio of 3.19. Because of the adjustment for earnings growth rate, the PEG ratio is somewhat more useful than many formulas for comparing companies in different industries.

At $55.29, Netflix (Nasdaq:NFLX) has slipped 7.4%. At 8.1 million shares, the company's volume so far today is 2.5 times its average over the past three months. Volume is also used as a secondary indicator to help confirm what the price movement is suggesting. Understanding investment valuation ratios allows an investor to assess the true value of an individual stock. The price/book value ratio, often expressed simply as "price-to-book", provides investors a way to compare the market value, or what they are paying for each share, to a conservative measure of the value of the firm. NFLX has a P/B ratio of 4.46 which shows that its share price is higher than its book value. This may be a sign that the company is overvalued. P/B has its shortcomings but is still widely used as a valuation metric, more relevant for use by investors looking at capital-intensive or finance-related businesses, such as banks; book value does not carry much meaning for service-based firms with few tangible assets. SEE: Investment Valuation Ratios: Price/Book Value Ratio

After an increase of 4.4%, Medivation (Nasdaq:MDVN) has reached a current price of $109.49. So far today, the company's volume is 1.2 million shares. This is greater than yesterday's volume of 1.1 million shares. If a stock price makes a big move up or down, volume lets us know the significance of that move. Investors can use valuation ratios as tools to estimate what kind of deal a particular investment is. The price/sales ratio measures a company's stock market price by its revenues. The P/S ratio for MDVN is 30.57, which is relatively high. This could be a good sign if the share price increases. A limitation of the P/S ratio is that the price component measures only stock market captialization, while sales are a function of the entire capital structure, potentially leading to wide differences between levered and unlevered companies.

Rising 4.4%, AMERCO (Nasdaq:UHAL) is currently trading at $97.10 per share. So far today, the company's volume is 18,967 shares, one times the current daily average. A stock's volume conveys how excited investors are about it. It is important for an investor to estimate the value of any potential or existing investment; valuation ratios make this easier. The easy-to-calculate debt ratio is helpful to investors looking for a quick take on the leverage for a company. UHAL's debt ratio of 77% is fairly high. This means that the company's cash flow is significantly impacted by paying off principal and interest and that any negative change in performance or rise in interest rates could result in default. As with all financial ratios, a company's debt ratio should be compared with the industry average or similar companies.

Churchill Downs (Nasdaq:CHDN) has fallen 3.8% and is currently trading at $55.05 per share. So far today, 27,324 shares have changed hands. The trading volume for a stock indicates the level of investor interest. A wide array of ratios can be used by investors to estimate the attractiveness of a potential or existing investment and get an idea of its valuation. To a large degree, the debt-equity (D/E) ratio provides another vantage point on a company's leverage position, in this case, comparing total liabilities to shareholders' equity, as opposed to total assets in the debt ratio. The debt-equity ratio of 11% is relatively low. Companies with low D/E ratios are more attractive to investors because they are better able to protect their business interests in times of decline. This easy-to-calculate ratio provides a general indication of a company's equity-liability relationship and is helpful to investors looking for a quick take on a company's leverage.

Onyx Pharmaceuticals (Nasdaq:ONXX) is at $74.65 per share after an increase of 3.8%. The company's volume is currently 542,261 shares for the day, 0.4 times the average volume over the last three months. If a stock price moves on high volume, this means that the change is a significant one. A company's value as an investment is more easily estimated using valuation ratios such as the price to earnings (P/E) ratio, the price to earnings growth (PEG) ratio, the price to sales (P/S) ratio, the price to book (P/B) ratio, and the dividend yield. A company's capitalization (not to be confused with its market capitalization) is the term used to describe the makeup of a company's permanent or long-term capital, which consists of both long-term debt and shareholders' equity. ONXX has a low capitalization ratio of 19.3%. Low leverage is a significant balance sheet strength, a sign of a less risky investment. Prudent use of leverage (debt) increases the financial resources available to a company for growth and expansion.

The Bottom Line On any given day, a particular stock may see positive or negative change in its share price. Paying close attention to the previous ratios will help you identify key times to adjust your strategy. Keep in mind that all these ratios should be compared against historical numbers and industry information in order to get a more complete picture.

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