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Tickers in this Article: DEO, CCH, GMCR, ANDE, LO, MJN, BUD
The Nasdaq has increased 0.1%, the S&P 500 has moved little and the Dow has moved up 0.1% after the morning's trading.

The biggest movers in the Consumer/Non-Cyclical sector (XLP) (+0.6%) are:
CompanyMarket CapPercentage Change
Diageo plc (NYSE:DEO)$74.98 billion+2.8%
Coca-Cola HBC S.A (NYSE:CCH)$7.09 billion-2.7%
Green Mountain Coffee Roasters (Nasdaq:GMCR)$4.8 billion-2.6%
Andersons (Nasdaq:ANDE)$740.3 million-2%
Lorillard (NYSE:LO)$15.29 billion+1.9%
Mead Johnson (NYSE:MJN)$15.08 billion+1.7%
Anheuser-Busch InBev NV (NYSE:BUD)$136.78 billion+1.3%
Forex Broker Summary: Forex Capital Markets (FXCM)

Diageo plc (NYSE:DEO) is at $111.99 per share after an increase of 2.8%. The company's volume is currently 499,746 shares for the day, 0.7 times the current three-month average. Price change alone is not enough to know how a stock is doing. Volume is an important secondary indicator used to confirm trends suggested by price movement. 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. The debt ratio is calculated by dividing total liabilities by total assets. DEO has a debt ratio of 75%, which is on the high side. As such, the company is highly leveraged and not highly liquid. However, one thing to note with this ratio: it isn't a pure measure of a company's debt (or indebtedness), as it also includes operational liabilities, such as accounts payable and taxes payable.

Slipping 2.7%, Coca-Cola HBC S.A (NYSE:CCH) is currently trading at $18.83 per share. The company's volume for the day so far is 2,700 shares. At this rate, trading activity will likely be down from yesterday when 39,923 shares changed hands. The trading volume for a stock indicates the level of investor interest. Investors can use valuation ratios as tools to estimate what kind of deal a particular investment is. 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. CCH has a D/E ratio of 78%. The D/E ratio percentage provides a much more dramatic perspective on a company's leverage position than the debt ratio percentage.

Green Mountain Coffee Roasters (Nasdaq:GMCR) is trading at $30.06 per share, down 2.6%. At 1.8 million shares, the company's volume so far today is 0.2 times the average daily volume. When a stock price moves up or down, watching the volume is a good way of identifying how significant that shift is. Investment valuation ratios can be very useful in determining the value of a stock, but it is very important to keep in mind that while some financial ratios have general rules (or a broad application), in most instances it is a prudent practice to look at a company's historical performance and use peer company/industry comparisons to put any given company's ratio in perspective. The capitalization ratio measures the debt component of the capital structure, or capitalization of a company (i.e., the sum of long-term debt liabilities and shareholder equity) to support operations and growth. GMCR has a low capitalization ratio of 15.3%. A very low capitalization ratio might be a sign that the company is stagnating and reducing the potential earnings for shareholders. This ratio is considered to be one of the more meaningful of the "debt" ratios - it delivers the key insight into the use of leverage by a company.

At $39, Andersons (Nasdaq:ANDE) has slipped 2%. The company is currently trading a volume of 60,341 shares. If a stock price moves on high volume, this means that the change is a significant one. While investment valuation ratios are useful tools in estimating the attractiveness of an investment, remember that it is important to look at a company's historical performance and compare the company ratios with its competitors and industry overall. In a nutshell, the price/sales ratio shows how much Wall Street values every dollar of the company's sales. The P/S ratio for ANDE is 0.17, which is relatively low. A company with a lower P/S ratio is generally considered more attractive, since investors are paying less for each dollar of sales. 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.

Lorillard (NYSE:LO) has risen 1.9% and is currently trading at $119.27 per share. At 474,159 shares, the company's volume so far today is 0.4 times the average volume over the last three months. If a stock price makes a big move up or down, volume lets us know the significance of that move. When estimating the value of a particular investment, valuation ratios provide a good basis for assessing the value of an individual stock. A company's price/earnings ratio (P/E ratio) provides a measure of how expensive or cheap a stock is. LO's P/E ratio of 14.4 is under the industry average of 15.62. Companies with low P/E ratios may find it easier to surprise the market to the upside, even if their financial performance is not as strong as that of companies with high P/E ratios. From the investor's perspective, a stock with a lower ratio is relatively cheaper than a stock with a higher ratio. SEE: Can Investors Trust the P/E Ratio?

After rising 1.7%, Mead Johnson (NYSE:MJN) is currently trading at a share price of $75.25. So far today, the company's volume is 708,687 shares. This is about the same trading activity as there was yesterday. Volume indicates the level of interest that investors have in a company at its current price. 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. As with most ratios, comparisons of company price/earnings to growth ratios (PEG ratios) are most appropriate for similar companies. MJN's PEG ratio is 2.63. While P/E ratios are important indicators of market value, a high P/E in and of itself is not bad because it may indicate a company whose earnings are growing very rapidly, so many investors look at the PEG ratio in order to get an idea of whether or not a particular P/E ratio is justified by underlying earnings growth.

After an increase of 1.3%, Anheuser-Busch InBev NV (NYSE:BUD) has reached a current price of $86.28. At 675,182 shares, the company's volume so far today is consistent with its current daily average. In technical analysis, trading volume is used to determine the strength of a market indicator. Valuation ratios like 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 are useful in determining how attractive a potential or existing investment is. The price/book value ratio provides a way of evaluating whether a stock is relatively cheap or expensive. The P/B ratio for BUD is 3.68, indicating that the stock is trading for more than its book value. This high share price relative to asset value is likely to indicate that the company has been earning a very high return on its assets. A weakness of the P/B value ratio is that while the price component is easily determined by looking at the stock quote, the book value component is more difficult to estimate and more open to individual interpretation and analysis. SEE: How Buybacks Warps The Price-To-Book Ratio

The Bottom Line The nature of the market is such that stocks will have good days and bad days. Daily stock performance should be weighed against historical performance and put in context of the market overall. 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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