Benjamin Graham taught that Intelligent Investors must do a thorough fundamental analysis of investment opportunities to determine their intrinsic value and inherent risk. Â This isÂ best done by utilizing a systematic approach to analysis that will provide investors with a sense of how a specific company compares to another companyÂ or by reviewing theÂ 5 Highest Dividend Yields Among Undervalued Companies for the Defensive Investor – September 2014.Â By using theÂ ModernGraham methodÂ one can review a company’s historical accomplishments and determine an intrinsic value that can be compared across industries. Â What follows is a specific look at howÂ Agilent Technologies Inc. (A)Â fares in theÂ ModernGraham valuation model.
Company ProfileÂ (obtained fromÂ Google Finance):Â Agilent Technologies, Inc. (Agilent) is a measurement company providing bio-analytical and electronic measurement solutions to the communications, electronics, life sciences and chemical analysis industries. During the fiscal year ended October 31, 2011 (fiscal 2011), it had three business segments: electronic measurement business, chemical analysis business and life sciences business. Its electronic measurement business addresses the communications, electronics and other industries. Agilentâ€™s chemical analysis business focuses on the petrochemical, environmental, forensics and food safety industries. Its life sciences business focuses on the pharmaceutical, biotechnology, academic and Government, bio-agriculture and food safety industries. In April 2014, the Company acquired electrothermal analysis technology from Gradient Design Automation, the maker of HeatWave electrothermal analysis software.
Defensive Investor – must pass at least 6 of the following 7 tests: Score = 3/7
- Adequate Size of Enterprise – market capitalization of at least $2 billion -Â PASS
- Sufficiently Strong Financial Condition – current ratio greater than 2 -Â PASS
- Earnings Stability – positive earnings per share for at least 10 straight years -Â FAIL
- Dividend Record – has paid a dividend for at least 10 straight years -Â FAIL
- Earnings Growth – earnings per share has increased by at least 1/3 over the last 10 years using 3 year averages at beginning and end of period -Â PASS
- Moderate PEmg ratio – PEmg is less than 20 -Â FAIL
- Moderate Price to Assets – PB ratio is less than 2.5 or PB x PEmg is less than 50 -Â FAIL
Enterprising Investor – must pass at least 4 of the following 5 tests or be suitable for a defensive investor: Score = 5/5
- Sufficiently Strong Financial Condition, Part 1 – current ratio greater than 1.5 -Â PASS
- Sufficiently Strong Financial Condition, Part 2 – Debt to Net Current Assets ratio less than 1.1 -Â PASS
- Earnings Stability – positive earnings per share for at least 5 years – PASS
- Dividend Record – currently pays a dividend – PASS
- Earnings growth – EPSmg greater than 5 years ago -Â PASS
|Value Based on 3% Growth||$37.75|
|Value Based on 0% Growth||$22.13|
|Market Implied Growth Rate||6.68%|
|Net Current Asset Value (NCAV)||$0.27|
Balance Sheet – 7/31/2014
Earnings Per Share
Earnings Per ShareÂ – ModernGraham
Agilent TechnologiesÂ qualifiesÂ for the Enterprising Investor but not the Defensive Investor. Â The Defensive Investor is concerned withÂ the lack of earnings stability over the last ten years, the short dividend history, and the high PEmg and PB ratios. Â The Enterprising InvestorÂ has no initial concerns. Â As a result, Enterprising InvestorsÂ following the ModernGraham approach based on Benjamin Graham’s methods should feel comfortable proceeding with research into the company and comparing it to other opportunities. From a valuation side of things,Â the company appears to be undervalued after growingÂ its EPSmg (normalized earnings) from $1.42 in 2010 to an estimated $2.60 for 2014. Â This level of demonstrated growth outpacesÂ the market’s implied estimate of 6.68%Â earnings growth and leads the ModernGrahamÂ valuation model, based on Benjamin Graham’s formula, to return an estimate of intrinsic valueÂ aboveÂ the price.
Be sure to check out theÂ previousÂ ModernGraham valuations of Agilent Technologies (A)Â for more perspective!
The next part of the analysis is up to individual investors, and requires discussion of the company’s prospects. Â What do you think? Â What value would you put on Agilent Technologies (A)? Â Where do you see the company going in the future? Â Is there a company you like better? Â Leave aÂ comment on ourÂ Facebook pageÂ or mentionÂ @ModernGrahamÂ on Twitter to discuss.
Disclaimer: Â The author did not hold a position in Agilent Technologies (A)Â orÂ in any other company mentioned in this article at the time of publication and had no intention of changing that position within the next 72 hours. Â Logo taken from Wikipedia for the sole purpose of identifying the company; this article is not affiliated with the company in any manner.