Lam Research Corporation Analysis – October 2015 Update $LRCX

Benjamin Graham taught that Intelligent Investors must do a thorough fundamental analysis of investment opportunities to determine their intrinsic value and inherent risk.  This is best done by utilizing a systematic approach to analysis that will provide investors with a sense of how a specific company compares to another company or by reviewing the 10 Most Undervalued Companies for the Defensive Investor – September 2015.  By using the ModernGraham method one can review a company’s historical accomplishments and determine an intrinsic value that can be compared across industries.  What follows is a stock analysis showing a specific look at how Lam Research Corporation (LRCX) fares in the ModernGraham valuation model.

Company Profile (obtained from Google Finance): Lam Research Corporation (Lam Research) is a supplier of wafer fabrication equipment and services to the semiconductor industry. The Company’s products are used primarily in front-end wafer processing, which involves the steps that create the active components of a device and their wiring. It also addresses processes for back-end wafer-level packaging (WLP). In addition, its products are offered for related markets that rely on semiconductor processes and require production-proven manufacturing capability, such as micro-electromechanical systems (MEMS). Its thin film deposition systems form a device’s sub-microscopic layers of conducting (metal) or insulating (dielectric) materials. It is a provider of plasma etch, a process step that selectively removes materials from the wafer to create the features and patterns of a device. Its wet spin clean and plasma-based bevel clean products remove particles, residues and film from the wafer surface before or after adjacent processes.


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Premium members can view a full ModernGraham valuation of the company and have access to download a PDF version of the valuation for easy reference. Here is a free sample valuation pdf, and here is a post detailing what can be found within each individual company’s valuation.


Downloadable PDF version of this valuation:

ModernGraham Valuation of LRCX – October 2015

Stage 1: Is this company suitable for the Defensive Investor or the Enterprising Investor?

What kind of Intelligent Investor are you?

Defensive Investor; must pass 6 out of the following 7 tests.
1. Adequate Size of the Enterprise Market Cap > $2Bil $10,020,835,388 Pass
2. Sufficiently Strong Financial Condition Current Ratio > 2 2.38 Pass
3. Earnings Stability Positive EPS for 10 years prior Fail
4. Dividend Record Dividend Payments for 10 years prior Fail
5. Earnings Growth Increase of 33% in EPS in past 10 years using 3 year averages at beginning and end 101.02% Pass
6. Moderate PEmg Ratio PEmg < 20 18.88 Pass
7. Moderate Price to Assets PB Ratio < 2.5 OR PB*PEmg < 50 2.23 Pass
Enterprising Investor; must pass 4 out of the following 5 tests, or be suitable for the Defensive Investor.
1. Sufficiently Strong Financial Condition Current Ratio > 1.5 2.38 Pass
2. Sufficiently Strong Financial Condition Debt to NCA < 1.1 0.28 Pass
3. Earnings Stability Positive EPS for 5 years prior Pass
4. Dividend Record Currently Pays Dividend Pass
5. Earnings Growth EPSmg greater than 5 years ago Pass

Stage 2: Determination of Intrinsic Value

LRCX value Chart October 2015

EPSmg $3.41
MG Growth Estimate 5.90%
MG Value $69.22
Opinion Fairly Valued
MG Value based on 3% Growth $49.43
MG Value based on 0% Growth $28.97
Market Implied Growth Rate 5.19%
Current Price $64.37
% of Intrinsic Value 92.99%

Lam Research Corporation qualifies for the Enterprising Investor but not the more conservative Defensive Investor.  The Defensive Investor is concerned with the insufficient earnings stability over the last ten years and the short dividend history.  The Enterprising Investor has no initial concerns.  As a result, all Enterprising Investors following the ModernGraham approach based on Benjamin Graham’s methods should feel comfortable proceeding with further research into the company.

As for a valuation, the company appears to be fairly valued after growing its EPSmg (normalized earnings) from $2.45 in 2012 to an estimated $3.41 for 2016.  This level of demonstrated earnings growth supports the market’s implied estimate of 5.19% annual earnings growth over the next 7-10 years.  As a result, the ModernGraham valuation model, based on Benjamin Graham’s formula, returns an estimate of intrinsic value within a margin of safety relative to the price.

The next part of the analysis is up to individual investors, and requires discussion of the company’s prospects.  What do you think?  What value would you put on Lam Research Corporation (LRCX)?  Where do you see the company going in the future?  Is there a company you like better?  Leave a comment on our Facebook page or mention @ModernGraham on Twitter to discuss.

Stage 3: Information for Further Research

LRCX Charts October 2015

Net Current Asset Value (NCAV) $11.38
Graham Number $57.50
PEmg 18.88
Current Ratio 2.38
PB Ratio 2.23
Dividend Yield 1.30%
Number of Consecutive Years of Dividend Growth 3



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Most Recent Balance Sheet Figures

Total Current Assets $6,270,849,000
Total Current Liabilities $2,631,361,000
Long-Term Debt $1,001,382,000
Total Assets $9,364,648,000
Intangible Assets $2,115,649,000
Total Liabilities $4,261,504,000
Shares Outstanding (Diluted Average) 176,575,000

Earnings Per Share History

Next Fiscal Year Estimate $4.56
Jun15 $3.70
Jun14 $3.62
Jun13 $0.66
Jun12 $1.35
Jun11 $5.79
Jun10 $2.71
Jun09 -$2.41
Jun08 $3.47
Jun07 $4.85
Jun06 $2.34
Jun05 $2.10
Jun04 $0.59
Jun03 -$0.06
Jun02 -$0.71
Jun01 $0.39
Jun00 $1.53
Jun99 -$0.98
Jun98 -$1.27
Jun97 -$0.37
Jun96 $1.56

Earnings Per Share – ModernGraham History

Next Fiscal Year Estimate $3.41
Jun15 $2.90
Jun14 $2.61
Jun13 $1.94
Jun12 $2.45
Jun11 $2.96
Jun10 $1.76
Jun09 $1.54
Jun08 $3.24
Jun07 $2.74
Jun06 $1.40
Jun05 $0.78
Jun04 $0.19
Jun03 $0.01
Jun02 -$0.04
Jun01 $0.15
Jun00 $0.05

Recommended Reading:

Other ModernGraham posts about the company

Lam Research Corporation Analysis – June 2015 Update $LRCX
Lam Research Corporation Quarterly Valuation – March 2015 $LRCX
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The author did not hold a position in any company mentioned in this article at the time of publication and had no intention of changing that position within the next 72 hours.  See my current holdings here.  This article is not investment advice; any reader should speak to a registered investment adviser prior to making any investment decisions.  ModernGraham is not affiliated with the company in any manner.  Please be sure to review our detailed disclaimer.






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