Cleveland-Cliffs Inc Valuation – July 2018 $CLF

Company Profile (excerpt from Reuters): Cleveland-Cliffs Inc, formerly Cliffs Natural Resources Inc., incorporated on February 22, 1985, is a mining and natural resources company. The Company is a supplier of iron ore pellets to the North American steel industry from its mines and pellet plants located in Michigan and Minnesota. The Company’s segments include U.S. Iron Ore and Asia Pacific Iron Ore. In addition, the Company operates an iron ore mining complex in Western Australia. In the United States, the Company owned four operational iron ore mines and one indefinitely idled mine, as of December 31, 2016.


Downloadable PDF version of this valuation:

ModernGraham Valuation of CLF – July 2018

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 $3,185,660,788 Pass
2. Sufficiently Strong Financial Condition Current Ratio > 2 3.26 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 -82.43% Fail
6. Moderate PEmg Ratio PEmg < 20 -3.75 Fail
7. Moderate Price to Assets PB Ratio < 2.5 OR PB*PEmg < 50 -10.49 Fail
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 3.26 Pass
2. Sufficiently Strong Financial Condition Debt to NCA < 1.1 2.14 Fail
3. Earnings Stability Positive EPS for 5 years prior Fail
4. Dividend Record Currently Pays Dividend Fail
5. Earnings Growth EPSmg greater than 5 years ago Pass


Stage 2: Determination of Intrinsic Value

EPSmg -$2.85
MG Growth Estimate 12.04%
MG Value $0.00
Opinion Overvalued
MG Grade D
MG Value based on 3% Growth -$41.28
MG Value based on 0% Growth -$24.20
Market Implied Growth Rate -6.12%
Current Price $10.67
% of Intrinsic Value N/A

Cleveland-Cliffs Inc does not satisfy the requirements of either the Enterprising Investor or the more conservative Defensive Investor. The Defensive Investor is concerned with the insufficient earnings stability or growth over the last ten years, and the poor dividend history, and the high PEmg and PB ratios. The Enterprising Investor has concerns regarding the level of debt relative to the net current assets, and the lack of earnings stability over the last five years, and the lack of dividends. As a result, all value investors following the ModernGraham approach should explore other opportunities at this time or proceed cautiously with a speculative attitude.

As for a valuation, the company appears to be Overvalued after growing its EPSmg (normalized earnings) from $-14.44 in 2014 to an estimated $-2.85 for 2018. This level of negative earnings does not support a positive valuation.As a result, the ModernGraham valuation model, based on the Benjamin Graham value investing formula, returns an estimate of intrinsic value below the price.

At the time of valuation, further research into Cleveland-Cliffs Inc revealed the company was trading above its Graham Number of $0. The company does not pay a dividend. Its PEmg (price over earnings per share – ModernGraham) was -3.75, which was below the industry average of 46.07, which by some methods of valuation makes it one of the most undervalued stocks in its industry. Finally, the company was trading above its Net Current Asset Value (NCAV) of $-6.01.

Cleveland-Cliffs Inc scores quite poorly in the ModernGraham grading system, with an overall grade of D.

Stage 3: Information for Further Research

Net Current Asset Value (NCAV) -$6.01
Graham Number $0.00
PEmg -3.75
Current Ratio 3.26
PB Ratio -10.49
Current Dividend $0.00
Dividend Yield 0.00%
Number of Consecutive Years of Dividend Growth 0

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Most Recent Balance Sheet Figures

Balance Sheet Information 6/1/2018
Total Current Assets $1,546,900,000
Total Current Liabilities $474,900,000
Long-Term Debt $2,297,000,000
Total Assets $3,051,500,000
Intangible Assets $49,300,000
Total Liabilities $3,357,800,000
Shares Outstanding (Diluted Average) 301,275,000

Earnings Per Share History

EPS History
Next Fiscal Year Estimate $1.49
Dec2017 $1.26
Dec2016 $0.87
Dec2015 -$5.14
Dec2014 -$47.52
Dec2013 $2.37
Dec2012 -$6.32
Dec2011 $11.48
Dec2010 $7.49
Dec2009 $1.63
Dec2008 $4.76
Dec2007 $2.57
Dec2006 $2.60
Dec2005 $2.50
Dec2004 $2.95
Dec2003 -$0.40
Dec2002 -$2.33
Dec2001 -$0.29
Dec2000 $0.22
Dec1999 $0.05
Dec1998 $0.63

Earnings Per Share – ModernGraham History

EPSmg History
Next Fiscal Year Estimate -$2.85
Dec2017 -$6.55
Dec2016 -$10.69
Dec2015 -$13.99
Dec2014 -$14.44
Dec2013 $2.51
Dec2012 $2.99
Dec2011 $6.96
Dec2010 $4.40
Dec2009 $2.84
Dec2008 $3.32
Dec2007 $2.42
Dec2006 $1.91
Dec2005 $1.21
Dec2004 $0.39
Dec2003 -$0.78
Dec2002 -$0.76

Recommended Reading:

Other ModernGraham posts about the company

5 of the Worst Stocks to Invest In – January 2017
Cliffs Natural Resources Inc Valuation – January 2017 $CLF
Cliffs Natural Resources Inc. Analysis – August 2015 Update $CLF
18 Companies to Research This Week – 8/30/2014
Cliffs Natural Resources Inc. Annual Valuation – 2014 $CLF

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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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