Paychex Inc Valuation – January 2019 $PAYX

Company Profile (excerpt from Reuters): Paychex, Inc., incorporated on April 26, 1979, is a provider of integrated human capital management (HCM) solutions for payroll, human resource (HR), retirement and insurance services for small- to medium-sized businesses in the United States. The Company also has operations in Germany. The Company offers services, including Payroll processing, Human Resource Services and Accounting and Financial Services. As of May 31, 2016, the Company serviced approximately 605,000 payroll clients. It offers a portfolio of HCM services and products that allows its clients to meet their payroll and HR needs. Its payroll-related ancillary services and human resource service (HRS) offerings often leverage the information gathered in the base payroll processing service, allowing it to provide outsourcing services covering the HCM spectrum. It also offers professional employer organization (PEO) services and provides insurance offerings through the Paychex Insurance Agency, Inc. (PIA).


Downloadable PDF version of this valuation:

ModernGraham Valuation of PAYX – January 2019

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 $23,793,370,427 Pass
2. Sufficiently Strong Financial Condition Current Ratio > 2 1.23 Fail
3. Earnings Stability Positive EPS for 10 years prior Pass
4. Dividend Record Dividend Payments for 10 years prior Pass
5. Earnings Growth Increase of 33% in EPS in past 10 years using 3 year averages at beginning and end 79.53% Pass
6. Moderate PEmg Ratio PEmg < 20 26.75 Fail
7. Moderate Price to Assets PB Ratio < 2.5 OR PB*PEmg < 50 9.86 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 1.23 Fail
2. Sufficiently Strong Financial Condition Debt to NCA < 1.1 0.00 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

EPSmg $2.47
MG Growth Estimate 7.07%
MG Value $56.02
Opinion Overvalued
MG Grade C
MG Value based on 3% Growth $35.86
MG Value based on 0% Growth $21.02
Market Implied Growth Rate 9.12%
Current Price $66.16
% of Intrinsic Value 118.10%

Paychex, Inc. is suitable for the Enterprising Investor but not the more conservative Defensive Investor. The Defensive Investor is concerned with the low current ratio, high PEmg and PB ratios. The Enterprising Investor is only concerned with the low current ratio. As a result, all Enterprising Investors following the ModernGraham approach should feel comfortable proceeding with the analysis.

As for a valuation, the company appears to be Overvalued after growing its EPSmg (normalized earnings) from $1.68 in 2015 to an estimated $2.47 for 2019. This level of demonstrated earnings growth does not support the market’s implied estimate of 9.12% annual earnings growth over the next 7-10 years. 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 Paychex, Inc. revealed the company was trading above its Graham Number of $18.85. The company pays a dividend of $2.06 per share, for a yield of 3.1%, putting it among the best dividend paying stocks today. Its PEmg (price over earnings per share – ModernGraham) was 26.75, which was above the industry average of 26.19. Finally, the company was trading above its Net Current Asset Value (NCAV) of $1.97.

Paychex, Inc. receives an average overall rating in the ModernGraham grading system, scoring a C.

Stage 3: Information for Further Research

Net Current Asset Value (NCAV) $1.97
Graham Number $18.85
PEmg 26.75
Current Ratio 1.23
PB Ratio 9.86
Current Dividend $2.06
Dividend Yield 3.11%
Number of Consecutive Years of Dividend Growth 5

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Most Recent Balance Sheet Figures

Balance Sheet Information 11/1/2018
Total Current Assets $5,290,000,000
Total Current Liabilities $4,306,800,000
Long-Term Debt $0
Total Assets $7,002,400,000
Intangible Assets $938,600,000
Total Liabilities $4,577,900,000
Shares Outstanding (Diluted Average) 361,500,000

Earnings Per Share History

EPS History
Next Fiscal Year Estimate $2.80
May2018 $2.58
May2017 $2.25
May2016 $2.09
May2015 $1.85
May2014 $1.71
May2013 $1.56
May2012 $1.51
May2011 $1.42
May2010 $1.32
May2009 $1.48
May2008 $1.56
May2007 $1.35
May2006 $1.22
May2005 $0.97
May2004 $0.80
May2003 $0.78
May2002 $0.73
May2001 $0.68
May2000 $0.51
May1999 $0.25

Earnings Per Share – ModernGraham History

EPSmg History
Next Fiscal Year Estimate $2.47
May2018 $2.24
May2017 $2.01
May2016 $1.84
May2015 $1.68
May2014 $1.57
May2013 $1.48
May2012 $1.45
May2011 $1.42
May2010 $1.41
May2009 $1.41
May2008 $1.31
May2007 $1.13
May2006 $0.98
May2005 $0.84
May2004 $0.75
May2003 $0.68

Recommended Reading:

Other ModernGraham posts about the company

Paychex Inc Valuation – March 2018 $PAYX
Paychex Inc Valuation – June 2016 $PAYX
Paychex Inc. Valuation – November 2015 Update $PAYX
Paychex Inc. Analysis – August 2015 Update $PAYX
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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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