As the stock markets continue their ascent toward new 52-week highs, I can't help but notice the few dozen stocks not participating in this rally. Many have valid reasons to trade at new 52-week lows. American Superconductor (Nasdaq: AMSC ) shares imploded yesterday after news broke that its largest client, Sinovel, refused contracted shipments, signaling serious problems for the company moving forward.
But for other companies in this underperforming group, their long downturns may be overdone. I've found one stock in particular that may be too much of a bargain to pass up.
About eight months ago, there was no way I'd touch Genco Shipping (NYSE: GNK ) with a 10-foot pole. It's amazing how much a year has changed my perception of the company.
Genco's stock has been pummeled, frankly. The company, which leases dry bulk shipping vessels, has been buried under the weight of falling dry bulk rates and increased competition. The tragedy that unfolded in Japan also did little to help Genco, which relies on Japanese imports to drive shipping contracts.
So what's to be bullish about? More than meets the eye.
One of the biggest fears for drybulk shippers such as Genco is an overabundance of ships on the market. Genco alleviated these fears with its last earnings report, showing a 35% jump in revenue despite the increased competition. We've been warned for months that Genco would have trouble leasing its vessels in such a crowded market; I feel the company has proven analysts wrong.
I'm even more excited by the company's move toward short-term charter contracts. It's true that long-term contracts provide rate stability and a guaranteed form of cash flow, but with the Baltic Dry Index near multiyear lows, shifting toward shorter-term business makes complete sense. Why would the company lock itself into long-term low-rate contracts, when it could use this time to be price-competitive with its rivals? This way, it can lock in higher charter rates on new contracts when BDI rates finally do rise.
In contrast, rivals DryShips (Nasdaq: DRYS ) and Eagle Bulk Shipping (Nasdaq: EGLE ) have much longer charter contracts. Although these companies receive guaranteed cash flows, the pacts could hamper their ability to negotiate higher rates when the BDI does rebound.
Genco trades for just one-third of its tangible book value, despite raking in $4.07 in earnings per share over the trailing 12 months. As long as the company can keep its fixed costs under control, the company's stock price has a chance to sail significantly higher than its current valuation.
What's your take on Genco? Is the company ready to set sail, or will it continue to take on water? Share your thoughts in the comments section below, and consider tracking Genco Shipping, as well as your own personalized portfolio of stocks, with My Watchlist.