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This Blue Chip Stock Could Have a Great Summer

By Matthew Frankel, CFP® and Brian Withers - Jun 29, 2021 at 7:41AM

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This stock could be a big beneficiary as the economy gets back to normal.

It's shaping up to be the summer of the great reopening in 2021, and some stocks could be big winners as the U.S. gets back to normal. In this Fool Live video clip, recorded on June 14, contributor Brian Withers and Matt Frankel, CFP, discuss why Home Depot (HD -2.17%) could be a particularly interesting stock to watch. 

Brian Withers: My stock is Home Depot, ticker symbol, H-D. Home Depot has something for every investor and it could be a summer hit as people want to get and spend more time outside. Let me explain. Home Depot is one of the companies that I love, it's got so many things going for it. It's a fantastic retail operator. Look at these same-store sales comparisons. 31% year-over-year, $38 billion in sales for last quarter, and a really solid bottom line, $3.86 earnings per share. It's a tech in e-commerce play. Look at this digital sales growth, 27% and that's on top of a huge quarter the previous years, so it's over 100% growth on a two-year basis. Look at this, more than half of the online orders, customers go ahead and drive to the store anyway and pick it up. It's a housing play. Look at this, almost 50% and it's probably over 50% now. This only goes up to 2018 of houses in the United States are 40 years or older. Imagine. I know my analysis is 2.5 years old and we owned a 30-year old house prior. Once your house gets older, there are just more things that you need to go to Home Depot for, and the fact that the housing stock in the United States has tremendously aged is a huge tailwind for the company and look at this dividend trend, 12-years of increasing dividends, that's just tremendous. But here's the thing that's going to happen, the thing that I'm excited about why these stocks are on the show. The summer quarters for Home Depot are typically the best ones of the year and this is just like the calendar quarter. Q4 is October, November, December. As opposed to retailers who have their largest quarter in the fourth quarter, that's not Home Depot. April, May, and June is their largest quarter here in the summer and it trends out through July, August, and September. Why is that? It's because it's summertime and their outdoor space is open and they sell plants, and they sell lawnmowers and they sell all sorts of stuff to do things that you wouldn't buy. That extra space in Home Depot is really not used during the winter months. You can see same thing happened in 2020 and they just posted close to a record growth quarter that is putting them and they didn't provide guidance for the upcoming quarter, but this next quarter could be a record quarter for Home Depot, the largest revenue quarter on record overall and it could be again another Q3. Look at Q3, $27 billion to $32 billion. They're set up for a really good summer this year as people are getting out and looking at things to upgrade their homes.

Matt Frankel: When I was at Home Depot about a week ago, I noticed that for lumber, they essentially wanted me to give them my firstborn child. How will that affect the thesis that people want to renovate stuff? Because I know personally some people who have put a deck project on hold, for example, because of the high cost of lumber.

Brian Withers: Yeah, that's absolutely a great question. Ted Decker, their COO from the most recent earnings report, explained that lumber prices have quadrupled on a skew basis year-over-year. What he says is, it's pushing customers to trade up to new and innovative products so that deck, maybe they don't do with wood. Maybe they go with the Trex (TREX -14.96%) product. What's amazing is it looks like this demand still remains strong regardless. The COO went on to say that the professionals continue to tell Home Depot that project demand is strong and their backlogs are growing and he also talked about do-it-yourself customers. Strong demand they saw on the back half of last year continued during the first quarter. He says, from gardening to garage and organization, new and existing customers are gauging with home improvement. For me, I look at the continued aging of homes, the fact that home sales, if you go out to buy a home today, home inventories are 20-year-plus low. Homeowners are likely to stay in their home and look to stretch their home's usefulness and they're going to be going to Home Depot to do that and I think this trend will continue for years to come.

Matt Frankel: Nice. Good point. I guess at quadruple the price, you only have to sell one-fourth of the wood to do the same revenue.

Brian Withers: Absolutely. They saw ticket prices go up considerably because of the lumber and if professionals are still seeing demand, somebody is buying that lumber for sure.

Brian Withers has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. Matthew Frankel, CFP has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool owns shares of and recommends Home Depot and Trex. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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Stocks Mentioned

The Home Depot, Inc. Stock Quote
The Home Depot, Inc.
$305.21 (-2.17%) $-6.76
Trex Company, Inc. Stock Quote
Trex Company, Inc.
$54.28 (-14.96%) $-9.55

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