Actions speak louder than words, as the old saying goes. So why does the media focus so much attention on what Wall Street says about companies, instead of what it does with them?
At one point in time, the answer was easy: We didn't know what the bankers were up to -- but no longer. Thanks to the folks at finviz.com, it's now easy to keep tabs on what stocks financial institutions are buying and selling. And thanks to the 170,000-plus lay and professional investors on Motley Fool CAPS, we've also got insight into whether these decisions make sense.
Here's the latest edition of Wall Street's Buy List, alongside our investors' opinions of the companies involved:
Enterprise Products Partners
Companies are selected from the "Institutional Ownership Up Last Month" list published on MSN Money after close of trading on Friday. Recent price provided by Yahoo! Finance. CAPS ratings from Motley Fool CAPS.
Wall Street vs. Main Street
Up on Wall Street, the professionals think these five stocks are the greatest things since sliced bread. (And by "bread," I mean money.) They're ...
- ... betting on a rebound at cash-rich Keryx ...
- ... tempted by the 10 P/E at Puda Coal (which I must admit, looks a whole lot cheaper than rocket stock International Coal) ...
- ... thinking that with government selling pressure subsiding, now's a good time to jump on Citigroup shares ...
- ... following The Wall Street Journal's advice, and snapping up shares of Enterprise Products as a play on the West Texas Intermediate oil glut, that's done such wonders for Valero
You might think that last story would be the one that attracts me most this week. After all, I've certainly written enough about it, and the stock is one of the only two five-star stocks on this week's list.
But in fact, anyone interested in Enterprise Products as an investment has only to read our write-up on the company in Motley Fool Income Investor -- picked long before the WTI trend came to light. So rather than retread that argument, let's break some new ground today, and instead examine the week's other five-star prospect.
The bull case for ArcelorMittal
As you no doubt recall, Goldman Sachs made a compelling case earlier this month for investing in steel -- U.S. Steel
Like U.S. Steel, you see, ArcelorMittal is a vertically integrated steelmaking operation. CAPS member PETPOE calls it an "integrated steel/coal coloss" with a "global footprint," and thinks Arcelor has "good prospects in Asia and Americas." Tickly agrees that "steel prices are rising as industrial demand is returning," and predicts that over "the long run, demand > ore production." To top it all off, ace CAPS investor rexlove points out that despite all these prospects, Arcelor still has a "low peg" that makes it a bargain.
And that's true. While the company's P/E looks pricey at 21, analysts see boom times ahead for ArcelorMittal's growth rate, which is projected to approach 26% over the next five years. Moreover, unlike rival U.S. Steel, Arcelor is entering into this growth race with strong cash production fueling its rise. Over the past 12 months, Arcelor generated more than $700 million in free cash flow, versus more than $1 billion burnt at U.S. Steel.
Time to chime in
Now, whether it's "positive" or not, I admit that the company's price-to-free cash flow ratio of 80 still scares me. Add in the fact that ArcelorMittal currently has nearly $20 billion in net debt to its name, and there's no way I will be following Wall Street's lead in buying the stock.
But perhaps you're a braver Fool than I? Perhaps you have a different read on what Arcelor's numbers mean to investors? If so, then here's your chance to set me straight, and explain why Wall Street is right to be buying ArcelorMittal today. Click. Post. Tell me why I'm wrong.
Enterprise Products Partners LP is a Motley Fool Income Investor recommendation, but Fool contributor Rich Smith does not own shares of, nor is he short, any company named above. You can find him on CAPS, publicly pontificating under the handle TMFDitty, where he's currently ranked No. 623 out of more than 170,000 members. The Fool has a disclosure policy.
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