Just as we examine companies each week that may be rising past their fair value, we can also find companies potentially trading at bargain prices. While many investors would rather have nothing to do with companies tipping the scales at 52-week lows, I think it makes a lot of sense to determine whether the market has overreacted to the downside, just as we often do when the market reacts to the upside.
Here's a look at three fallen angels trading near their 52-week lows that could be worth buying.
Switch that frown upside down
Let's just say that I don't blame shareholders of Peregrine Semiconductor (NASDAQ: PSMI) for "stamped[ing] for the exits," as my Foolish colleague Alex Planes so eloquently described it. The maker of radio-frequency switches missed by about 10% on its profit projections for the fourth quarter last week, but more important, forecast revenue of just $43 million to $46 million, well below the $58 million Wall Street had expected.
The reason for the miss, according to research firm Oppenheimer, is the purported loss of an iPad Mini component to Skyworks Solutions (NASDAQ:SWKS). I personally wouldn't be too shocked if that was the case, given Skyworks' tight relationship with Apple with regard to power-amplifying modules in its mobile devices, and Skyworks' radio-frequency circuitry gains in other mobile networks. However, I also wouldn't equate the loss of one supposed device, the iPad Mini, to a death knell for Peregrine Semiconductor.
One point not lost on me during this report was that gross margin is expected to remain consistent. This tells me that Peregrine will remain healthfully profitable and could add to its already robust $74.4 million in net cash. With everything switching to mobile these days, parts suppliers will find their products in high demand, whether it's for Apple or other manufacturers. At about eight times forward earnings, I feel Peregrine Semiconductor's long-term potential is being vastly underestimated by investors.
Dig deep for a great value
If you're a contrarian like me, you see opportunities where everyone thinks we're heading higher as all the more reason to look for solid intermediate-term hedges. That's why I feel the Market Vectors Gold Miners ETF (NYSEMKT:GDX) could make for a smart play over the next three years.
In order for this ETF to outperform the S&P 500, we need two things to happen: gold prices to rise and cash mining costs to fall. To speak to the first point, a significant rise in the money supply since 2007 should help to keep constant pressure on the U.S. dollar and push gold prices modestly higher over the coming years.
The second aspect, mining costs, is really up to the individual miners. The second-largest holding in this ETF is Goldcorp (NYSE:GG), arguably one of the most cost-effective miners because it's able to sell its mined by-products to offset its total gold mining costs. Goldcorp's Penasquito mine in Mexico looks poised to deliver extremely high ore grades at a very low cost for the foreseeable future. With many other high-quality names crammed into this ETF, the Market Vectors Gold Miners ETF, with its 1.1% yield, could pack a shiny punch.
A stock fit for a king
Oil and natural gas royalty trusts have received a pretty bad rap over the past year, with many falling after deeper analysis revealed they were trading well above their projected lifetime dividend payouts. However, that's not the case for SandRidge Mississippian Trust II (OTC:SDR), which was slammed by a price target cut by Wunderlich Securities and a full-fledged downgrade to "underperform" by Raymond James.
The reason for the avoidance of this trust relates to SandRidge Mississippian II's announced quarterly payout of "just" $0.532557 when Wall Street was expecting much more. Apparently, SandRidge Mississippian II's Permian Basin assets are turning up more natural gas and less liquid fuels than expected and, with natural gas prices still well off their highs, profits have been stymied. This really isn't a big deal, however, as the Obama administration has made it very clear that clean-burning fuels like natural gas will be vital for creating an energy-independent U.S. This means a long-term bullish outlook for natural gas prices, in my opinion.
Let's not forget, as well, that multiple electric utilities have been actively transitioning from coal to natural gas for the cost savings and long-term waste-generating aspects. This only further supports the notion that natural gas will remain in high demand and that SandRidge Mississippian, with its 13% yield, will be a major income producer for years to come for investors.
As has been the trend lately, I'm focused on ignoring short-term negatives and seeing the positives three to five years down the road. A spike in mobile demand will translate to big gains for Peregrine Semiconductor; an irrationally complacent market will give way to moderate fear as growth in the U.S. and Europe slows, spurring higher gold prices; and increasing natural gas acceptance will spur demand for SandRidge Mississippian Trust II.