Goldman Sachs strategist David Kostin recently released a list of Goldman's top 40 most undervalued stocks, as dictated by Goldman's internal price targets. Now, we all know the accuracy (rather, the lack thereof) of Wall Street price targets, but the company's most undervalued picks could be worth glancing through regardless -- especially the most deeply discounted ones. Though the markets have already had a phenomenal run in the first half of 2013, here's a list of a few stocks that may hold greater upside potential in the near to medium term.
Two stocks with similar prospects (and tickers) are projected to grow nearly 30%, according to Goldman analysts, on the back of a broader industry trend. Both in the hospitality business, Wynn Resorts (NASDAQ:WYNN) and hotelier Wyndham (NYSE:WYN) have price targets that are 29.2% and 28.4% higher, respectively, than their current offering prices.
Gambling Goliath Wynn recently saw slowed growth in its Macau operations, mainly due to an overhaul of many of the rooms at the resort and the continued construction of its second property. Domestic growth, interestingly, was better, as Vegas seems to be attracting more wealthy foreigners who crave Wynn's iconic premier experience on the Strip.
Wyndham owns its namesake brand, as well as other roadside haunts such as Days Inn, Super 8, and Howard Johnson (lovingly known as the HoJo). Wyndham is expanding in developing markets and tapping into the growing middle classes in these markets, which include many Latin American nations. Supporting Kostin's thesis, the hotel chain trades at just 14.4 times forward earnings -- an attractive discount to the other big players, such as Marriott at 17.55 times or Hyatt at 42 times.
In a choice far different from the previous two, Goldman named Marathon Petroleum (NYSE:MPC) its most undervalued pick, with an estimated 63.6% upside. Marathon Petroleum is the refinery and distribution arm of the recently split company, and it delivered an earnings report that showed a 58% decrease in net income on the back of rising costs. The stock had topped $90 per share just a few months ago, but increasing WTI crude prices have triggered Wall Street's wraith, shaving more than 20% of Marathon's market cap off the March high.
In the long term, Marathon's competitive position in the business should keep the business growing well despite the short-term consequences of being a publicly traded refinery business -- a space very vulnerable to Mr. Market's mood swings.
The appealing element here is the limited downside. Following its recent slide, Marathon shouldn't be heading much lower, even with WTI costs on the up (for now). And if Goldman is anywhere close with its estimated 63% upside, that implies a price near $115.
For the remaining stocks in Kostin's undervalued top 40, click here.
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