Although we don't believe in timing the market or panicking over market movements, we do like to keep an eye on big changes -- just in case they're material to our investing thesis.
What: Shares of electrical weapons company TASER International, (NASDAQ:AAXN) are looking stunning today, rising as much as 7.9% following news of a stock buyback.
So what: TASER International announced a buyback of up to $30 million, or close to a 4% return of capital to shareholders and up to a 4% increase in future earnings per share.
Rick Smith, CEO and founder of TASER International, stated that the buyback is due to the company's strong cash balance, cash generation activities, and "substantial" growth prospects. Smith said, "As we continue to invest in new business growth opportunities we believe the repurchase of our stock represents another attractive investment opportunity before us at this time."
Now what: Stock buybacks are generally viewed very favorably by Wall Street because it not only lowers the share count, raises the earnings per share, and creates added buying pressure for the stock, but it tends to speak louder than just words when it comes to showing management's confidence in the future.
TASER International currently trades with a P/E of 41 based on the current share price and analyst estimates of $0.34 for the year ending December 2014. The valuation appears to be a bit rich, so the news suggests that management believes that the stock is undervalued and thinks that perhaps analysts have their estimates at levels that are pessimistically too low.
That wouldn't be much of a surprise considering that in the last four quarters TASER International has beaten analyst estimates, sometimes by a wide margin, yet analysts haven't budged their numbers much. While TASER International looks overvalued based on estimates, it may prove to be undervalued based on actual reported earnings.