Fastenal Company (NASDAQ:FAST) saw significant share price movement during recent months on the NASDAQGS, rising to highs of US$49.67 and falling to the lows of US$41.92. Some share price movements can give investors a better opportunity to enter into the stock, and potentially buy at a lower price. A question to answer is whether Fastenal's current trading price of US$44.54 reflective of the actual value of the large-cap? Or is it currently undervalued, providing us with the opportunity to buy? Let’s take a look at Fastenal’s outlook and value based on the most recent financial data to see if there are any catalysts for a price change.
What is Fastenal worth?
Fastenal appears to be expensive according to my price multiple model, which makes a comparison between the company's price-to-earnings ratio and the industry average. In this instance, I’ve used the price-to-earnings (PE) ratio given that there is not enough information to reliably forecast the stock’s cash flows. I find that Fastenal’s ratio of 30.65x is above its peer average of 17.81x, which suggests the stock is trading at a higher price compared to the Trade Distributors industry. If you like the stock, you may want to keep an eye out for a potential price decline in the future. Since Fastenal’s share price is quite volatile, this could mean it can sink lower (or rise even further) in the future, giving us another chance to invest. This is based on its high beta, which is a good indicator for how much the stock moves relative to the rest of the market.
What kind of growth will Fastenal generate?
Future outlook is an important aspect when you’re looking at buying a stock, especially if you are an investor looking for growth in your portfolio. Although value investors would argue that it’s the intrinsic value relative to the price that matter the most, a more compelling investment thesis would be high growth potential at a cheap price. With profit expected to grow by 24% over the next couple of years, the future seems bright for Fastenal. It looks like higher cash flow is on the cards for the stock, which should feed into a higher share valuation.
What this means for you:
Are you a shareholder? FAST’s optimistic future growth appears to have been factored into the current share price, with shares trading above industry price multiples. However, this brings up another question – is now the right time to sell? If you believe FAST should trade below its current price, selling high and buying it back up again when its price falls towards the industry PE ratio can be profitable. But before you make this decision, take a look at whether its fundamentals have changed.
Are you a potential investor? If you’ve been keeping an eye on FAST for a while, now may not be the best time to enter into the stock. The price has surpassed its industry peers, which means it is likely that there is no more upside from mispricing. However, the positive outlook is encouraging for FAST, which means it’s worth diving deeper into other factors in order to take advantage of the next price drop.
Keep in mind, when it comes to analysing a stock it's worth noting the risks involved. Every company has risks, and we've spotted 1 warning sign for Fastenal you should know about.
If you are no longer interested in Fastenal, you can use our free platform to see our list of over 50 other stocks with a high growth potential.
This article by Simply Wall St is general in nature. It does not constitute a recommendation to buy or sell any stock, and does not take account of your objectives, or your financial situation. We aim to bring you long-term focused analysis driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements or qualitative material. Simply Wall St has no position in any stocks mentioned.
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