Marathon Petroleum (MPC) Shows Fast-paced Momentum But Is Still a Bargain Stock
Marathon Petroleum (MPC) made it through our 'Fast-Paced Momentum at a Bargain' screen and could be a great choice for investors looking for stocks that have gained strong momentum recently...
Momentum investing is essentially the opposite of the tried-and-tested Wall Street adage -- "buy low and sell high." Investors following this investing style typically avoid betting on cheap stocks and waiting long for them to recover. They believe instead that one could make far more money in lesser time by "buying high and selling higher."
Everyone likes betting on fast-moving trending stocks, but it isn't easy to determine the right entry point. These stocks often lose momentum when their future growth potential fails to justify their swelled-up valuation. In that phase, investors find themselves invested in shares that have limited to no upside or even a downside. So, betting on a stock just by looking at the traditional momentum parameters could be risky at times.
A safer approach could be investing in bargain stocks with recent price momentum. While the Zacks Momentum Style Score (part of the Zacks Style Scores system) helps identify great momentum stocks by paying close attention to trends in a stock's price or earnings, our 'Fast-Paced Momentum at a Bargain' screen comes handy in spotting fast-moving stocks that are still attractively priced.
Marathon Petroleum (MPC) is one of the several great candidates that made it through the screen. While there are numerous reasons why this stock is a great choice, here are the most vital ones:
Investors' growing interest in a stock is reflected in its recent price increase. A price change of 1.7% over the past four weeks positions the stock of this refiner well in this regard.
While any stock can see a spike in price for a short period, it takes a real momentum player to deliver positive returns for a longer time frame. MPC meets this criterion too, as the stock gained 12.5% over the past 12 weeks.
Moreover, the momentum for MPC is fast paced, as the stock currently has a beta of 2.1. This indicates that the stock moves 110% higher than the market in either direction.
Given this price performance, it is no surprise that MPC has a Momentum Score of A, which indicates that this is the right time to enter the stock to take advantage of the momentum with the highest probability of success.
In addition to a favorable Momentum Score, an upward trend in earnings estimate revisions has helped MPC earn a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). Our research shows that the momentum-effect is quite strong among Zacks Rank #1 and #2 stocks. That's because as covering analysts raise their earnings estimates for a stock, more and more investors take an interest in it, helping its price race to keep up. You can see the complete list of today's Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) stocks here >>>>
Most importantly, despite possessing fast-paced momentum features, MPC is trading at a reasonable valuation. In terms of Price-to-Sales ratio, which is considered as one of the best valuation metrics, the stock looks quite cheap now. MPC is currently trading at 0.39 times its sales. In other words, investors need to pay only 39 cents for each dollar of sales.
So, MPC appears to have plenty of room to run, and that too at a fast pace.
In addition to MPC, there are several other stocks that currently pass through our 'Fast-Paced Momentum at a Bargain' screen. You may consider investing in them and start looking for the newest stocks that fit these criteria.
This is not the only screen that could help you find your next winning stock pick. Based on your personal investing style, you may choose from over 45 Zacks Premium Screens that are strategically created to beat the market.
However, keep in mind that the key to a successful stock-picking strategy is to ensure that it produced profitable results in the past. You could easily do that with the help of the Zacks Research Wizard. In addition to allowing you to backtest the effectiveness of your strategy, the program comes loaded with some of our most successful stock-picking strategies.
Infrastructure Stock Boom to Sweep America
A massive push to rebuild the crumbling U.S. infrastructure will soon be underway. It’s bipartisan, urgent, and inevitable. Trillions will be spent. Fortunes will be made.
The only question is “Will you get into the right stocks early when their growth potential is greatest?”
Zacks has released a Special Report to help you do just that, and today it’s free. Discover 7 special companies that look to gain the most from construction and repair to roads, bridges, and buildings, plus cargo hauling and energy transformation on an almost unimaginable scale.Download FREE: How to Profit from Trillions on Spending for Infrastructure >>
Want the latest recommendations from Zacks Investment Research? Today, you can download 7 Best Stocks for the Next 30 Days. Click to get this free report
Marathon Petroleum Corporation (MPC): Free Stock Analysis Report
To read this article on Zacks.com click here.