Wednesday, April 25, 2007

First Marblehead Corp. - One to consider for your portfolio

Let me tell you a little about First Marblehead - symbol (FMD) - this company has a PEG of .4, 1.0 is fully valued, a PE of 9.7 which is historically on the low end and return on equity of over 45, 15 is considered good. First Marblehead is in the student loan business. Since the start of 07 it has fallen from the mid 50's to the mid 30's and has solid support right around 30. Like most companies in finance, Marblehead was hit hard with the talk loans going bad but one, the crisis isn't as bad as many feared and two marblehead is the student loan business, people might put off a car or a house, they don't put off going to college. Marblehead also announced a 10 million share buyback which will raise the share price anyway you slice it over time. No the announcement came today, a day before earnings which has some, me included that earnings might be bad. That said, Marblehead as a solid history of hitting or exceeding earnings estimates. Marblehead is down 4% today to 36.00 on the skepticism. One of two things is going to happen in the short term, earnings come in solid along with positive news about the future and the stock gets a nice bounce tomorrow or they miss earnings and maybe fall another 5% in the short term and you get the stock at 33/34. I'm not one to quibble over a couple points, if earnings miss and it falls, I probably buy more. If earnings are solid, I stay put and hopefully see this stock back in the mid 50's at some point in the next couple years and walk away with a gain of 40% or so not including the dividend. Thats right you get about a 1.25% dividend too which is higher than the interest you get on your checking account.

No comments: