Why Fast-paced Mover Marathon Petroleum (MPC) Is a Great Choice for Value Investors
Momentum investors typically don't time the market or "buy low and sell high." In other words, they avoid betting on cheap stocks and waiting long for them to recover. Instead, they believe that "buying high and selling higher" is the way to make far more money in lesser time.
Who doesn't like betting on fast-moving trending stocks? But determining the right entry point isn't easy. Often, these stocks lose momentum once their valuation moves ahead of their future growth potential. In such a situation, investors find themselves loaded up on expensive shares with limited to no upside or even a downside. So, going all-in on momentum could be risky at times.
It could be safer to invest in bargain stocks that have been witnessing price momentum recently. While the Zacks Momentum Style Score (part of the Zacks Style Scores system), which pays close attention to trends in a stock's price or earnings, is pretty useful in identifying great momentum stocks, 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 4.9% 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 1.9% over the past 12 weeks.
Moreover, the momentum for MPC is fast paced, as the stock currently has a beta of 1.6. This indicates that the stock moves 60% 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 0.32 times its sales. In other words, investors need to pay only 32 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.
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