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TheStreet Open House

5 Big Consumer Stocks to Buy on the Cheap

Stocks in this article: WMTSJMCLXPGMCD

As with P&G, Clorox has a diversified income statement, with sales spread out across its brand portfolio. But Clorox does have outsized concentration geographically, with more than 80% of sales coming from the U.S. -- with such an unsaturated market for CLX's products in emerging countries, this stock has a big opportunity for growth right now. Cost inflation has been a concern for a number of household goods makers, but Clorox has shown that its more than capable of controlling costs of goods sold: this stock's net margins are consistently in the double digits.

Clorox has a balance sheet that's on par with P&G's, just on a smaller scale. CLX current has just shy of $700 million in cash, offsetting a $3 billion debt load. That's an easily manageable amount of leverage for the firm, even when a 3.4% dividend payout is factored into the equation. That makes this bargain a slightly higher-beta alternative to P&G because of its size. Clorox's earnings come in at the start of February.

J.M. Smucker Company

Food stock J.M. Smucker Company (SJM) may be best known for its namesake jams, peanut butter, and jelly brand -- but the firm also owns names like Folgers, Dunkin' Donuts coffee, Jif, and Crisco. The firm is one of the most bargain-priced consumer stocks on our list, trading for a 30% discount to P/E and a massive 42% discount to its cash flow generation.

Smucker dramatically boosted its scale when it acquired Folgers in 2008, essentially doubling the size of SJM's total business. The move was risky at the time because of market conditions here at home and the huge price tag that the firm paid for the coffee brand, but so far it's paid off in spades. SJM's coffee business earns the biggest operating margins of all of the firm's units, and the firm's overall margins have edged higher as a result. Management's ability to make smart acquisitions comes contrary to what most firms have achieved in the last few years -- and investors should appreciate that.

Because Smucker's brands are very popular with consumers, the firm enjoys extra leverage when negotiating with end customers on the retail side. That translates into a bigger yield for shareholders -- the firm tries to target around a 40% payout rate that presently means a 2.33% dividend yield. As long as management can keep debt in check, the discount on SJM right now isn't likely to last.

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