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MasterCard Is in Charge

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Stocks in this article: MA

Mastercard (MA) has been in a steady uptrend for all of the last year. I like to see stocks that are in a strong uptrend and the longer and stronger the better. However I also check to make sure that the uptrend has not resulted in overvaluation. In this case MA is selling for 22X forward earnings. I believe this is still a reasonable valuation given the 20% earnings growth I expect.

Other fundamental metrics also are reasonable. The profit margin currently is 38%. The operating margin is a very healthy 58%. The two measures tell us that the company is in a strong competitive position. This gives me the confidence to go with a put sale or a credit spread to reduce the margin required.

Trade: Sell to open 1 MA November 620 put at $4.30.

By doing a credit spread you may be able to reduce your margin requirement but it depends on how your broker treats credit spread margin. At most brokers the margin is only the difference between the strike prices.

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