James Dennin, Kapitall: We built a list of undervalued dividend stocks that are also easy on the wallet. Is the market missing something?
Investors moved their money from equities into popular haven-assets like gold and currencies this week, causing the S&P 500 to recede and losing all of its gains for the year.
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The main reasons for the slip are international rather than domestic. The economic data released yesterday was actually pretty sunny, but Russia and China are being giant market drags. Jobless claims fell to their lowest level since November and retail numbers grew.Many analysts worry investors have been spooked by the growing tensions in Ukraine. Secretary of State John Kerry is making his way to Moscow now in a last-ditch attempt to negotiate a diplomatic solution with his Russian counterpart. Russian stocks have fallen to their lowest levels in almost 5 years. Europe, which relies heavily on Russia as a supplier of oil, iron, and other raw materials, is watching Crimea even more anxiously than the US. Falling stock prices could create a buying opportunity, so we decided to build a list of defensive stocks, which tend to gain value faster when investors are feeling cautious. To do that we started with a list of stocks priced between $5 and $10 and then narrowed that screen to just stocks that paid dividends. To finish narrowing our list, we looked for companies with high ratios of levered-free-cash-flow to enterprise value. Levered-free cash flow is the amount of cash a company has left over after paying off its expenses and debts. Enterprise value is an alternative to the "market cap" for measuring a company's size. When the ratio between the two is high, it means that the company has more cash on hand than the average company of its size.