Tim Brown: High on Halliburton

Bargain hunting in the NFL is the name of the game for a lot of teams. With a salary cap in place and most of the big stars inked to substantial deals, most teams have a limited about of salary-cap space to play with. Translation: They are looking to plug holes in their teams with quality players who are not prohibitively expensive.

Now, many teams have what are called salary-cap casualties. Those are generally good players who are let go because of the amount of money they are making. The team would generally be better off with that player on the field if the cap were not an issue. But, in many cases, thet teams are willing to take a chance on a younger or cheaper player to use that extra cash to help plug more than one hole.

When all is said and done, the good players who have been cut loose are left to find a new team. Many teams often look at these players and see how they fit into their system, both on the field and in the checkbook.

One company that has been cut loose by too many investors is Halliburton ( HAL). This company provides various products and services to the energy industry for the exploration, development, and production of oil and gas. The company operates in two segments: Completion & Production, and Drilling & Evaluation. Everyone knows this company for better or for worse. It had won several big contracts relating to the war in Iraq.

The company's stock has fallen more than 53% in the last year and was recently trading at about $17.80. It hit a 52-week low of $15.52 at the end of October. Its high during that period was more than $55.

It has solid revenue number at $17.55 billion. Its return on equity is impressive at more than 27%. And institutions are firmly behind this company. It has 86.8% institutional support. Lastly, this company is very undervalued. Its forward price-to-earnings ratio is 6.19.

Regardless of your opinion on the war, this company should bring home some bacon for investors over the long haul. All the television talking heads will tell you that you can't tell what is worth what in this environment. And evaluating stocks may be difficult because many good ones will be dragged down with the bad ones if the market continues to tank.

However, I can tell you that good companies are good companies and those shops do well over the long haul. And for some, they just don't have a lot of room to fall further. Halliburton is dirt cheap. I am buying.

Keep moving the chains!

At the time of publication, Brown had no positions in stocks mentioned, although positions may change at any time.

Tim Brown played 16 seasons in the NFL, where he made nine Pro Bowls. After a brief stint with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2004, Brown retired as an Oakland Raider. He was a Heisman Trophy winner in college for Notre Dame.

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