Updated to include Lululemon and Mead Johnson NutritionNEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Retailers American Eagle Outfitters ( AEO), Lululemon ( LULU) and Pier 1 Imports ( PIR) as well as food products company Mead Johnson Nutrition ( MJN) hit 52-week highs on Thursday. All of the stocks received buy ratings at TheStreet Ratings.
Pier 1 Imports "For some time we have recommended Pier 1 Imports as one of the most compelling small-cap investment opportunities in the Hardlines Sector," Oppenheimer analysts wrote in a March 5 report. "We stress-tested our PIR financial model and reflected upon our investment thesis. Our conclusion: PIR has further room to run. Sales volumes at PIR have improved markedly lately, but remain well below prior peak levels. The forthcoming launch of e-commerce should represent an incremental top-line driver and enhanced marketing vehicle for PIR. Return-on-invested capital at PIR is climbing as sales and margins move higher in concert. Our new $20 price target (up from $17) implies upside potential of about 20% from current levels." Shares of Pier 1 Imports hit a 52-week high Thursday of $18.42. The stock's 52-week low of $8.60 was set on Aug. 8. Pier 1 Imports' forward P/E is 16.47; the average for home-improvement retailers is 13.9. For comparison, both Home Depot ( HD) and Lowe's ( LOW) have lower forward P/Es of 15.42 and 13.9, respectively. Nine of the 13 analysts who cover Pier 1 Imports rated it buy. Three analysts gave the stock a hold rating and one rated it sell. TheStreet Ratings gives Pier 1 Imports a B grade with a buy rating and a $21.84 price target. The stock has risen 31.08% year to date.