NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- With the passing of legendary investor Kirk Kerkorian earlier this week, and his private investment corporation Tracinda Corp. looking to sell its stake in MGM Resorts (MGM), we decided to check Quant Ratings to see if any of Kerkorian's favorite companies would be good investments today.
Kerkorian was affiliated with many successful companies in his long investing career. Although he did not own all of the companies on our list, Kerkorian crossed paths with them during some point in his career. And although he passed away earlier this week, you can bet there are still investors out there asking themselves, "What would Kirk do?"
So, what are the best "Kerkorian companies" investors should be buying? Here are the top three, according to TheStreet Ratings, TheStreet's proprietary ratings tool.
TheStreet Ratings projects a stock's total return potential over a 12-month period including both price appreciation and dividends. Based on 32 major data points, TheStreet Ratings uses a quantitative approach to rating over 4,300 stocks to predict return potential for the next year. The model is both objective, using elements such as volatility of past operating revenues, financial strength, and company cash flows, and subjective, including expected equities market returns, future interest rates, implied industry outlook and forecasted company earnings.
Buying an S&P 500 stock that TheStreet Ratings rated a buy yielded a 16.56% return in 2014 beating the S&P 500 Total Return Index by 304 basis points. Buying a Russell 2000 stock that TheStreet Ratings rated a buy yielded a 9.5% return in 2014, beating the Russell 2000 index, including dividends reinvested, by 460 basis points last year.
Check out which companies made the list. And when you're done, be sure to read about which highly volatile tech stocks to buy now. Year-to-date returns are based on June 17, 2015, closing prices. The highest-rated stock appears last.GM data by YCharts
3. General Motors Company (GM)
Rating: Buy, B
Market Cap: $57.5 billion
Year-to-date return: 2.6%
General Motors Company designs, builds, and sells cars, crossovers, trucks, and automobile parts worldwide. It operates through GM North America, GM Europe, GM International Operations, GM South America, and GM Financial segments.
"We rate GENERAL MOTORS CO (GM) a BUY. This is driven by some important positives, which we believe should have a greater impact than any weaknesses, and should give investors a better performance opportunity than most stocks we cover. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its increase in net income, impressive record of earnings per share growth, notable return on equity and largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures. We feel its strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had lackluster performance in the stock itself."
Highlights from the analysis by TheStreet Ratings Team goes as follows:
- The net income growth from the same quarter one year ago has significantly exceeded that of the S&P 500 and the Automobiles industry. The net income increased by 343.7% when compared to the same quarter one year prior, rising from $213.00 million to $945.00 million.
- GENERAL MOTORS CO reported significant earnings per share improvement in the most recent quarter compared to the same quarter a year ago. This company has reported somewhat volatile earnings recently. But, we feel it is poised for EPS growth in the coming year. During the past fiscal year, GENERAL MOTORS CO reported lower earnings of $1.64 versus $2.35 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($4.48 versus $1.64).
- The return on equity has improved slightly when compared to the same quarter one year prior. This can be construed as a modest strength in the organization. Compared to other companies in the Automobiles industry and the overall market on the basis of return on equity, GENERAL MOTORS CO has outperformed in comparison with the industry average, but has underperformed when compared to that of the S&P 500.
- Regardless of the drop in revenue, the company managed to outperform against the industry average of 7.1%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly dropped by 4.5%. The declining revenue has not hurt the company's bottom line, with increasing earnings per share.
- Even though the current debt-to-equity ratio is 1.33, it is still below the industry average, suggesting that this level of debt is acceptable within the Automobiles industry. Regardless of the somewhat mixed results with the debt-to-equity ratio, the company's quick ratio of 0.79 is weak.
- You can view the full analysis from the report here: GM Ratings Report