While this quarter is expected to be tepid for competitors such as BlackRock, T. Rowe Price and Franklin Resources, Invesco is among the most undervalued shares in this space. It trades at less than 11-times forward earnings compared to 14-to-15 times for its peers.
A strong stock market helped Invesco in March to grow bigger, with active assets under management (AUM) coming in at $640 billion. Its passive AUM grew to over $131 billion.
Nobody expects traditional asset managers to have a great March quarter. But at with a 14.3% drop in earnings-per-share (EPS) and 6.6% sales decline, Invesco is relatively unscathed compared to the 36% EPS drop in Franklin Resources (and don't forget Franklin's 17.7% sales drop).
Legg Mason is also projected to report a loss of 47 cents compared to 73 cents profit last year, for the same period. T. Rowe Price and Janus Capital Group will also report a drop in EPS this quarter.
However, in terms of valuation, there remains a large difference and it's why Invesco may get re-rated soon.
At a price-to-earnings-to-growth (PEG) ratio of 1.31 (five-year expected), Invesco is cheap compared to T. Rowe Price (1.94), BlackRock (1.6), pricey AllianceBernstein (6.83), growth-starved Franklin Resources (-3.28) and Waddell & Reed (-4.32).
After its 52-week 21% price correction, Invesco is among the cheapest stocks around in the asset management space (along with Gamco and Affiliated Managers). Franklin Resources combines strong earnings potential and good value at a reasonable price.
Next year (Dec. 2017), Invesco is expected to out-perform the industry in earnings growth with nearly 19% rebounds compared to less than 5% of the industry and the likes of Affiliated Managers (13.8%).
Invesco is also doing well in key areas such as the currency ETF space where it offers a tough time to competitors like Barclays and WisdomTree. With investment products becoming more standardized packages, Invesco can be expected to do well in the future with its good portfolio and experienced management team.
We feel this is one of the reasons why Invesco is among the top investment choices marked by Deustche Bank. In a smart strategic move, Invesco this year acquired Jemstep, one of the first online automated investment platforms in the financial services industry. Invesco is quickly positioning itself for the rapid changes to come in trading.
Invesco's 3.5% dividend yield, seven years of dividend growth (for a near tripling of annual dividends between 2006 and 2015) underlines its appeal as a good income play as well. Its payout ratio at less than 45% also alludes to the possibility of bigger dividends.
The 15 analysts offering 12-month price targets for Invesco have a median target of $37.00, representing 18%-plus increase from its last price.
We believe Invesco should consistently turn into a stronger investment proposition, with a sizeable dividend thrown in. Don't miss this ride.
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