U.S. Markets open in 8 hrs 31 mins

Is Stepan Company (NYSE:SCL) Potentially Undervalued?

Mercedes Harden

Want to participate in a short research study ? Help shape the future of investing tools and you could win a $250 gift card!

Stepan Company ( NYSE:SCL ), which is in the chemicals business, and is based in United States, led the NYSE gainers with a relatively large price hike in the past couple of weeks. With many analysts covering the stock, we may expect any price-sensitive announcements have already been factored into the stock’s share price. But what if there is still an opportunity to buy? Let’s take a look at Stepan’s outlook and value based on the most recent financial data to see if the opportunity still exists.

Check out our latest analysis for Stepan

What is Stepan worth?

The stock seems fairly valued at the moment according to my relative valuation model. I’ve used the price-to-earnings ratio in this instance because there’s not enough visibility to forecast its cash flows. The stock’s ratio of 20.9x is currently trading slightly above its industry peers’ ratio of 19.33x, which means if you buy Stepan today, you’d be paying a relatively reasonable price for it. And if you believe that Stepan should be trading at this level in the long run, there’s only an insignificant downside when the price falls to its real value. Although, there may be an opportunity to buy in the future. This is because Stepan’s beta (a measure of share price volatility) is high, meaning its price movements will be exaggerated relative to the rest of the market. If the market is bearish, the company’s shares will likely fall by more than the rest of the market, providing a prime buying opportunity.

Can we expect growth from Stepan?

NYSE:SCL Future Profit February 11th 19

Investors looking for growth in their portfolio may want to consider the prospects of a company before buying its shares. Buying a great company with a robust outlook at a cheap price is always a good investment, so let’s also take a look at the company’s future expectations. With profit expected to grow by 24% over the next year, the near-term future seems bright for Stepan. It looks like higher cash flow is on the cards for the stock, which should feed into a higher share valuation.

What this means for you:

Are you a shareholder? SCL’s optimistic future growth appears to have been factored into the current share price, with shares trading around its fair value. However, there are also other important factors which we haven’t considered today, such as the track record of its management team. Have these factors changed since the last time you looked at SCL? Will you have enough confidence to invest in the company should the price drop below its fair value?

Are you a potential investor? If you’ve been keeping tabs on SCL, now may not be the most advantageous time to buy, given it is trading around its fair value. However, the optimistic forecast is encouraging for SCL, which means it’s worth further examining other factors such as the strength of its balance sheet, in order to take advantage of the next price drop.

Price is just the tip of the iceberg. Dig deeper into what truly matters – the fundamentals – before you make a decision on Stepan. You can find everything you need to know about Stepan in the latest infographic research report . If you are no longer interested in Stepan, you can use our free platform to see my list of over 50 other stocks with a high growth potential .

To help readers see past the short term volatility of the financial market, we aim to bring you a long-term focused research analysis purely driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis does not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements.

The author is an independent contributor and at the time of publication had no position in the stocks mentioned. For errors that warrant correction please contact the editor at editorial-team@simplywallst.com .