by Tom Taulli | July 13, 2011 3:06 am
In light of several major bailouts and a possible default on Greece’s horizon, Greek stocks seem like a poor investment. In fact, the country has been forced to take severe austerity measures and is selling off state assets. Greece even was rumored to be selling off some of its islands.
However, it is during such dire times that investors can find a few gems. As Baron Rothschild once said, “The time to buy is when there’s blood in the streets.”
One stock that looks attractive right now is DryShips (NASDAQ: DRYS), which is based in Athens. The company operates drybulk carrier vessels, as well as deepwater drilling rigs.
Analysts have been skeptical about DryShips. So far this year, the shares are off about 25%.
However, I think the concerns are overblown. For example, there are fears about DryShips’ debt load. And while it is substantial, the company likely will not default. There should be enough liquidity to deal with upcoming maturities.
In fact, DryShips should see a ramp-up in revenues. The main driver is fairly robust crude oil prices. Consider that even when the International Energy Authority released 60 million barrels from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, it had only a temporary effect. The fact is there is little world capacity, and as a result, cargo ships likely will have higher day rates.
Another key driver for DryShips is the increased activity in deepwater drilling in the Gulf of Mexico. It’s increasingly much easier to obtain permits, and global oil companies realize this region is becoming critical as it gets more difficult to boost reserves.
Finally, DryShips is likely to benefit from the expected spin-off of its Ocean Rig business, which currently trades on the Norwegian OTC market. The transaction is likely to unlock substantial value.
Because of this combination of factors, I think shares could hit about $6.50 — a nice move considering the current price is around $4.
As of this writing, Hilary Kramer did not own a position in any of the stocks named here.
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