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TJX Stock Isn’t Attractive After Its Rally

TJX stock - TJX Stock Isn’t Attractive After Its Rally

Source: Mike Mozart via Flickr

TJX Companies (NYSE:TJX) has become a quietly impressive stock. The Framingham, Massachusetts-based retailer operates chains such as TJ Maxx, Marshall’s and HomeGoods. TJX stock price steadily rose from November 2017 until early September 2018. The rally occurred so slowly that it escaped the notice of most stock analysts. However, now that Wall Street has taken notice, investors must decide whether this rally still has room to run or if it’s too late to make money on TJX Companies stock.

TJX Stock Quietly Climbed

Since last November, TJX stock has quietly but steadily moved higher. Since hitting a low of $66.44 per share last November, it has risen by over 65%. TJX Companies stock appears to have moved higher for a few weeks, pause for a few more weeks, then resumed its move higher. Since early September, however, the TJX stock price has remained flat, sparking concerns that the slow, steady rally has ended.

I believe that more time is needed before we can decide whether TJX stock price has stopped rising. As I mentioned, TJX stock has traded in a tight range sometimes. In fact, that has occurred three times in the last year alone. Meanwhile, TJX Companies stock trades at a price-earnings ratio of about 24, above its five-year average price-earnings ratio of 21.5. I would not call TJX Companies stock cheap, but it has not yet reached bubble territory.

A surge in the profits generated by TJX could be driving the above-average valuations. After years of delivering profit growth below 10%, TJX expects its net income to jump 24.5% during its current fiscal year. Over the next five years, analysts predict that its annual profits will increase by an average of 11.5%.

Many of TJX’s Peers Have Also Rallied

However, after comparing TJX to its peers, I’m not very interested in buying TJX stock. Kohl’s (NYSE:KSS), Nordstrom (NYSE:JWN), and Macy’s (NYSE:M) have also rallied over the last six months or so. They trade at lower price-earnings ratios than TJX. I would not consider TJX Companies stock to be an underperformer, either. For example, Ross (NYSE:NASDAQ:ROST)  stock rose at a slower pace than TJX  but has a similar price-earnings ratio.

The rally of TJX’s peers shows that TJX stock rose more because of an industry trend than due to any company-specific catalysts. Retail stocks rallied because Wall Street began to understand that Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) would not completely destroy brick-and-mortar retailers after all. For this reason, investors started buying brick-and-mortar retail stocks in late 2017. I think that the rally in those stocks is mostly over, and I do not feel motivated to buy them. Moreover, investors should remember that these retailers, including TJX, do not have moats, as they have little more than name recognition to attract customers.

The dividend yield of TJX stock, currently about 1.4%, remains well below the S&P 500 average. However, the dividend of TJX Companies stock has also risen for 21 consecutive years. After four more consecutive annual hikes, TJX will attain “dividend aristocrat status.” That will likely attract more attention to the stock. Still, investors should wait at least three more years before investing based on this possible catalyst.

The Bottom Line on TJX Stock

Although TJX stock has enjoyed a quiet but impressive run, I would encourage investors not to buy the stock at current levels. TJX Companies stock price has increased by more than 65% since late last year. However, its valuation is now slightly above its historical average, and the stocks of its closest peers have risen by similar amounts.

TJX is not slated to report its earnings until at least Nov. 13. Honestly, I doubt the company will release any noteworthy news before its earnings. Although the rally could continue a little longer, in all likelihood, I believe it will grind to a halt in the same quiet manner with which it started.

As of this writing, Will Healy did not hold a position in any of the aforementioned stocks. You can follow Will on Twitter at @HealyWriting.


Article printed from InvestorPlace Media, https://investorplace.com/2018/10/investors-celebrate-buy-rally-tjx-stock/.

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