Home Depot (HD) Sales Rise 23.2% – Is It A Buy Now?

Back in August I showed you 2 Reasons To Avoid Home Depot (HD) Stock.

Today, I want to give you an update on them after they released earnings by answering the question – Home Depot Sales Rise 23.2% – Is It A Buy Now? 

You can read the past article on Home Depot in full by using the link above…

But if you don’t want to; here’s a quick recap of why I told you to avoid its stock in the Summer.

2 Reasons To Avoid Home Depot

  1. It’s Overvalued

As of this writing Home Depot (HD) is a $308.4 billion market cap home improvement store.

From January 1st, 2020 to today its stock is up 30.5% this year…. From $219.66 on January 2nd, 2020 to $286.75 per share as of this writing.

And it’s up 88.5% from its low in March 2020 when the coronavirus pandemic first hit… From $152.15 per share to $286.75 as of this writing.

This is a wild ride this year for Home Depot stock.  And it leads to the company being overvalued now.

Its P/E is 22.9.

Its P/CF is 15.5.

And its forward P/E is 25.6.

On all these metrics I look to buy investments below 20 to consider them for investment.

Home Depot is above these numbers on average which means its overvalued.

And this means investing in its stock today gives you no margin of safety in investing terminology.

When you invest in stocks that have a margin of safety it makes the investment safer.  And it also means you should expect to earn higher returns owning its stock in the coming years.

The inverse of this is also true…

When you invest in a stock without a margin of safety it makes the investment riskier.  And it also means you should expect to earn less owning its stock going forward.

This lack of a margin of safety is the category Home Depot falls into right now.

Its stock is up so much mainly because…

  • Its continued performing well during this crisis so far and should continue doing so.

This is because more people are stuck at home so they’re doing more home improvement projects.

And this led to fantastic earnings the company just released on August 18th, 2020.

This is great of course for Home Depot and its shareholders…

But there’s also something else that lowers the margin of safety for Home Depot and makes it riskier…

2. It’s Got A Lot Of Debt

As of the most recent quarter Home Depot’s balance sheet is made up of 105.9% of total liabilities.

In other words, after subtracting total liabilities from total assets there’s a negative number.  This means after subtracting debt from assets that the stocks equity – the shares you buy on the market – are worth less than $0.

It’s also why I can’t tell you what its debt/equity ratio is like I normally do in these articles.  Because there’s no equity left over after subtracting debt.

This is rare when you see this at an operating company.  But it’s horrible.

And in terms of absolute dollar numbers it has $41.8 billion in short term and long-term debt and capital leases.

I want to invest in safe stocks that will be around for decades to come to help me build wealth over the long term.  This helps insure I lose as little money as possible over time.

Typically, this means I invest in companies that have little to no debt compared to their cash and equity.

And in most cases I want to invest in stocks that have debt to equity ratios below 1.

Home Depot does produce enormous profits and cash flows which allows it to sustain and support this debt.

But the large debt does make me uncomfortable… Especially with the enormous uncertainty related to the coronavirus.

Just because it’s doing well so far in this pandemic doesn’t mean it will continue performing well going forward.

And its debt lowers the margin of safety even more with Home Depot stock.

None of this means I think Home Depot will crash and burn…

I don’t.

I think Home Depot will continue performing well and increasing its dividend payouts.

But due to its overvaluation you won’t earn as high of returns as you could if you waited to buy its stock…

Because of this I recommend not buying Home Depot stock right now.

If you want to buy Home Depot, I recommend you wait until it’s cheaper and its debt levels are lower before doing so… Because in that case it’s a fantastic all-around investment that is less risky and will earn you higher investment returns.

Until then… Hold off on buying it though.

And remember if you want to compare this to Lowe’s you can do so by clicking to see the Lowe’s article here

***

This thesis to avoid Home Depot stock continued to play out after it released its most up to date quarterly earnings on November 17th, 2020. Sort of…

  • Revenues rose 23.2% in the year-to-year quarterly period to $33.5 billion.
  • Net income rose 23.9% in the year-to-year quarterly period to $3.4 billion.
  • And earnings per share rose 25.7% in the year-to-year quarterly period to $3.18 per share.

This is all fantastic.

Bad news is that its still not cheap enough to buy though.

As of this writing its P/E is 24.4.

Its P/CF is 14.4.

And its forward P/E is 22.1.

Plus, it still has far too much debt for my liking.

This now stands at $37.7 billion when combining debt and operating leases.

Bottom line…  While these are both better now than they were back in August… They’re still not good enough for me to recommend you buying their stock.

For this reason – and these adding more risk – continue avoiding Home Depot for now even though its crushing earnings.

Click here to see some of the stocks we recommend to Depression Proof Your Portfolio.

Disclosure – Jason Rivera is a 13+ year veteran value investor who now spends much of his time helping other investors earn higher than average investment returns safely. He does not have any holdings in any securities mentioned above and the article expresses his own opinions. He has no business relationship with any company mentioned above.

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