Friday, July 16, 2010

UPDATED: Archer Daniels Midland, Up in a Down Market: Credit Suisse Upgrades to Splendiferous (ADM)

UPDATE below.
The stock is only up 3 cents at $26.90 but green on the screen when the indexes (indices?) are down 2.4-2.6% catches ones eye.
The upgrade was actually to "Outperform", I get a kick out of Webster's definition of splendiferous:
extraordinarily or showily impressive
From SmallCapPulse:
Analyst Comments – Credit Suisse’s Robert Moskow upgraded Archer Daniels Midland (NYSE:ADM) this morning to OUTPERFORM, raising the price target from $30 to $34, citing the corn sweetener business as the primary catalyst. He noted the stock is trading at a “dismal” P/E of 9.5x forward EPS.
Key Takeaways:
·         Expects strong June quarter for corn sweeteners
·         Share repurchase provides downside protection
·         Ethanol is like a ‘call option’ – “the only part of ADM’s business more unloved than corn sweeteners is ethanol...MORE
The AP via MSN Money has more detail:
Archer Daniels Midland Inc. may benefit from higher prices for high fructose corn syrup in 2011, an analyst said Friday as he boosted his investment rating on the food and crop company's shares.
Credit Suisse analyst Robert Moskow lifted his rating on the stock to "Outperform" from "Neutral" and raised his estimates for 2011 above the average expectation of Wall Street analysts. He also boosted his target share price to $34 from $30.

Moskow said the changes are based purely on the company's corn sweetener business. He said investors don't like it because of the possible link between the sweetener and obesity. But he said he believes this concern is overdone.

Sales of high fructose corn syrup have soured in recent years. Producers blame the decline on a campaign that argues corn syrup is behind rising obesity in the U.S. and that favors sugar over the refined product, although most nutritionists find little difference between the two.

While some U.S. manufacturers are decreasing their use of the sweetener, exports to Mexico have increased, Moskow said. He said ADM's sweeteners business — 20 percent of the company's profits — should be strong in the quarter ending in June. In the U.S., demand for the product is increasing as soft drink sales improve because of price cuts made by grocers.

"It may take more than one quarter for the street to turn more positive on this part of (Archer Daniels Midland), but eventually we think the consensus estimates will go higher as the street anticipates better pricing for (high fructose corn syrup) in 2011," he said.

He now expects the company, based in Decatur, Ill., to earn $2.95 a share in fiscal 2011, up from his prior estimate of $2.65. Analysts expect the company to earn $2.87 per share in 2011, according to Thomson Reuters.