Is Huron Consulting (HURN) an Appropriate Value Investor Stock?



Value investing is easily one of the most popular ways to find great stocks in any market environment. After all, who wouldn’t want to find stocks that go unnoticed and are attractive buys, or offer great discounts off their fair value?

One way to find these companies is to look at several key financial indicators and ratios, many of which are crucial in the process of selecting value stocks. Let’s put Huron Consulting Group Inc. HURN into this equation and find out if this is a good choice for value investors right now, or if investors who subscribe to this methodology should look elsewhere for the best choices:

P / E ratio

A key metric that value investors always look at is the price / earnings ratio, or PE for short. It shows us how much investors are willing to pay for every dollar in profit in any given stock, and it’s easily one of the most popular financial ratios in the world. The best use of the PE ratio is to compare the stock’s current PE ratio with: a) where this ratio has been in the past; b) how it compares to the industry / sector average; and c) how it compares to the market as a whole.

On this front, Huron Consulting has a year-over-year PE ratio of 24.6, as you can see in the chart below:

Image source: Zacks Investment Research

This level actually compares quite favorably to the market as a whole, as the PE for the S&P 500 is around 24.71. If we focus on the long term trend of PE, Huron Consulting’s current PE level puts it below its midpoint over the past five years.

Zacks investment researchImage source: Zacks Investment Research

Additionally, the stock’s PE compares favorably to Zacks’ business services sector year-over-year PE ratio of 32.23. At the very least, it indicates that the title is currently relatively undervalued compared to its peers.

Zacks investment researchImage source: Zacks Investment Research

We should also point out that Huron Consulting has a futures PE (price to earnings for this year) ratio of just 19.78, so it’s fair to say that a slightly more value-driven path may be ahead for the actions of Huron Consulting in the short term. too much.

P / S ratio

Another key indicator to note is the price / sales ratio. This approach compares the price of a given stock to its total sales, where a lower reading is generally considered better. Some people like this value metric more than others because it looks at sales, something that is much harder to manipulate with accounting tricks than profits.

Currently, Huron Consulting has a P / S ratio of approximately 1.32. That’s below the S&P 500 average, which currently sits at 5.04. Also, as we can see in the graph below, that number is below the highs of this particular stock in recent years.

Zacks investment researchImage source: Zacks Investment Research

On the contrary, HURN is in the lower end of its range over the period from a P / S metric, suggesting some level of undervalued trading, at least by historical standards.

Broad value outlook

Overall, Huron Consulting currently has a Zacks value score of A, which places it in the top 20% of all stocks we cover from this look. This makes Huron Consulting a solid choice for value investors.

What about the stock as a whole?

While Huron Consulting can be a good choice for value investors, there are many other factors to consider before investing in this name. In particular, it’s worth noting that the company has a Growth Score of F and a Momentum Score of C. This gives HURN a Zacks VGM Score – or its overall Fundamental Score – of A. (You can read more at Zacks style scores here >>)

Meanwhile, the company’s recent earnings estimates have been encouraging. The current year has seen five estimates increase in the last sixty days compared to three decreases, while the estimate for the year 2021 has seen three upward revisions against one downward in the same year. period.

This had a positive impact on the consensus estimate, as the current year’s consensus estimate increased by 19.7% in the past two months, while the year 2021 estimate ‘is improved by 1.4%. You can see the trend of the consensus estimate and recent stock price development in the chart below:

Huron Consulting Group Inc. Price and consensus

Huron Consulting Group Inc. Price and consensus

Huron Consulting Group Inc. price-consensus-chart | Huron Consulting Group Inc. Quote

Despite this positive trend, the stock has a Zacks Rank # 3 (Hold), which indicates the company’s near-term online performance expectations.

Final result

Huron Consulting is an inspired choice for value-oriented investors, as its incredible range of statistics is hard to beat on this front. A strong industry ranking (among the top 7% of over 250 industries) further inspires our confidence. In fact, over the past couple of years, Zacks’ consulting industry has clearly outperformed the market as a whole, as you can see below:

Zacks investment researchImage source: Zacks Investment Research

So despite a Zacks Rank # 3, we believe that bullish analyst sentiment and industry support factors make this value stock a compelling choice.

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.


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