Is Now The Time To Buy Lonmin Plc, Nostrum Oil & Gas PLC & Premier Oil PLC?

Royston Wild considers whether investors should pile into Lonmin Plc (LON: LMI), Nostrum Oil & Gas PLC (LON: NOG) and Premier Oil PLC (LON: PMO).

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Today I am looking at some of the ‘movers and shakers’ in Wednesday business.

Stuck in a hole?

Another day, another day of extreme stock price volatility over at Lonmin (LSE: LMI). The platinum explorer was last 13% higher from Tuesday’s close following another leap in commodity values.

Lonmin has been particularly responsive to changes in broader investor sentiment in recent weeks. The company saw its share price treble in less than a month, topping out at 188p earlier in March, but a stalling commodity rally since then has seen Lonmin surrender much of these gains.

Of course investors can make a handsome profit if they time their share purchases right. But they can also be left nursing vast losses should they jump in at the wrong time.

And I believe anyone ploughing into Lonmin at the present time is in danger of suffering a severe headache. The platinum market’s chronic worsening supply balance leaves the stock at the mercy of a severe share price correction.

The economic cool-down in China continues to cast a shadow over total platinum consumption in the near-term and beyond, while swathes of recycled material entering the market causes further room for concern. Indeed, the World Platinum Investment Council expects the metal’s deficit to shrink to 135,000 ounces in 2016 from 380,000 ounces last year.

As a consequence the City does not expect Lonmin to break its run of losses until the year-to-September 2017 at the earliest, with expected earnings of 1.6 US cents per share leaving the company dealing on a huge P/E ratio of 34.9 times.

This earnings multiple sails comfortably outside the benchmark of 10 times or below, a figure that indicates stocks with extremely-high risk profiles like Lonmin.

With this in mind, I believe the commodities giant has plenty of room to fall.

Dicey drillers

A weaker US dollar has also helped resources prices gain ground in Wednesday business, helping many producers like Premier Oil (LSE: PMO) gain ground — indeed, the business was last dealing 14% higher from last night’s close as Brent moved back towards the $40 per barrel marker.

This rise was not enough to stop Nostrum Oil & Gas (LSE: NOG) losing ground, however, the company last dealing 7% lower following a disappointing trading update.

Nostrum advised that revenues fell 43% during 2015 to $449m, a result that drove sent pre-tax profit shuttling 77% lower to $72m.

The business has vowed to keep reducing operating costs in “the new oil price environment,” however, while Nostrum also expects to maintain production above the 40,000-barrel-per-day marker. Output during 2015 came in at 40,391 barrels per day.

But I believe that Nostrum is likely to remain under severe pressure as a lack of co-ordinated supply cuts from the world’s major producers, combined with stagnating demand growth, weighs on the oil industry. As such, I believe the fossil fuel specialist — along with Premier Oil — remains a risk too far at the present time.

Should you invest, the value of your investment may rise or fall and your capital is at risk. Before investing, your individual circumstances should be assessed. Consider taking independent financial advice.

Royston Wild has no position in any shares mentioned. The Motley Fool UK has no position in any of the shares mentioned. We Fools don't all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors.

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