Shares in food wholesaler Booker (LSE: BOK) are up by 2% today after it released a solid trading update. The first quarter of the year has seen sales at convenience stores Budgens and Londis rise by 10% versus the same period of last year, while Booker’s wholesale division had a decent quarter. It benefitted from improved customer satisfaction and cash profit, although non-tobacco sales fell by 0.7% on a like-for-like (LFL) basis as food price deflation continued.
Looking ahead, Booker is on track to meet full-year expectations and remains a financially sound business with a strong net cash position. Although Booker is expected to increase its earnings by 13% this year and a further 10% next year, its current valuation appears to price this in. For example, Booker trades on a price-to-earnings growth (PEG) ratio of 1.7 and while this isn’t sky-high, given the continued decline in LFL sales being experienced it seems to offer little in terms of a margin of safety. Therefore, 20% gains seem unlikely over the medium term.
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Also reporting today was budget airline easyJet (LSE: EZJ). Its passenger statistics for June show that it continues to deliver improving figures but is still suffering from a significant number of cancellations. For example, easyJet’s passenger numbers rose by 5.8% versus June 2015, with the load factor increasing from 92.7% to 94.1%. However, 852 flights were cancelled versus 487 in June 2015, mainly as a result of French air traffic control strikes.
Further strikes could lie ahead and cause additional disruption for easyJet. Therefore, its share price could continue to come under pressure following its 41% fall since the turn of the year. However, despite this risk and the potential fallout from Brexit, easyJet seems to be worth buying right now. It has a wide margin of safety, as indicated by its PEG ratio of 0.7. Therefore, for long-term investors who can cope with above average volatility and uncertainty, gains of substantially more than 20% are on the cards.
Meanwhile, Daejan Holdings (LSE: DJAN) has also reported today. The property investment company recorded a fall in pre-tax profit in its most recent financial year due to valuation gains made on investment property being lower than in the previous year. In fact, pre-tax profit fell from £278m in 2015 to £173m in 2016, but encouragingly for its investors, Daejan was able to report a rise in total rental income during the same period.
Furthermore, Daejan increased dividends per share for the year to 93p from 88p in the previous year. This puts it on a yield of 1.9%, which is still disappointing even though Daejan’s share price has fallen by 13% since the EU referendum. And due to uncertainty being high and the outlook for property being rather downbeat, there may be better opportunities elsewhere to generate a return of over 20%.