Philip O'Sullivan's Market Musings

Financial analysis from Dublin, Ireland

Market Musings 11/10/11

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It’s been an interesting couple of days since my last blog, with Irish listed stocks in particular giving me a lot to mull over.


Yesterday Dragon Oil announced that it has farmed-in to an offshore prospect in Tunisia. This marks the group’s latest attempts to diversify from its current single producing asset (in Turkmenistan) model. A previous overseas foray, into Yemen, has to date proved disappointing. I like Dragon, due to its strong balance sheet (net cash was an incredible $1.5bn at the end of H1 2011), simple business model centred on growing output from the Cheleken field, from which it has been producing for many years and inexpensive valuation (EV/BOE of circa $2.8). Elsewhere within the energy space, Petroceltic had two positive announcements out yesterday – confirming that it has inked a deal on a new facility with Macquarie and also announcing successful results from its fraccing activities in Algeria. The shares marked up sharply on the back of this newsflow.


Aryzta peer CSM issued a profit warning, citing difficult economic conditions. Aryzta was one of the weakest performers on the ISEQ yesterday, presumably on the back of this announcement, but it should be noted that the Irish-Swiss concern recently issued a solid enough set of results.


Staying within the Irish food space, I note that Fyffes has returned to the markets to buy more of its own shares – in this case acquiring roughly 6% of its outstanding shares on Friday.


(Disclaimer: I am a shareholder in Bank of Ireland plc) In terms of what other bloggers are writing about, my old friend John McElligott has written a great blog post on both Bank of Ireland and FBD. I would agree with his views on both. For me BKIR is a complete punt here, while FBD offers remarkably good value at these levels for investors with a longer-term investment horizon.


Speaking of share recommendations, I was interested to see that my former employers Goodbody have initiated coverage on Easyjet with an “Add” recommendation. They have pitched their estimates well below consensus (5% below in FY12, 18% below in FY13) on macro concerns, which looks reasonable to me given recent updates from the likes of Flybe (the UK accounts for c. 40% of EZJ’s capacity).


A reminder that not all parts of the economy are struggling – Apple announced that pre-orders for its new iPhone 4S topped one million in a single day.


Last, but not least, Reuters has produced this very useful computer model which allows people to “stress-test” European banks under a range of different sovereign debt haircut scenarios.


Written by Philip O'Sullivan

October 11, 2011 at 2:17 pm

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