The first quarter of 2023 was a rocky one for the stock market. The good news is that volatility created many solid value stocks to buy. And, after all, a highly profitable firm bought at a sufficiently low price should reward investors with a solid margin of safety and the potential for well above-average returns. In fact, these seven value stocks to buy, in particular, have promising outlooks for the rest of 2023. And, as of this writing, all are selling for less than 15 times forward earnings meaning they are selling at valuations much below the S&P 500 as a whole.
Advance Auto Parts
Sociedad Química y Minera de Chile
Value Stocks to Buy: Goldman Sachs (GS)
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Bank stocks were slammed over the past month. And with understandable reason. Several prominent banks failed, and more are struggling to adapt to the rapidly-changing interest rate environment.
That said, investors shouldn’t give up on the whole sector. Banks are often among the best value stocks to buy, and the current industry consolidation will favor the industry leaders. That includes Goldman Sachs (NYSE:GS). Goldman is known for its skilled trading. The firm made profits in the 2008 financial crisis betting against failing mortgages, for example, while most other banks were caught horribly on the wrong side of the market. Goldman, with its world-class trading team and institutional banking chops, is in a great position to ride out the current volatility and make the most of shifting market opportunities.
Shares have pulled back nearly 15% from their recent highs. This puts GS stock at less than 10 times forward earnings. It also trades at just 1.0x book value which has been an excellent entry point for Goldman Sachs shares historically. While weak banks may continue to flounder, leaders like Goldman Sachs are set to take advantage and the current price marks a value opportunity.
Value Stocks to Buy: Verizon (VZ)
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Telecom stocks are usually viewed as stable blue-chip stocks. Unfortunately, the past year damaged that idea. Rival AT&T (NYSE:T) slashed its dividend following some ill-advised acquisitions which left it in an excessive amount of debt. However, I believe investors unfairly punished Verizon (NYSE:VZ) for other firms’ problems. Yes, it’s true that the telecom industry has faced heavy costs to roll out 5G and other new infrastructure. And competition from cable companies has pressured margins to an extent.
That said, telecom firms still retain their defensive traits. They offer gushers of cash flow and are recession-proof; people will keep paying the phone bill regardless of what is going on in the broader economy. VZ stock has fallen 25 percent over the past year. That’s a remarkable amount for a firm that is typically such a low-volatility stock. And with shares at today’s price, Verizon goes for just 8 times forward earnings while offering a 6.9% dividend yield.
Value Stocks to Buy: Advance Auto Parts (AAP)
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The used automobile industry had an incredible couple of years. In 2021 and 2022, used car prices went up sharply. In fact, cars were an appreciating asset during the pandemic, which is in stark contrast to the usual rapid depreciation seen for aging vehicles.
This came about due to the shortage of semiconductors and other inputs needed to manufacture new cars. In this environment, people were willing to spend more on used vehicle repair and maintenance, and it led to great times for car parts retailers. This period has now ended, and Advance Auto Parts (NYSE:AAP) stock took a hit because of it. Shares are down a shocking 46% over the past year. And yet, operating results aren’t anywhere near bad enough to justify that fact. Indeed, in the most recent earnings report, Advanced Auto Parts topped earnings expectations while growing revenues by 3% year-over-year.
These aren’t amazing results by any means, but hardly the ones you’d expect from a company that has lost nearly half its value, either. At the current price, AAP stock goes for just 10 times forward earnings while giving off a generous 5.17% dividend yield.
Global Payments (GPN)
Global Payments (NYSE:GPN) is a merchant acquirer company focused on small to mid-sized merchants. Merchant acquirers function as an intermediary between retailers and credit card companies, offering payment terminals, back office support, software, fraud prevention services, and so on needed to ensure swift and seamless transactions.
Global Payments made a huge move a few years ago completing a merger of equals with Total System Services. This gave Global Payments the size and scale to compete with the largest firms in the industry. However, the benefits of this merger got lost amid a huge downturn in the payments industry. As rivals like PayPal (NASDAQ:PYPL) have seen their share prices collapse, investors have sold off GPN stock as well.
But that’s a mistake. Global Payments has a track record of double-digit annualized earnings and revenue growth and it continues to post healthy numbers now. To that point, the stock now sells for less than 10 times forward earnings and analysts continue to expect double-digit earnings growth in 2023 and beyond. Even with all the problems other weaker peers are having within the industry, Global Payments is simply too cheap to make sense.
Tyson Foods (TSN)
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Tyson Foods (NYSE:TSN) is a leading food company whose main product lines include beef, pork, chicken, and prepared foods. Tyson is a commodity producer, meaning that most of its product sales are tied to cyclical market prices rather than having much pricing power. That’s a negative for Tyson compared to other packaged foods companies. However, TSN stock has sold off 34% over the past year. This more than makes up for the lower margins inherent in Tyson’s business model.
Why have shares dropped so far? That’s related to high animal prices, which are in turn driven by high grain prices which resulted in part from the war in Ukraine. Fortunately for Tyson and for meat eaters more generally, this inflationary problem won’t last forever. Farmers and ranchers address higher prices by raising more crops and cattle which will normalize market conditions in due time.
In the meanwhile, investors can get a bargain in TSN stock today. Even with earnings in a dip, shares are still going for just 13 times this year’s estimates. Tyson stock traded for nearly $100 per share in both 2019 and 2022, making today’s sub-$60 level an attractive one for investors with the patience to wait for a few quarters as the meat cycle resolves itself.
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Many investors have written off BP (NYSE:BP) after its years in the wilderness. Between the Deepwater Horizon disaster and BP’s rushed and poorly executed transition into the renewable energy space, BP stock has certainly failed to keep up with peers in recent years. However, it’s time to give BP stock a second look. That’s because the firm’s CEO, Bernard Looney, announced earlier this year that BP will be trimming its renewable energy investments while focusing more on traditional oil and gas. This should be just what BP investors were looking for. After all, the firm’s core energy assets remain highly profitable. To that point, shares are trading for less than 6x forward earnings at the moment.
Now that BP will spend less of those earnings on green energy while returning more to shareholders, BP can become a true gusher of profits once again. Shares yield 4.4% and there should be a sizable share buyback program adding to appeal as well.
Sociedad Química y Minera de Chile (SQM)
Sociedad Química y Minera de Chile (NYSE:SQM) is one of the world’s largest lithium companies. Hailing from Chile, it operates in one of the more stable and reliable low-cost mining countries in the world. Lithium is a promising metal going forward. As the world continues to adopt electric vehicles and other high-intensity battery applications, the demand for lithium should skyrocket.
Major vehicle makers such as Tesla Motors (NASDAQ:TSLA) have started trying to acquire their own lithium supplies to ensure against potential shortages. This gives investors a sense of the strategic importance of lithium supplies in the coming years. And SQM has tremendous reserves and current production capabilities.
SQM is also highly profitable. Shares are going for less than 7 times forward earnings while offering a 9% dividend yield. Shares have dipped thanks to fears of an economic slowdown. And while that is a legitimate risk for 2023, over the longer haul, lithium should remain in high demand.
On the date of publication, Ian Bezek held a long position in BP, GPN, VZ, and GS stock. The opinions expressed in this article are those of the writer, subject to the InvestorPlace.com Publishing Guidelines.
Ian Bezek has written more than 1,000 articles for InvestorPlace.com and Seeking Alpha. He also worked as a Junior Analyst for Kerrisdale Capital, a $300 million New York City-based hedge fund. You can reach him on Twitter at @irbezek.