December 2, 2020

car

automotive

Penske Automotive Group, Inc.’s (NYSE:PAG) Intrinsic Value Is Potentially 24% Below Its Share Price

How far off is Penske Automotive Group, Inc. (NYSE:PAG) from its intrinsic value? Using the most recent financial data, we’ll take a look at whether the stock is fairly priced by taking the expected future cash flows and discounting them to today’s value. We will take advantage of the Discounted Cash Flow (DCF) model for this purpose. Believe it or not, it’s not too difficult to follow, as you’ll see from our example!

Companies can be valued in a lot of ways, so we would point out that a DCF is not perfect for every situation. If you still have some burning questions about this type of valuation, take a look at the Simply Wall St analysis model.

See our latest analysis for Penske Automotive Group

Is Penske Automotive Group fairly valued?

We’re using the 2-stage growth model, which simply means we take in account two stages of company’s growth. In the initial period the company may have a higher growth rate and the second stage is usually assumed to have a stable growth rate. In the first stage we need to estimate the cash flows to the business over the next ten years. Where possible we use analyst estimates, but when these aren’t available we extrapolate the previous free cash flow (FCF) from the last estimate or reported value. We assume companies with shrinking free cash flow will slow their rate of shrinkage, and that companies with growing free cash flow will see their growth rate slow, over this period. We do this to reflect that growth tends to slow more in the early years than it does in later years.

Generally we assume that a dollar today is more valuable than a dollar in the future, so we need to discount the sum of these future cash flows to arrive at a present value estimate:

10-year free cash flow (FCF) forecast

2021 2022 2023 2024 2025 2026 2027 2028 2029 2030
Levered FCF ($, Millions) US$351.0m US$534.0m US$482.3m US$452.8m US$436.4m US$428.3m US$425.5m US$426.4m US$429.9m US$435.3m
Growth Rate Estimate Source Analyst x2 Analyst x1 Est @ -9.69% Est @ -6.12% Est @ -3.62% Est @ -1.86% Est @ -0.64% Est @ 0.22% Est @ 0.82% Est @ 1.24%
Present Value ($, Millions) Discounted @ 14% US$307 US$409 US$323 US$266 US$224 US$193 US$168 US$147 US$130 US$115

(“Est” = FCF growth rate estimated by Simply Wall St)
Present Value of 10-year Cash Flow (PVCF) = US$2.3b

After calculating the present value of future cash flows in the initial 10-year period, we need to calculate the Terminal Value, which accounts for all future cash flows beyond the first stage. For a number of reasons a very conservative growth rate is used that cannot exceed that of a country’s GDP growth. In this case we have used the 5-year average of the 10-year government bond yield (2.2%) to estimate future growth. In the same way as with the 10-year ‘growth’ period, we discount future cash flows to today’s value, using a cost of equity of 14%.

Terminal Value (TV)= FCF2030 × (1 + g) ÷ (r – g) = US$435m× (1 + 2.2%) ÷ (14%– 2.2%) = US$3.7b

Present Value of Terminal Value (PVTV)= TV / (1 + r)10= US$3.7b÷ ( 1 + 14%)10= US$978m

The total value, or equity value, is then the sum of the present value of the future cash flows, which in this case is US$3.3b. In the final step we divide the equity value by the number of shares outstanding. Relative to the current share price of US$53.2, the company appears reasonably expensive at the time of writing. Remember though, that this is just an approximate valuation, and like any complex formula – garbage in, garbage out.

Important assumptions

The calculation above is very dependent on two assumptions. The first is the discount rate and the other is the cash flows. You don’t have to agree with these inputs, I recommend redoing the calculations yourself and playing with them. The DCF also does not consider the possible cyclicality of an industry, or a company’s future capital requirements, so it does not give a full picture of a company’s potential performance. Given that we are looking at Penske Automotive Group as potential shareholders, the cost of equity is used as the discount rate, rather than the cost of capital (or weighted average cost of capital, WACC) which accounts for debt. In this calculation we’ve used 14%, which is based on a levered beta of 2.000. Beta is a measure of a stock’s volatility, compared to the market as a whole. We get our beta from the industry average beta of globally comparable companies, with an imposed limit between 0.8 and 2.0, which is a reasonable range for a stable business.

Looking Ahead:

Valuation is only one side of the coin in terms of building your investment thesis, and it ideally won’t be the sole piece of analysis you scrutinize for a company. The DCF model is not a perfect stock valuation tool. Preferably you’d apply different cases and assumptions and see how they would impact the company’s valuation. For example, changes in the company’s cost of equity or the risk free rate can significantly impact the valuation. Can we work out why the company is trading at a premium to intrinsic value? For Penske Automotive Group, there are three important factors you should explore:

  1. Risks: Case in point, we’ve spotted 3 warning signs for Penske Automotive Group you should be aware of, and 1 of them is concerning.
  2. Future Earnings: How does PAG’s growth rate compare to its peers and the wider market? Dig deeper into the analyst consensus number for the upcoming years by interacting with our free analyst growth expectation chart.
  3. Other High Quality Alternatives: Do you like a good all-rounder? Explore our interactive list of high quality stocks to get an idea of what else is out there you may be missing!

PS. The Simply Wall St app conducts a discounted cash flow valuation for every stock on the NYSE every day. If you want to find the calculation for other stocks just search here.

This article by Simply Wall St is general in nature. It does not constitute a recommendation to buy or sell any stock, and does not take account of your objectives, or your financial situation. We aim to bring you long-term focused analysis driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements or qualitative material. Simply Wall St has no position in any stocks mentioned.

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