Huntington Bancshares Is A Great Opportunity For Value Investors

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Jun 24, 2015
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Huntington Bancshares (

HBAN, Financial) has shown strong earnings growth over the last few years, which may garner some attention from prospective investors; however, Benjamin Graham, the father of value investing, taught that the most important aspect to consider is whether the company is trading at a discount relative to its intrinsic value. It is through a thorough fundamental analysis that the investor is able to make a determination about a potential investment's merits.

The model is inspired by the teachings of Benjamin Graham and considers numerous metrics intended to help the investor reduce risk levels. The first part of the analysis is to determine whether the company is suitable for the very conservative defensive investor or the less conservative enterprising investor, who is willing to spend a greater amount of time conducting further research.

In addition, Graham strongly suggested that investors avoid speculation in order to remove the subjective elements of emotion. This is best achieved by utilizing a systematic approach to analysis that will provide investors with a sense of how a specific company compares to another. By using the ModernGraham method, one can review a company's historical accomplishments and determine an intrinsic value that can be compared across industries.


Defensive Investor – Must pass all six of the following tests: Score = 4/6

  1. Adequate Size of Enterprise – Market capitalization of at least $2 billion - PASS
  2. Earnings Stability – Positive earnings per share for at least 10 straight years - FAIL
  3. Dividend Record – Has paid a dividend for at least 10 straight years - PASS
  4. Earnings Growth – Earnings per share has increased by at least one-third over the last 10 years, using three-year averages at the beginning and end of the period - FAIL
  5. Moderate PEmg (price over normalized earnings) Ratio – PEmg is less than 20 - PASS
  6. Moderate Price-to-Assets – PB ratio is less than 2.5 or PB x PEmg is less than 50 - PASS

Enterprising Investor – Must pass all 3 of the following tests or be suitable for a Defensive Investor: Score = 3/3

  1. Earnings Stability – Positive earnings per share for at least 5 years - PASS
  2. Dividend Record – Currently pays a dividend - PASS
  3. Earnings Growth – EPSmg greater than that 5 years ago - PASS

Valuation summary

Key data

Recent Price $11.59
MG Value $28.11
MG Opinion Undervalued
Value Based on 3% Growth $10.59
Value Based on 0% Growth $6.21
Market Implied Growth Rate 3.69%
PEmg 15.88
PB Ratio 1.48

Balance Sheet - March 2015

Total Debt $5,159,000,000
Total Assets $68,003,000,000
Intangible Assets $751,000,000
Total Liabilities $61,541,000,000
Outstanding Shares 823,800,000

Earnings Per Share

2015 (estimate) $0.78
2014 $0.72
2013 $0.72
2012 $0.71
2011 $0.59
2010 $0.19
2009 -$6.14
2008 -$0.44
2007 $0.25
2006 $1.92
2005 $1.77

Earnings Per Share - ModernGraham

2015 (estimate) $0.73
2014 $0.67
2013 $0.16
2012 -$0.42
2011 -$1.02
2010 -$1.50

Dividend History


Competitive comparison

Huntington Bancshares is very attractive when compared to some of its competitors. For example, a ModernGraham valuation of Hudson City Bancorp (HCBK) indicates the company is not suitable for Defensive Investors or Enterprising Investors and significantly overvalued while a ModernGraham valuation of Bank of America (BAC) finds that company to also be unsuitable for both investor types and overvalued at the present time.


Huntington Bancshares passes the initial requirements of the Enterprising Investor but not the more conservative Defensive Investor. Specifically, the Defensive Investor is concerned by the insufficient earnings growth and stability over the last ten years, while the Enterprising Investor has no initial concerns. As a result, all Enterprising Investors should feel very comfortable proceeding to the next part of the analysis, which is a determination of the company's intrinsic value.

When it comes to that valuation, it is critical to consider the company's earnings history. In this case, it has grown its EPSmg (normalized earnings) from a loss of $1.02 in 2011 to an estimated gain of $0.73 for 2015. This level of demonstrated growth outpaces the market's implied estimate for annual earnings growth of 3.69% over the next 7-10 years.

In recent years, the company's actual growth in EPSmg has averaged around 34% annually, and while the ModernGraham valuation model reduces the actual growth to a more conservative figure when making an estimate, it still returns an estimate of intrinsic value well above the current price, indicating that Huntington Bancshares is significantly undervalued at the present time.

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