Sometimes a stock falls to levels so low, it almost doesn’t matter what an investor’s budget is — they have to buy at least a few shares to take advantage of the situation. With the market’s retreat lately, a great many stocks are at, or teasing, their recent low-water marks.
This presents some nearly irresistible opportunities for investors, particularly if they like high-yielding dividends. As prices go down, yields go up, and that dynamic has made both Target (NYSE: TGT) and AbbVie (NYSE: ABBV) excellent choices for bargain-hunters searching for quality companies with yields well above the current 1.7% average of S&P 500 index stocks.
For quite some time, Target was the retail stock that could do no wrong. The company repeatedly posted revenue growth and strong profitability, even through the pandemic, and there was little indication of serious trouble. That all came to a crashing halt with its first-quarter 2022 results. The company missed badly on the bottom line due largely to ballooning inflation and inventory issues.
Neither of these difficulties will melt away quickly, but at the same time, we know they’re not going to linger forever.
The aggressive discounting Target has been doing to clear its excess inventory will continue to dampen its profit margins, but eventually, the company will get inventory back to its typical, more reasonable, levels. Inflation might prove to be a more stubborn headwind. However, let’s keep in mind that Russia’s apparently unsustainable war in Ukraine and the (hopefully fading) pandemic were two big drivers of the ongoing supply chain disruptions that are fueling that inflation.
With an improving macroeconomic situation at its back, Target should return to delivering the envy-of-the-retail-sector profit margins that drew investors to its stock in recent years. At the moment, though, its forward P/E has shriveled to barely above 16, a very low number considering how effectively management cranked profitability higher in preceding quarters.
Earlier this month, to help maintain its Dividend King status, Target raised its payout by 20% — a gutsy move given the crushing disappointment of its Q1 earnings.
Management is smart and careful, and I don’t think they’d pull such a lever simply to keep shareholders on board, or to keep the renown conferred with Dividend King status. I feel they’re confident the company’s fundamentals will rebound. As they do, folks piling into the stock at current share prices will enjoy a 3.1% dividend yield. They should also have the pleasure of seeing that depressed stock rise again.
Another Dividend King with a tarnished crown is pharmaceutical sector giant AbbVie. The company currently has the distinction of being the entity behind the world’s best-selling drug: Humira.
The big catch with Humira, though, is that its patent protection expires next year, so the Mississippi River-sized revenue stream that it has historically produced will thin out quickly as it starts competing with biosimilars.
Yet AbbVie is far more than just one product. Two of its more recently approved drugs — Skyrizi and Rinboq, developed as replacements for Humira — together brought in over $4.5 billion in sales last year. That amounted to growth of more than 80% over the 2020 figure. Smart acquisitions, like that of Botox maker Allergan in 2020, have also beefed up its portfolio.
So the AbbVie growth train keeps barreling along. Thanks to those blockbusters and the acquisitions, its revenue nearly doubled from 2017 to 2021, landing at over $56 billion. Net profit, meanwhile, more than doubled over that stretch to almost $11.5 billion.
Like the best high-potential drug developers, AbbVie has a pipeline that is wide and deep. The company has a dizzying number of programs covering a range of maladies. Oncology is a particular strength, and the company is active in other high-interest areas such as immunology, neuroscience, and virology.
With the erosion of its share price — more due to general market gloominess than anything else — AbbVie is now a high-yield superstar in the healthcare sector. Its quarterly payout of $1.41 amounts to a yield of over 4%, trouncing even the bluest of the blue chip stocks in other industries.