One Thing To Consider Before Buying Puma Biotechnology Inc (NASDAQ:PBYI)

If you are looking to invest in Puma Biotechnology Inc’s (NASDAQ:PBYI), or currently own the stock, then you need to understand its beta in order to understand how it can affect the risk of your portfolio. Generally, an investor should consider two types of risk that impact the market value of PBYI. The first type is company-specific risk, which can be diversified away by investing in other companies to reduce exposure to one particular stock. The second type is market risk, one that you cannot diversify away, since it arises from macroeconomic factors which directly affects all the stocks in the market.

Not all stocks are expose to the same level of market risk. The most widely used metric to quantify a stock’s market risk is beta, and the market as a whole represents a beta of one. A stock with a beta greater than one is considered more sensitive to market-wide shocks compared to a stock that trades below the value of one.

See our latest analysis for Puma Biotechnology

What is PBYI’s market risk?

Puma Biotechnology’s beta of 0.17 indicates that the stock value will be less variable compared to the whole stock market. This means the stock is more defensive against the ups and downs of a stock market, moving by less than the entire market index in times of change. PBYI’s beta implies it may be a stock that investors with high-beta portfolios might find relevant if they wanted to reduce their exposure to market risk, especially during times of downturns.

NasdaqGS:PBYI Income Statement May 25th 18
NasdaqGS:PBYI Income Statement May 25th 18

Could PBYI’s size and industry cause it to be more volatile?

PBYI, with its market capitalisation of US$1.93B, is a small-cap stock, which generally have higher beta than similar companies of larger size. But, PBYI’s industry, biotechs, is considered to be defensive, which means it is less volatile than the market over the economic cycle. Therefore, investors can expect a high beta associated with the size of PBYI, but a lower beta given the nature of the industry it operates in. This is an interesting conclusion, since its size suggests PBYI should be more volatile than it actually is. There may be a more fundamental driver which can explain this inconsistency, which we will examine below.

Can PBYI’s asset-composition point to a higher beta?

During times of economic downturn, low demand may cause companies to readjust production of their goods and services. It is more difficult for companies to lower their cost, if the majority of these costs are generated by fixed assets. Therefore, this is a type of risk which is associated with higher beta. I test PBYI’s ratio of fixed assets to total assets in order to determine how high the risk is associated with this type of constraint. Considering fixed assets account for less than a third of the company’s overall assets, PBYI seems to have a smaller dependency on fixed costs to generate revenue. Thus, we can expect PBYI to be more stable in the face of market movements, relative to its peers of similar size but with a higher portion of fixed assets on their books. Similarly, PBYI’s beta value conveys the same message.

What this means for you:

You may reap the benefit of muted movements during times of economic decline by holding onto PBYI. Its low fixed cost also means that, in terms of operating leverage, its costs are relatively malleable to preserve margins. What I have not mentioned in my article here are important company-specific fundamentals such as Puma Biotechnology’s financial health and performance track record. I urge you to complete your research by taking a look at the following:

  1. Future Outlook: What are well-informed industry analysts predicting for PBYI’s future growth? Take a look at our free research report of analyst consensus for PBYI’s outlook.
  2. Past Track Record: Has PBYI been consistently performing well irrespective of the ups and downs in the market? Go into more detail in the past performance analysis and take a look at the free visual representations of PBYI’s historicals for more clarity.
  3. Other High-Performing Stocks: Are there other stocks that provide better prospects with proven track records? Explore our free list of these great stocks here.