Does the August share price for Patriot Transportation Holding, Inc. (NASDAQ:PATI) reflect what it's really worth? Today, we will estimate the stock's intrinsic value by taking the expected future cash flows and discounting them to their present value. One way to achieve this is by employing the Discounted Cash Flow (DCF) model. 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 want to learn more about discounted cash flow, the rationale behind this calculation can be read in detail in the Simply Wall St analysis model.
We are going to use a two-stage DCF model, which, as the name states, takes into account two stages of growth. The first stage is generally a higher growth period which levels off heading towards the terminal value, captured in the second 'steady growth' period. To begin with, we have to get estimates of the next ten years of cash flows. Seeing as no analyst estimates of free cash flow are available to us, we have extrapolate the previous free cash flow (FCF) from the company's last 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.
A DCF is all about the idea that a dollar in the future is less valuable than a dollar today, 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) estimate
|Levered FCF ($, Millions)||US$2.07m||US$1.98m||US$1.93m||US$1.91m||US$1.91m||US$1.92m||US$1.94m||US$1.97m||US$2.00m||US$2.04m|
|Growth Rate Estimate Source||Est @ -7.32%||Est @ -4.46%||Est @ -2.46%||Est @ -1.05%||Est @ -0.07%||Est @ 0.62%||Est @ 1.1%||Est @ 1.43%||Est @ 1.67%||Est @ 1.83%|
|Present Value ($, Millions) Discounted @ 8.0%||US$1.9||US$1.7||US$1.5||US$1.4||US$1.3||US$1.2||US$1.1||US$1.1||US$1.0||US$0.9|
("Est" = FCF growth rate estimated by Simply Wall St)
Present Value of 10-year Cash Flow (PVCF) = US$13m
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 8.0%.
Terminal Value (TV)= FCF2030 × (1 + g) ÷ (r – g) = US$2.0m× (1 + 2.2%) ÷ (8.0%– 2.2%) = US$36m
Present Value of Terminal Value (PVTV)= TV / (1 + r)10= US$36m÷ ( 1 + 8.0%)10= US$16m
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$29m. To get the intrinsic value per share, we divide this by the total number of shares outstanding. Compared to the current share price of US$9.4, the company appears around fair value at the time of writing. Valuations are imprecise instruments though, rather like a telescope - move a few degrees and end up in a different galaxy. Do keep this in mind.
We would point out that the most important inputs to a discounted cash flow are the discount rate and of course the actual cash flows. If you don't agree with these result, have a go at the calculation yourself and play with the assumptions. 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 Patriot Transportation Holding 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 8.0%, which is based on a levered beta of 0.969. 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.
Whilst important, the DCF calculation shouldn't be the only metric you look at when researching a company. DCF models are not the be-all and end-all of investment valuation. Instead the best use for a DCF model is to test certain assumptions and theories to see if they would lead to the company being undervalued or overvalued. For instance, if the terminal value growth rate is adjusted slightly, it can dramatically alter the overall result. For Patriot Transportation Holding, we've compiled three fundamental aspects you should further examine:
- Risks: Every company has them, and we've spotted 2 warning signs for Patriot Transportation Holding (of which 1 is a bit concerning!) you should know about.
- 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!
- Other Environmentally-Friendly Companies: Concerned about the environment and think consumers will buy eco-friendly products more and more? Browse through our interactive list of companies that are thinking about a greener future to discover some stocks you may not have thought of!
PS. The Simply Wall St app conducts a discounted cash flow valuation for every stock on the NASDAQGS every day. If you want to find the calculation for other stocks just search here.
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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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