Papa John's, US Airways and Other Top Performers in May
Here is a quick look at some of the top-performing service sector stocks in May. These companies all have a market cap of more than $500 million and their share prices are all more than 15% higher than 30 days ago.
AFC Enterprises (NASDAQ: AFCE) shares are trading more than 45% higher year to date, including up about 23% in the past month. The recent first-quarter report of the Atlanta-based franchiser and operator of Popeyes restaurants sent shares to a multiyear high. AFC has a long-term EPS growth forecast of 12.0% and a return on equity of 163.2%. Over the past six months, the stock has outperformed competitor Yum! Brands (NYSE: YUM) and the broader markets.
The Fresh Market (NASDAQ: TFM) is trading more than 45% higher than at the beginning of the year after a surge of more than 23% in the past week to a new high. The supermarket chain operator just posted its fifth-consecutive quarter of double-digit revenue growth. The $2.8 billion market cap company has a long-term EPS growth forecast of 21.0%. The stock has outperformed rival Kroger (NYSE: KR) and the broader markets over the past six months.
Liquidity Services (NASDAQ: LQDT) is more than 206% higher than a year ago and recently hit a multiyear high. The operator of online auction marketplaces reported better-than-expected results for the most recent quarter. The Washington, DC-based company has a long-term EPS growth forecast of 29.7% and a return on equity of 21.9%. Over the past six months, the stock has outperformed eBay (NASDAQ: EBAY) and the broader markets.
Pandora Media (NYSE: P) is up more than 25% in the past month but only up a little over 7% year to date. The Internet radio company beat top line and bottom line estimates in its most recent report. The company is based in Oakland, Calif., and has a market cap of $1.7 billion. Its long-term EPS growth forecast is 43.7%. Short interest is 11.8% of the float. The stock's performance has been in line with Sirius XM Satellite Radio (NASDAQ: SIRI) over the past six months.
Papa John's International (NASDAQ: PZZA) is up almost 18% in the past month, but has pulled back more than 7% from a recent multiyear high. This Louisville, Ky.-based pizza purveyor exceeded consensus estimates for the first quarter and raised its full-year guidance. It has a market cap of %1.1 billion. Its P/E ratio is less than the industry average and the return on equity is 25.8%. The stock has outperformed rival Domino's Pizza (NYSE: DPZ) over the past six months.
Sonic (NASDAQ: SONC) is more than 26% higher year to date but still about 27% below the 52-week high. Analysts predict that it will post results that are essentially flat for the current quarter and for the full year. The drive-in restaurant operator is based in Oklahoma City. Its operating margin is higher than the industry average. Over the past six months, the stock has outperformed larger competitors McDonald's (NYSE: MCD) and Wendy's (NASDAQ: WEN).
US Airways Group (NYSE: LCC) is more than 160% higher year to date and reached a new multiyear high yesterday. The Tempe, Ariz.-based airline rose as analysts upgraded the industry due in part to lower fuel costs. It has a $2.1 billion market cap and a P/E ratio of 10.6. The long-term EPS growth forecast is 38.5% and the return on equity is 275.3%. The stock has outperformed competitors such as Delta Air Lines (NYSE: DAL) and Southwestern Airlines (NYSE: LUV) over the past six months.
See also: Trade Setups To Watch on Friday, June 1
Bullish: Investors also might want to consider the following trades:
- ProShares Ultra Consumer Services (NYSE: UCC) is up more than 21% year to date.
- iShares Dow Jones US Consumer Services (NYSE: IYC) is up more than 10% year to date.
- EGShares Consumer Services GEMS ETF (NYSE: VGEM) is up more than 2% year to date.
Traders may prefer to consider these alternative positions:
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Tags: AFC Enterprises, Delta Air Lines, domino's pizza, EBAY, Fresh Market, Kroger, Liquidity Services, McDonald's, Pandora Media, Papa John's, Sirius XM Satellite Radio, sonic, Southwestern Airlines, US Airways Group, wendy's, YUM! Brands