Dividends4Life: Somewhere Between Dirt Cheap and Bloody Expensive

Somewhere Between Dirt Cheap and Bloody Expensive

Posted by D4L | Saturday, February 14, 2015 | | 0 comments »

The S&P 500 has more than tripled in value since early 2009. It's one of the best five-year periods in market history, roughly matching the 1995-2000 bull market that created one of the largest bubbles ever. What's that mean for market values today? Depends who you ask. James Paulsen, chief investment strategist at Wells Capital Management, noted last week that the median S&P 500 company now trades at the highest price-to-earnings ratio since his records began in 1950.

The only reason the market as a whole doesn't look as overvalued as the median component is because some of the S&P 500's largest companies that carry the most weight in the index, like ExxonMobil (NYSE: XOM) and Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL), are still fairly cheap. The median company is also near a record high measured on price-to-book value and price-to-cash flow. These are eye-opening statistics that show how much the rally of the last five years may have borrowed from future returns. But then again... There are all kinds of ways to value the market. None is necessarily right or wrong, because what matters -- what moves markets -- is whatever investors care about at a given moment. And what do people care about right now? Dividends, for one.

Source: Motley Fool

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