What Fundamentals Would ben Graham Look for in Dominion Energy (D) Stock?

Based on the factors that Benjamin Graham considered in analyzing potential stock picks, Dominion Energy is not a quality investment. Only investors with a high risk tolerance and a solid investment thesis on the stock will be interested in this large-cap Electric Utilities company.

Dominion Energy Is Probably Overvalued

Graham devised the below equation to give investors a quick way of determining whether a stock is trading at a fair multiple of its earnings and its assets:

√(22.5 * 4 year average earnings per share (1.67) * 4 year average book value per share (31.786) = $34.56

At today's price of $50.74 per share, Dominion Energy is now trading 46.8% above the maximum price that Graham would have wanted to pay for the stock.

Even though the stock does not trade at an attractive multiple, it might still meet some of the other criteria for quality stocks that Graham listed in Chapter 14 of The Intelligent Investor.

Positive Retained Earnings From 2008 To 2022, An Acceptable Record Of Dividends, and Decreasing Earnings Per Share

Ben Graham wrote that an investment in a company with a record of positive retained earnings could contribute significantly to the margin of safety. Dominion Energy had positive retained earnings from 2008 to 2022 with an average of $6.11 Billion over this period.

Another one of Graham's requirements is for a 30% or more cumulative growth rate of the company's earnings per share over the last ten years.We are going to compare Dominion Energy's earnings per share averages from the two 'bookends' of the 16 year period for which we have data. The first bookend comprises the years 2007, 2008, and 2009, whose EPS values of $3.88, $3.16, and $2.17 average out to $3.07. Next we look at the years 2020, 2021, and 2022, whose values of $0.82, $3.98, and $1.09 average out to $1.96. The growth rate between the two averages does not meet Graham's standard since it is -36.16%.

Shareholders of Dominion Energy have received regular dividends since 2012. The company has returned an average dividend yield of 4.2% over the last five years.

Negative Current Asset to Liabilities Balance and Not Enough Current Assets to Cover Current Liabilities

Graham sought companies with extremely low debt levels compared to their assets. For one, he expected their current ratio to be over 2 and their long term debt to net current asset ratio to be near, or ideally under, under 1. Dominion Energy fails on both counts with a current ratio of 0.7 and a debt to net current asset ratio of -0.6.

According to Graham's analysis, Dominion Energy is likely a company of low quality, which is trading far above its fair price.

2020-02-28 2021-02-25 2022-02-24 2023-02-21
Revenue (MM) $14,401 $14,172 $13,964 $17,174
Gross Margins 68.5% 77.5% 74.8% 68.8%
Operating Margins 20.2% 28.9% 23.8% 23.8%
Net Margins 9.43% -2.83% 23.55% 5.79%
Net Income (MM) $1,358 -$401 $3,288 $994
Net Interest Expense (MM) -$1,486 -$1,377 -$1,354 -$966
Depreciation & Amort. (MM) -$2,977 -$2,836 -$2,768 -$3,113
Earnings Per Share $1.68 -$0.48 $4.06 $1.44
EPS Growth n/a -128.57% 945.83% -64.53%
Diluted Shares (MM) 809 831 810 836
Free Cash Flow (MM) $10,078 $11,558 $10,098 $10,731
Capital Expenditures (MM) -$4,874 -$6,331 -$6,061 -$7,031
Net Current Assets (MM) -$63,694 -$62,558 -$63,403 -$66,512
Current Ratio 0.61 0.64 0.84 0.73
Long Term Debt (MM) $28,998 $33,957 $37,426 $38,914
Net Debt / EBITDA 5.73 9.82 5.77 9.1
The above analysis is intended for educational purposes only and was performed on the basis of publicly available data. It is not to be construed as a recommendation to buy or sell any security. Any buy, sell, or other recommendations mentioned in the article are direct quotations of consensus recommendations from the analysts covering the stock, and do not represent the opinions of Market Inference or its writers. Past performance, accounting data, and inferences about market position and corporate valuation are not reliable indicators of future price movements. Market Inference does not provide financial advice. Investors should conduct their own review and analysis of any company of interest before making an investment decision.