We are initiating coverage on Carpenter Technology (CRS) with a Strong Buy investment rating and $50/share target price. Following a short period of trading weakness, we are comfortable with the lower entry point. The shares look undervalued today, especially after the consideration of better-than-expected survey results and backdrop of macroeconomic strength, rebounding channel sentiment, commodity nickel price inflation and enhanced commercial aero demand visibility. Market intelligence suggests the specialty materials group is at or near a summer inflection point which should be followed by a multi-year period of above-average top-line growth. Continue reading
Aerospace: Upgrading Upstream Suppliers On Stronger Aero Sales Outlook And Potential Bottleneck Benefits
We are making a rotational call within the aerospace coverage group, now favoring upstream suppliers that appear to be positioned to benefit from a changing commercial aircraft production environment. The investor narrative may shift to the premium forgers and/or specialty materials providers earlier-than-expected as the supply chain readies for a sharp inflection in demand for 737MAX or A320neo applications, looking beyond negative near-term earnings expectations. As such, we are changing ratings on a few companies that fit into that description. Today, we are formally upgrading Hexcel Corporation (HXL) and Haynes International (HAYN) to Strong Buy investment ratings and moving Allegheny Technologies (ATI) over to Outperform. We had previously rated all three Hold. Continue reading
We are not picking up any new market intelligence this month to suggest there is an upward bias to earnings expectations for the specialty materials peer group. Last month, we raised near-term forecasts to reflect the better-than-expected nickel-based alloy and jet engine demand trends. However, we see few similarities in the titanium space as volume growth is holding in negative territory and contacts are still forecasting negative full-year growth. The main difference between this market and other alloys is the excess inventory held by the aero supply chain which could push the recovery starting point 6-9 months to the right (for companies levered to commercial airframe applications). Continue reading
Positive data points and contact commentary collected during quarterly checks on the specialty materials group serves as the key catalyst behind the upward estimate revisions we applied to certain names within our coverage universe. Today, we raised estimates on Allegheny Tech (ATI) and Haynes International (HAYN) to reflect the upward bias associated with enhanced aerospace and turbine sales exposure. Continue reading
Feedback coming out of the specialty materials channel supports the bearish call we are making on the global titanium market and selected companies within the specialty materials peer group. Bottomline, raw material providers, mill contacts, metal distributors, fabricators, and premium forgers are all voicing concerns about an extended period of end-demand weakness, a difficult CY21 environment, operating inefficiencies, and destabilized pricing environment.
Names within in our coverage universe with titanium leverage include Allegheny Technologies (ATI), Howmet Aerospace (HWM), Carpenter Technology (CRS) and Haynes International (HAYN). Continue reading