Is there any value to be found in Fortescue Metals Group Limited, Premier Investments Limited, and Iress Ltd?

Credit: Kira

This week’s 52-week highs are a little eclectic, involving an iron ore producer, an international retail business, and an international financial software provider.

A couple of stocks only made the cut because of a momentary – significant – spike in share prices early in the week, but they’ve still been strong performers over the past 12 months. Here’s my take on whether they offer good value today:

Fortescue Metals Group Limited (ASX: FMG) – last traded at $2.75, up 26% for the year

Fortescue shares receive an honorary mention in today’s article for their high of $3.29, which they hit soon after open on Tuesday morning on the back of an 18% leap in the value of iron ore overnight. Unfortunately for shareholders, the surge in prices appears to be due to little more than anticipation of rising iron ore demand thanks to Chinese government policy, and not on anything concrete. Fortescue has done a cracking job of driving down costs and its proposed partnership with Brazilian giant Vale SA would also enhance Fortescue’s competitive position.

However, its wider industry is one characterised by great uncertainty thanks to falling steel production and demand, which will likely drive iron ore prices lower before steel prices improve. I don’t believe Fortescue shares are good value today, and believe they will fall further in the next six months.

Premier Investments Limited (ASX: PMV) – last traded at $14.28, up 20% for the year

Premier investments also receives an honorary mention after shares gapped up on Tuesday morning, trading as high as $15.22 before falling throughout the week. It’s uncertain what was behind the rise, although retail shares enjoyed a boost recently after a stronger-than-expected set of economic indicators was released last week. Premier has not yet released its interim results for the first half of 2016 (expected around 23 March), which means there is some uncertainty on how the business has performed. If last year’s results are anything to go by however, shareholders can expect a decent half. Smiggle UK was expected to open 16 new stores by Christmas 2015, and Peter Alexander stores have also been gathering momentum.

I expect Premier shares could rise further once the half-year results come in, although they’re not exactly cheap at the moment.

Iress Ltd (ASX: IRE) – last traded at $11, up 10% for the year

Iress shares surged most recently after their annual results were released two weeks ago, revealing decent revenue and profit increases as well as a number of new client wins, which could be a gateway to greater profits again in the 2016 financial year. Certainly the stock is priced for it, at 28 times earnings, although with sticky clients and booming growth in Asia, I can see what buyers like about Iress.

Arguably the company is fully priced now and I do not expect shares to rise further without positive news such as outperformance or new client wins.

Looking for more where that came from?

The technology that's going to REPLACE the Internet is already here...

Dollar for dollar, insiders are calling it one of the biggest new markets in the history of modern business...
NOW is the time to get in on the hush-hush industry that could be poised for growth of over 4,463%+ by 2020... And the 1 ASX stock that stands to grow YOUR money right alongside it! Simply click here to learn its name.

Motley Fool contributor Sean O'Neill has no position in any stocks mentioned. Unless otherwise noted, the author does not have a position in any stocks mentioned by the author in the comments below. The Motley Fool Australia has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Bruce Jackson.

Two New Stock Picks Every Month!

Not to alarm you, but you’re about to miss a very important event! Chief Investment Advisor Scott Phillips and his team at Motley Fool Share Advisor are about to reveal their latest official stock recommendation. The premium “buy alert” will be unveiled to members and you can be among the first to act on the tip.

Don’t let this opportunity pass you by – this is your chance to get in early!

Simply enter your email now to find out how you can get instant access.

By clicking this button, you agree to our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. We will use your email address only to keep you informed about updates to our website and about other products and services we think might interest you. You can unsubscribe from Take Stock at anytime. Please refer to our Financial Services Guide (FSG) for more information.