Nike: Top Dow Underdog For 2017

01/31/2017 9:00 am EST

Focus: STOCKS

Charles Carlson

Editor, DRIP Investor

Many of you are familiar with my “worst-to-first” strategy of investing in Dow stocks. The investment concept was the subject of my book, Winning With the Dow’s Losers, explains Chuck Carlson, dividend expert and editor of DRIP Investor.

In a nutshell, the strategy says that the Dow’s worst performers in one year tend to bounce back nicely the following year. The strategy has done quite well the last two years.

At the beginning of 2015, I spotlighted McDonald’s (MCD) as a Dow “Underdog” ready to run, and the stock did just that, climbing more than 24% in 2015.

My underdog picks for 2016 — Wal-Mart Stores (WMT) and IBM (IBM) — have done reasonably well, too. Wal-Mart is up 13% while IBM has risen 21%.

So who is the top Underdog for 2017? The worst-performing stock in the Dow is Nike (NKE), and it’s not even close. The stock of this athletic-apparel retailer is down 16% versus a Dow Jones Industrial Average that is up 14% for the year.

Nike has had some issues in terms of growth this year. The company did show improved numbers in the most recent quarter ended November 30.

Per-share profits of $0.50 beat the consensus analysts’ estimate of $0.43. However, future orders grew just 2%, below the estimate of more than 5%.

Thus, you could see the stock remain under pressure in the near term, especially if investors do last-minute tax selling.

Still, Nike stock has a history of snapping back strongly following down periods, and I look for a decent rebound in 2017. The stock, yielding 1.4%, represents a good rebound play for contrarian investments.

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