Some companies have been badly hurt by the coronavirus, yet the damage is temporary. That is what insiders are saying loud and clear at MGM Resorts (MGM); and they’re saying it convincingly, by opening their wallets rather than their mouths, asserts Mark Skousen, growth stock expert and editor of Home Run Trader.
Based in Las Vegas, MGM Resorts is one of the world’s most widely recognized hotel and gaming companies, as well as a member of the S&P 500.
The firm has 30 best-in-class hotels and casinos, including some of the most recognized brands in the industry: Bellagio, ARIA, MGM Grand, Mandalay Bay, The Mirage, New York -- New York, Luxor, Excalibur, Circus Circus and many others.
In addition to iconic destinations, the company offers fine dining, luxury spas and many top-name resident artists, including Lady Gaga and Cher.
MGM continues to expand in the United States and around the world. It recently acquired the operations of Empire City Casino in New York and Hard Rock “Rocksino” in Northfield, Ohio, between Akron and Cleveland. Two years ago, the company opened MGM Springfield in Massachusetts, MGM COTAI in Macau and the first Bellagio-branded hotel in Shanghai.
Fortune magazine includes MGM on its elite list of the World’s Most Admired Companies. Of course, casinos and resorts have seen business come to an abrupt halt due to the spread of the coronavirus.
Shares of MGM have plunged from a 52-week high of nearly $35 to approximately a third of that. At current levels, MGM sells for just three times trailing earnings and only three quarters of book value.
While it’s difficult to forecast near-term earnings, the stock is preposterously cheap. And insiders know it. Over the past week, Director Paul Salem bought 522,000 shares, an investment of $5.9 million. President and CEO William Hornbuckle and Treasurer and CFO Corey Ian Sanders purchased shares, too.
Not to be outdone, Director Keith Meister bought 1.6 million shares, an investment of over $19.6 million. (He now owns more than 22.5 million shares.) Meister is hardly a novice investor. He is Managing Partner and Chief Investment Officer of Corvex Management, which owns more than 3% of MGM’s outstanding shares.
He also has extensive boardroom experience with Yum! Brands, The Williams Companies, ADT Corp, Ralcorp Holdings, Motorola and American Casino & Entertainment Properties.
He recognizes that MGM will bounce back from the coronavirus eventually -- and that the stock is deeply undervalued. I’m positive that it won’t be long, perhaps even next month, when Vegas is likely to reopen for business. When that happens, expect MGM and other gambling stocks to skyrocket.