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When it comes to adopting an investment philosophy, what could be more appealing to newcomers to share markets than the common-sense maxim, buy low, sell high. 
Everyone loves a bargain, especially with the prospect of reaping handsome rewards somewhere off in time.  Buy low, sell high, is the trademark of value investors the world over.  A review of some of history’s all-time great investors points to the likes of Benjamin Graham, considered the father of value investing, and to the current leading and most successful proponent of this investing philosophy, legendary US investor Warren Buffet.
Skeptics looking beyond common-sense wonder how one defines “low.”  The Buffets of the world look to the value of the company against its current share price.  The most common valuation method is DCF, or discounted cash flow analysis.  
From investopaedia.com we find a definition and a formula for DCF:
• DCF analyses use future free cash flow projections and discounts them, using a required annual rate, to arrive at present value estimates. A present value estimate is then used to evaluate the potential for investment. If the value arrived at through DCF analysis is higher than the current cost of the investment, the opportunity may be a good one.
• Calculated as:
• DCF = [CF1 / (1+r)1] + [CF2 / (1+r)2] + … + [CFn / (1+r)n] 
• CF = Cash Flow
• r= discount rate (WACC)
• DCF is also known as the Discounted Cash Flows Model.
How many retail investors have the time and the skill to use the DCF model?  What’s more, skeptics also point to the fact a low stock price is a measure of market sentiment, or perception, about the company.  If you believe perception tops reality, it may be some time before the market catches up with the true value of the company, as value investors believe will inevitably happen.
On the opposite end of the investing philosophy spectrum we find proponents of growth investing, with its seemingly contradictory maxim, buy high, sell higher.  The contradiction here is the common-sense belief that what goes up, must come down.  While it is true even the best performing growth stocks do experience price drops over time, the overall price movement trajectory is upward.  Many successful growth stocks defy the advice of market experts that they are “too expensive” and continue to appreciate.  
For the sake of comparison, we can look at one of Warren Buffet’s favorite value stocks, US Coca-Cola (NYSE:KO).  Over the past ten years, KO is up an admirable 79%.  However, the performance of red-hot growth stocks Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:APPL) and Amazon.com Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) over the same period sheds light on the overwhelming attraction of growth stocks to retail investors, as seen in the price performance chart over ten years from the US version of Morningstar.com:

Advocates of both investing approaches face the same dual dilemma – where do you find investment targets and how can you discriminate the wheat from the chaff?
Value investors frequently scour the 52 Week Low List while their growth-minded counterparts look to the 52 Week High List.  For growth investors obvious signals are analyst growth forecasts as well as historical earnings growth performance.  In addition, there are profit margins, return on equity (ROE), and stock price performance.
The following table lists four stocks that recently made new 52 Week Highs along with relevant metrics that make them potential growth investments.

For both value and growth investors, finding the perfect stock with the best metrics in all categories is indeed a rarity.  Numbers and other factors are always subject to interpretation and judgement.  The best numbers tell you nothing about the condition of the market in which the company operates.  Comparisons of profit margins and other metrics may be helpful indicators, but investors need to be mindful that sector classifications often include companies with wildly divergent business models.
Some would argue the most relevant characteristic is price movement, as reflected in yearly gains and average annual rates of total shareholder return (share price appreciation plus dividends.)  Even here, interpretation and judgment are required, as the market sentiment can get it wrong from time to time.  
PWR Holdings (PWH) is the only stock in the table to outperform its sector competitors in profit margin and ROE on a trailing twelve-month basis but lacks a historical track record. The company is a relative newcomer to the ASX, listing on 30 November of 2015. PWR designs and produces a variety of cooling systems – radiators, intercoolers, and engine and transmission oil coolers – for both the high-performance racing niche market as well as for the automotive OEM (Original Equipment Manufacture) aftermarket.  This is a high-tech company that also creates customised cooling solutions for the racing industry and claims to be the world leader in cooling research and development.
The company has operations in three continents and counts among its customers entrants in some of the world’s premier racing organisations, most notably in the US including NASCAR, IndyCar, NHRA drag racing and IMSA sports cars. 
In its first full year of operation on the ASX the company reported Full Year Financial Results featuring a modest 2% revenue increase and a 7% rise in profit.  For the Half Year 2018 the company reported a revenue increase of 10.6%, including a newly acquired US operation, and a rise in profit of 14%. Excluding one-time adjustments, net profit after tax (NPAT) was up 59%. PWR also reported $3.2 million cash on hand and no debt.  Finally, the company announced a $10 million-dollar expansion plan to increase capacity to meet rising demand in Australia, fully funded through existing cash and financing facilities.
For investors concerned about the future of automotive racing, the penetration of Electric Vehicles (EVs) into the racing world is highly unlikely.
Rhipe Limited (RHP) operates in a sector with high growth potential – cloud computing.  The company serves IT businesses that need for themselves or provide their customers access to the cloud through consulting services and subscription software licenses.  Rhipe operates throughout Southeast Asia, with an impressive list of software license vendors including Microsoft, IBM, VMware, and Citrix.  In 2018 Rhipe was named the Microsoft Partner of the Year for Australia.
The company has increased revenue in each of the last three Fiscal Years while struggling to post a profit before posting a profit of $2.5 million in FY 2017, with only $15 thousand coming in the first half.  The Half Year 2018 results were impressive, with a 22% revenue increase and a 7,000% increase in NPAT, up from the $15k to $1.1 million.
Cleanaway Waste Management (CWY) announced the acquisition of rival operator Tox Free Solutions (TOX) back in December with round approval from shareholders of both companies and analysts alike.  Already the leading waste management company in Australia, the deal, now approved by the ACCC (Australian Competition and Consumer Commission), could serve the company well in facing the competition from new arrival (listed in May of 2017) to the sector, Bingo Industries (BIN).
The company handles both solid and liquid waste, operating in three segments – Solid Waste; Liquids and Health; and Industrial Services.  
The Tox Free acquisition included subsidiary Daniels Health, allowing Cleanaway to expand from its traditional hydrocarbon and hazardous chemical collections into healthcare waste. The Industrial Services Division sets the company apart from rivals with its cleaning operations and response capability to emergency situations for industrial customers, all adhering to environmental OHS (Occupational Health and Safety) requirements.
The company’s Full Year 2017 Financial Results showed a robust 62% profit increase, with the trend continuing for the Half Year 2018 Results, where NPAT increased 25.8%.  Cleanaway management expects the Tox Free acquisition to add 25% to earnings per share by 2021.  Lendlease Group (LLC) looks more like a GARP (Growth at a Reasonable Price) than a traditional growth stock due to its current valuation measures.  GARP is an investing approach popularised by US investor Peter Lynch.  GARP is a hybrid philosophy combining the low valuation ratios favored by value investors with high growth outlooks favored by growth investors.  LLC has a current P/E of 15.85, slightly above the average sector P/E of the sector at 15.62, along with a P/EG (Price to Earnings Growth Ratio) of 0.73.  The company’s Forward P/E is 14.2.
The company operates globally, with regional head offices in New York, London, and Singapore.  The company describes itself as offering “property and infrastructure solutions.”  What Lendlease does is broad in scope, from designing and constructing property and infrastructure assets, to owning and co-investing and funding them.
The company’s project list is massive, with residential and commercial and retirement living developments.  Investors overly concerned about the property market here in Australia should know Lendlease has road and rail projects in its pipeline as well.
For those who draw comfort from expert analyst opinion, US investment bank Goldman Sachs recently added LLC to its coveted conviction buy list, raising its price target to $25.20. This announcement was preceded by Morgan Stanly raising its target price to $23.05, stating the company is “well-positioned to deliver low risk growth and improving returns.”
The company has reported revenue and profit increases in each of the last three Fiscal Years, with revenues doubling between FY 2016 and FY 2017 and NPAT increases of 12% and 9%.  The company’s share price has been a solid performer for the past ten years, slowly recovering from the drastic impact of the GFC.

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