Stock market still reasonably priced despite rally

Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange. Stocks remain reasonable priced despite this year's rally.
(Mary Altaffer / AP)

The Dow Jones industrial average is on a tear with the rest of the stock market, but valuations on stock prices are still reasonable.

In a new report, research firm S&P; Capital IQ argues that stocks are still fairly valued even though share prices lately have surged far faster than underlying corporate earnings.

“Market valuations are appealing but not compelling,” Sam Stovall, the firm’s chief equity strategist, concludes in the report.


That’s welcome news Tuesday, as the Dow Jones industrial average has jumped past 15,000 in early trading, part of a powerful rally that has sent stocks nearly straight up over most of the last six months.

Judged by operating earnings, the Standard & Poor’s 500 index opened the week roughly 11% below its average 12-month price-earnings ratio since 2000, according to Stovall. If the index were fully priced, it would be trading at roughly 1820, the report said, rather than the current 1621.

The story is similar based on other P/E measures, including trailing earnings, according to the report.

“Surely, the market has gotten ahead of itself, many say, and is ripe for correction due to overvaluation,” Stovall wrote. “We, however, think that while valuations are no longer as compelling as they were just a year ago, they remain appealing.”


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