TPG Axon's Singh In Rare Interview Talks His Favorite Japanese Stocks

Dinakar Singh, TPG-Axon Capital founder & CEO, reveals his top stock picks for the year. Things aren’t that cheap anymore but Japan is the one place in the world where many companies have low margins, says Singh.


look, i think for us, we want to make money by picking stocks but we look around the world and try and think through where we think things are unusually cheap and where they’re expensive. if you look at the u.s. and japan, which is a market we talked about last year as being one of our favorites, things aren’t that cheap anymore. almost every good stock is 15 and 20 times earnings. if i have to make money i have to find a place where the e will change or the p/e will get rerated a lot. something meanleful has to change. japan, we still love because the market isn’t cheap anymore. but it’s one place in the world where many companys have low margins. you can find companies like hitachi where margins could double over the next few years. you can’t find that in the u.s. anymore. ha — hitachi is in the middle of their cycle. macy’s, the department stores aren’t a category, meaning people hate department stores. they’ve traded at low multiples. they look at the aggregate numbers and say department stores are losing share. what’s that missing is there are two good ones and two bad ones. they’re losing share in part to macy’s and companies like dillards. macy’s, for example, trades, we think it’s 11 times earnings. every other retailer of any substance trades 13 to 20 times earnings. macy’s is doing better than the gap, better than limited. better-looking ceo. they are crushing it in terms of cash. they’ll buy back half their market cap. this stock creates 11 times earnings. huge discounts to macy’s, gap, limited, you name it. you can see the stock be up 40% over the next year. hospitals which i think another topic of the morning. that’s a part of the health care you like. we think hospitals are the biggest winner for obamacare. people have been uncertainty about health care programs, they’ve basically held off doing things. people getting procedures? yes. you’ve seen shockingly bad admissions in hospitals the last four or five months, partly random, flu season and things like that. partly because people don’t know what’s happening to their health care programs. community health is turning 11, 12 times earnings. if there’s more insurance money for people to go and pay their hospital. no one will check anything. hospitals will clean up. i think for us, that’s one of the mull plier, 10, 11 times earnings. energy sector, here to a case where you can buy a company for 6, 7 times cash flow, we think ebitda will double over the next five years.