On the surface, it's not that exciting to produce sweeteners,
starches and corn oil.
Where it gets exciting is if you're an income investor looking
for steadiness and growth potential.
In that case you might get quite excited about that industry
and one of its highly rated companies,Ingredion (
Westchester, Ill.-based Ingredion, formerly known as Corn
Products International, sports a three-year EPS Stability Factor
of 8. That's near the steadiest-possible grade of 0 and far from
the wildest-possible grade of 99.
The company -- whose products range from high fructose corn
syrup to starches used by a variety of sectors -- pays a
quarterly dividend of 26 cents a share. That provides an
annualized yield of about 1.6%.
The company boosted its payout in September from 20 cents a
share. That was its third dividend increase in 18 months.
Ingredion has a diversified customer base, helping to explain
its steadiness. It converts corn into products used by more than
60 industries, as a Dec. 7 article in IBD's New America section
noted. You can find the company's ingredients in frozen dinners,
beer, cosmetics and IV solutions.
Another positive is that Ingredion has been claiming a spot in
recent weeks in the IBD 50, a list of leading growth stocks. The
company has increased EPS by 21% and 27% in the last two
quarters, though revenue has edged up just 3% in those
Ingredion has said it's targeting EPS growth of 10% to 12%
over the long term.
"Earnings performance should be driven by a combination of
organic sales growth of 3% to 4%, cost efficiencies and mix
improvement," CFO Cheryl K. Beebe said last month in a news
release issued in conjunction with the company's analysts
In terms of chart action, Ingredion remains in a buying range
after topping a 64.18 buy point from a three-weeks-tight
structure, a follow-on pattern.
The stock broke out from an early-stage base in September,
following it up in October with a rally off its 10-week moving