(Bloomberg) — The global tech selloff has dealt a fresh blow to Samsung Electronics Co., whose shares have sharply underperformed the broader South Korean equity market this year.
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Having lost more than 3% so far this month, the world’s largest memory chipmaker is now down 21% from a Jan. 11 peak, with foreign investors selling a net 18.24 trillion won ($15.3 billion) worth of its shares. Concerns about the impact of inflation are adding to worries about slow phone shipments and peaking DRAM chip prices.
While it’s still early days in October, the stock is staring at a fourth straight month of losses, which would be the longest such losing run since 2018.
The tone from analysts in Korea, where sell ratings are a rarity, still remains bullish. About 93% of 45 analysts covering the stock have a buy or equivalent rating on Samsung, up two percentage points since early August, according to Bloomberg-compiled data. No one has a sell rating on the stock. They expect Samsung to gain 40% over the next 12 months.
“The overall operating profit this year is beating the market consensus by a great extent so the continuing earnings surprise needs to be re-evaluated,” Hyundai Motor Securities Co. analyst Roh Geun-Chang said in a note. “Buy-and-hold strategy should remain effective as the quality of profit has begun to change,” he said.
Samsung is now trading at less than 11 times forward earnings, close to the five-year average, compared with smartphone rival Apple Inc.’s multiple of 25 times. Apple shares have gained more than 9% since Jan. 11.
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