‘Very attractive’: Buy this automaker to play massive pent-up demand in U.S., fund manager says
There is huge demand for cars in both the U.S. and China — the world’s two largest autos markets — according to fund manager Steven Glass, who named one automaker to cash in. In the U.S. alone, the shortfall stands at five million vehicles, Glass, managing director and analyst at Pella Funds Management, told CNBC’s Street Signs Asia on Monday. “That’s pent-up demand for new vehicles in the U.S. alone, which we think we are going to start seeing next year as supply chains open up.” Meanwhile, China is also starting to see growth in the autos market once more, after years of decline, according to Glass. “China has just started to experience growth in its autos market. That market was in decline between 2018 and 2021, but now we have started seeing some growth again,” he added. How to play it His top pick to play the sector is German automaker BMW . Glass believes the company is likely to experience cyclical growth next year. It also has a “very well-managed” balance sheet and is trading at a price-to-earnings ratio of just 5.5 — a 20-year low. Taken together, this makes the stock look “very, very attractive,” he said BMW has long made clear its intention to challenge Tesla’s leadership in electric vehicles. The Bavarian automaker aims to have two million EVs on the roads by 2025 and estimates half of its car sales to comprise EVs by 2030. Earlier this month, the company announced plans to invest $1.7 billion in its U.S. operations to build EVs and batteries. Of this investment, $1 billion has been earmarked to prepare BMW’s existing U.S. manufacturing facility in South Carolina to produce EVs. The German automaker expects to produce at least six fully electric models in the U.S. by 2030. ? Going forward, [the facility] will also be a major driver for our electrification strategy, and we will produce at least six fully electric BMW X models here by 2030,” BMW Chairman Oliver Zipse said last month. The remaining $700 million will be used for the construction of a new high-voltage battery assembly center. The company has already announced four additional battery cell factories that will be built in Europe and China to meet its demand for next-generation battery cells. Shares in BMW are down 12.9% this year, outperforming Tesla, which has lost more than 40% of its market capitalization so far this year. The stock has an average potential upside of 20.6%, according to analyst estimates tracked by FactSet.