Celanese’s YTD performance
Celanese (CE), a specialty chemical company, has outperformed its selected peers so far in 2018. YTD (year-to-date), Celanese has risen ~6%. Its peer Eastman Chemical (EMN) has risen 5% YTD. LyondellBasell (LYB) and Westlake Chemical (WLK) have fallen 7.4% and 21.2%, respectively, YTD. However, CE has underperformed the S&P 500 (SPY), which has gained 8.6% in the same period.
What’s driving Celanese?
Celanese posted impressive numbers in its second-quarter earnings. It reported revenues of $1.84 billion, which implies a 22% growth. It reported adjusted EPS of $2.90, an increase of 62% YoY (year-over-year). Celanese has been regularly increasing its product prices to cover the increase in raw materials. Better control of its operating expenses also helped CE’s adjusted EBIT (earnings before interest and taxes) margin at 26.6%, an increase of 500 basis points YoY.
CE has obtained four patents for Sunett sweetener. Its acquisitions and joint venture also had a positive impact on the stock. Its strong earnings performance is expected to continue, which could drive the stock up more.
Moving average and RSI
Celanese has positive returns YTD, but the stock has fallen from its all-time high of $118.10. As a result, the stock is trading marginally below its 100-day moving average of $113.60 as of September 18. Its RSI of 43 indicates that the stock is neither overbought nor oversold.
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