Leucadia National Corp. (NYSE:LUK)

CAPS Rating: 4 out of 5

A diversified holding company engaged in a variety of businesses, including manufacturing, real estate activities, medical product development, winery operations and residual banking and lending activities that are in run-off.

Recs

4
Player Avatar fladoy (95.84) Submitted: 2/20/2009 11:14:04 AM : Underperform Start Price: $13.39 LUK Score: +87.76

Leucadia National Corp engages in manufacturing, telecommunications, property management and services, gaming entertainment, real estate activities, medical product development, and winery operations. Based on the description, this is just the type of company you would want to hold in a downturn. Leucadia has exposure to everything, which most people argue makes them diversified. The problem with that assumption is that most people assume diversified is good. That is an argument for another day, but one aspect about this company that is not open to argument is their enormous debt balance and decreasing cash flows. Guess what, if you can't pay the bills you have to sell assets. If you have to sell assets are you diversified anymore.

Member Avatar FoolTheRest (99.89) Submitted: 3/26/2010 8:40:39 PM
Recs: 3

I would argue (or agree with you, depending on how you see it) that for a company, diversification is usually bad. Very few do it well. Off the top of my head, the only ones I can think of are BRK, MKL, LUK, and possibly MVC, if they are being transparent about holdings beyond our view. In fact, when I thought about an investment in LUK, there were two issues holding me back; you hit them both. Debt and cash flow can swallow a company, especially a small one. I think management is especially talented, so as a bull on LUK, I hope you are wrong.

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