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The Glencore (LSE:GLEN) share price has soared in recent days as market confidence has surged. In fact the FTSE 100 share is the most-bought UK share among investors using Hargreaves Lansdown’s investment platform.
Glencore shares accounted for 2.22% of all buy orders in the week to 13 January. That puts it second on the list to only US electric car manufacturer Tesla.
Should I add the mining giant to my own shares portfolio today? Or would I be better off investing in other UK and US stocks?
One thing that strikes me is that Glencore’s share price still looks exceptionally cheap right now. At 558p per share it trades on a forward price-to-earnings (P/E) ratio of 5.8 times. This is well below the FTSE 100 average of around 13.5 times.
The company also boasts an enormous 9.7% dividend yield for 2023, soaring above the 3.7% average for FTSE index shares.
Cheap for a reason?
Some stocks are cheap for good reason, of course. And critics would argue that the low valuation of Glencore’s shares represents its uncertain outlook as the global economy splutters.
Ole Hansen, head of commodity strategy at Saxo Bank, says that raw material markets face “a challenging first quarter”. He cites uncertainty over “China’s messy exit from its long-held Covid-zero policy and what the recovery will look like” as the main cause for concern.
But Hansen adds that inflationary pressures, central bank rate hikes, and the ongoing war in Ukraine could also damage commodity prices. There’s a good chance (in my opinion at least) that these issues could drag on well into 2023, too.
Prepare for the supercycle
Having said that, I believe these risks could be reflected in Glencore’s current share price. And as a long-term investor I think now is a good time to buy the mining giant.
You see the world appears on the brink of a fresh commodities supercycle that could turbocharge investor returns. Demand for metals like copper and iron ore should soar on themes like rapid urbanisation and the green energy revolution. And prices should be helped further by huge underinvestment in supply over the past decade.
Economists at TD Asset Management comment that “we are in the early stages of a period that should see higher commodity prices and returns” and that current prices don’t look that expensive when adjusted for inflation.
There’s also the possibility that commodities markets could also significantly outperform expectations in the nearer term. Analysts at Goldman Sachs for example think commodities will be the best-performing asset class this year. They predict raw material values will rise 43% in 2023.
I believe Glencore shares could be a particularly great way for investors to capitalise on any supercycle, too. Its broad product portfolio means it has exposure to many fast-growing commodities sectors.
This wide wingspan also helps to reduce risk, as does its position as both raw materials trader and producer. With cash to spare I’ll be looking to add the mining giant to my own portfolio in 2023.
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