Here's what we learned in the past week on our regular hunt for the best stocks to buy now: investors have more access to biotech's best investments, earnings reports are clearly separating winners from losers, and cybersecurity is looking even more profitable than before.
First, let's start with earnings...
Indeed, earnings reports were big market drivers this week, with tech leading the way.
Over the last five days, we saw earnings from 157 companies, including eight Dow components and a slew of high profile firms including Apple Inc. (Nasdaq: AAPL), Facebook Inc. (Nasdaq: FB) and Amazon.com Inc. (Nasdaq: AMZN).
To date, more than 45% of S&P 500 companies have reported results for this quarter. Some 68% of firms have beaten earnings expectations and 56% have topped revenue forecasts, according to Thomson Reuters.
If all companies still on tap to report earnings simply come in line with projections, earnings will be up 4.1% from the same quarter a year ago. Moreover, since companies have delivered strong forward guidance, growth should continue into 2014.
That sets the stage for some hefty year-over-year gains for the Dow, the S&P and the Nasdaq.
All three indexes are up nearly 18% year-to-date, presenting some huge profit plays if you know the right stocks to buy.This Week's Best Stocks to Buy
Here at Money Morning, we aim to keep you informed on the best stocks to buy - and sell - as market news unfolds. Based on what happened this week, check out these developing investment opportunities:
- Monday we told you why cybersecurity was one of the best investments to make now (and gave you our fave picks). Sure enough, on Tuesday, there was a big deal in the sector when Cisco Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO) bought Sourcefire Inc. (Nasdaq: FIRE) for $76 a share, a near 29% premium, in a $2.7 billion deal. FIRE investors saw the stock jump 30%. M&A activity in the industry is just heating up with plenty more deals likely in this winning space. You can find the full analysis on cybersecurity's investment opportunities here.
- Growth at a reasonable price is a good investment strategy. Yet growth at a reasonable price where earnings have the potential to explode is an even better plan, and we found two stocks to buy that fit that strategy: C&J Energy Services Inc (Nasdaq: CJES), a fracking play, and Hudson Technologies Inc. (Nasdaq: HDSN) a dominant player in the metals, refrigerant and system services sector. Fracking is changing the whole landscape of the booming natural gas industry and is leading the U.S. to energy independence. And, Hudson's niche capabilities of working with a variety of high performance metals, like titanium, aluminum and steel, make it a winning play for investors. Get the full look at these stocks: Two Cheap Growth Stocks to Buy Now.
- Wednesday we featured a piece on why it's a good time to look at gold miners. Since peaking in August 2011, gold prices have tumbled, down nearly 19% over the last 12 months alone. Additionally, the yellow metal has dragged gold mining stocks lower (down 50% since the start of the year). Money Morning Chief Investment Strategist Keith Fitz-Gerald said, "I could very easily make the argument that gold miners are unloved, undervalued and probably the worst investment of the year. But, we know from history that's precisely the best time to buy. History shows you want to but when there's blood in the streets. Gold mining stocks are no exception." Over the last 30 days, gold prices have bounced better than 9%. That's good news for miners like the one we featured, which is up about 14.5% in the past month. Find out more with Why Gold Mining Stocks are a Buy Now
- Mid-week investors got a look at Facebook stock (Nasdaq: FB). Ahead of the social networking giant's Q2 earnings release, we told readers it was all about mobile. And, Facebook's report and conference call revealed mobile was, in fact, the big driver in the quarter. Here at Money Morning, we still aren't buying the story or the stock, as we explained in the follow-up. We also warned the run-up (partly thanks to a short squeeze) would likely be followed by some profit taking, as was the case. Read more at:
- Thursday we scoured tech to find the best stocks to buy in the sector. Latest earnings results from industry behemoths were a mixed bag, and we dug deep within the numbers to weed out those with promising prospects. Money Morning Defense and Technology Specialist Michael A. Robinson recommends investors keep a close eye on hard disc and flash memory drive maker SanDisk Corp. (Nasdaq: SNDK). "SandDisk gives us a look at three key sectors in one stock," Robinson said, noting the company's products are used in PCs, mobile and cloud computing. Here's the full story: Ignore Earnings Noise to Find the Best Tech Stocks to Buy Now.
- Another one of our favorite tech stocks to buy is part of Robinson's favorite investment ideas right now. It's IvenSense Inc. (NYSE: INVN), a fast growing Silicon Valley company that's a leading provider of the motion sensing chips that makes location-based service technology possible. This company puts "a heck of a lot of power in the palm of your hand," and stands to provide meaningful revenue. No GPS needed to read the rest of the story: After Saving My Life, This Technology Will Save Your Retirement."
- Unquestionably, biotech has been a standout this year. This pioneering industry continues to wow investors on its mission to heal the world. Money Morning found a couple of small cap companies destined to become big players in the sector. Organovo Holding (NYSE: ONVO) is one of Robinson's favorites. This groundbreaking company develops 3D bio printing technology that allows for the creation of functional human tissues on demand. This innovation will enable doctors to create organs and cosmetic appendages for patients. Another company to keep tabs on is Cellceutix Corp. (CTIX.OB), in the clinical stage for a treatment for various forms of cancer and in controlling cell mutations. And now these investments have become easier for you to profit from - here's why: The Best Biotech Stocks For 2013 Are Now Within Your Reach.
- Even though consumer spending has slipped, strong retailers are benefiting from picky shoppers. That's why we found three stocks in the sector that are posting healthy sales and share-price gains. One is a company catering to luxury brands, one is an apparel company benefiting from its subsidiaries, and the third is firm that provides vehicle parts, pairs and warranties in the robust auto industry. Find out why we love these retailers here: Three Retail Stocks to Buy Now with "Sizzling" Sales in 2013
These are just a handful of the ways to make money we've uncovered this week. One of the most exciting stories you won't hear anywhere else is the real deal with China's currency, the yuan. Here's what no one else understands about the yuan, and how the truth can make you money: Most Everything You've Heard about China's Currency is Dead Wrong (and that Means Money for Us)Tags: best investment now, best investments this week, best stocks to buy, best stocks to buy now, Best stocks to invest in now, best stocks to invest in this week, stocks to buy, stocks to buy 2013, Stocks to buy now, stocks to buy today, What stocks to invest in now
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