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Economics

7 A-Rated Energy Stocks to Buy Before Winter Strikes

The fact that the Federal Reserve is contemplating shifting its easy money policies as early as mid-November shows that inflation isn’t as transitory…

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This article was originally published by Investor Place

The fact that the Federal Reserve is contemplating shifting its easy money policies as early as mid-November shows that inflation isn’t as transitory as thought a couple months ago. And that’s great news for energy stocks.

When inflation rises, the dollar weakens as interest rates rise. That means it takes more dollars to buy commodities like oil, for example. Certainly, the supply chain problems have something to do with this but it’s also a lack of supply that started during the pandemic last year.

Now, demand bounces back — until the delta variant slowed things down again — but it’s tough to ramp up production in a quarter or two. It’s certainly a unique situation.

But that doesn’t mean you have to wait until things get better before stepping into the market. Energy stocks like the ones below can be a great addition now, as we see that energy prices will remain high for some time to come. Another noteworthy aspect of these stocks is that each has an A-rating in my Portfolio Grader.

  • Continental Resources (NYSE:CLR)
  • ConocoPhillips (NYSE:COP)
  • Diamondback Energy (NASDAQ:FANG)
  • Marathon Oil (NYSE:MRO)
  • HollyFrontier (NYSE:HFC)
  • ONEOK (NYSE:OKE)
  • Royal Dutch Shell (NYSE:RDS.A, NYSE:RDS.B)

Energy Stocks to Buy: Continental Resources (CLR)

Source: Maksym Vynohradov / Shutterstock.com

Exploration and production (E&P) companies are also called upstream energy companies. That means they’re the ones finding oil and natural gas and then selling it downstream.

CLR is an E&P player that primarily works out of the Bakken Shale in North Dakota and Montana. Its energy leans more toward oil than natural gas but it produces both. And both are in great demand, especially in global markets.

Since extraction costs are more or less fixed for E&P companies, the higher the price of oil and gas means the bigger the margins. And that’s precisely why CLR stock is up 203% year-to-date. But even after that run, its current price-to-earnings ratio is 48x. That’s a little high, but there’s a good chance earnings will be rolling in to justify it.

ConocoPhillips (COP)

a sign in front of the Conoco Philips office buildingSource: JHVEPhoto / Shutterstock.com

COP is a global E&P player with a nearly $100 billion market cap that also operates some midstream (pipelines, transportation) services to move production to demand markets.

This is a good time for COP since natural gas is in high demand in Europe and Japan, and oil is in demand in China. With a global E&P and distribution operation, COP can supply them with what they need efficiently. And COP can realize expanding profit margins.

The stock has risen 95% YTD and is richly valued. But this is the way the energy markets work — big swings in either direction — and we’re in an multi-year uptrend now. Earnings will catch up.

COP also still has a 2.5% dividend, which isn’t beating inflation, but it’s a nice kicker.

Energy Stocks to Buy: Diamondback Energy (FANG)

Image of an oil filed at the Permian Basin.Source: FreezeFrames / Shutterstock.com

FANG is a land-based U.S. E&P that has operations primarily in the Permian Basin, an energy-rich area in West Texas and Southeast New Mexico. The company has numerous properties in the basin and uses unconventional drilling methods — fracking and horizontal drilling — to access the reserves.

About 60% of its production is oil, another 20 is natural gas and the remaining 20% in natural gas liquids (NGLs). All these products are in high demand.

The trouble is, FANG has been struggling to keep its earnings in positive territory recently unlike other energy stocks. This shouldn’t be a problem moving forward, now that global energy demand has kicked into gear.

FANG stock has gained almost 130% YTD and has a 1.6% dividend. There’s still plenty of upside left.

Marathon Oil (MRO)

Marathon Oil (MRO) gas station carport on sunny day with blue sky backgroundSource: Jonathan Weiss/shutterstock.com

Like other E&P plays, earnings haven’t been great for MRO as we slowly emerge from the pandemic and the delta variant wave. But now we’re in recovery mode and demand it rising in all sectors, including energy stocks.

That’s great news for MRO, which has been drilling for black gold since 1887. And with that kind of legacy, today’s markets aren’t anything new to this company. It has seen a few things just as crazy since Grover Cleveland was president.

MRO stock is up 146% YTD and has a sub-1% dividend. But we’re not concerned about dividends now. This is about energy demand growth, and MRO will be a beneficiary.

Energy Stocks to Buy: HollyFrontier (HFC)

Pipelines in the desertSource: bht2000 / Shutterstock.com

Once you get the black stuff out of the ground and ship it along a pipeline, the business of turning it into viable products begins at the refinery. And that’s where HFC comes in. It operates about a half dozen oil refineries and three asphalt terminals.

In energy parlance, refineries are part of downstream operations, along with distribution and marketing to retailers and wholesalers. This is a key part of the process since getting the oil out of the ground doesn’t mean much if it can’t be refined in a timely manner.

HFC is one of the smaller refiners in the U.S. — it has a $6 billion market cap — which means its gains will amplify in current markets. The stock is up 43% YTD and still trades at a decent current P/E around 31x.

ONEOK (OKE)

Image of a gas burner with a blue flameSource: Shutterstock

Founded in 1906 as the Oklahoma Natural Gas Company, OKE is a leading natural gas and NGL marketer in the U.S. NGLs are derivatives found in raw natural gas that are then used in various industrial processes or for fuel.

The most common are ethane (plastic bags, anti-freeze), propane (fuel), butane (synthetic rubber, lighter fuel), isobutane (refrigerant, aerosols), pentane (gasoline) and pentanes plus (gasoline, ethanol).

The U.S. is like the Saudi Arabia of natural gas supplies. Even as prices have risen domestically, overseas prices are triple or are higher than they are here, which makes for great export opportunities.

This is a very good time for natural gas companies regardless of where they sit in the supply chain. And OKE is a sure beneficiary of the current demand but also a growing transition to cleaner burning (more efficient) fuels, which also boosts its interest with ESG investors.

OKE stock is up 75% YTD yet it only has a current P/E of 22x and offers an inflation-pacing 5.8% dividend.

Energy Stocks to Buy: Royal Dutch Shell (RDS.A)

The Royal Dutch Shell (RDS.A, RDS.B) logo on a gas station in Iceland.Source: JuliusKielaitis / Shutterstock.com

As measured by revenue, Shell is among the largest companies in the world. That’s some rarified air. But if you can recall a few years ago, when energy prices were headed in the opposite direction as they are today, RDS.A wasn’t very attractive. It had cut its dividend and was tightening operations, shuttering wells … the whole nine yards.

But in good times, the big integrated oil companies are like the desert blooming after a rain. Big energy stocks can grow their margins upstream, midstream and downstream. And just a little growth in margins is huge when you’re talking about the scale of RDS.A.

Plus, Shell is actively looking to establish itself in renewable and alternative energy markets as well. For example, it can convert some of its natural gas into “blue” hydrogen and then begin to use its filling station networks as distribution points.

The stock has risen 35% YTD and it has a P/E of 34x. It also has a 2.6% dividend that’s unspectacular but dependable.

On the date of publication, Louis Navellier has a position in COP in this article. Louis Navellier did not have (either directly or indirectly) any other positions in the securities mentioned in this article. The InvestorPlace Research Staff member primarily responsible for this article did not hold (either directly or indirectly) any positions in the securities mentioned in this article.

The opinions expressed in this article are those of the writer, subject to the InvestorPlace.com Publishing Guidelines.

Louis Navellier, who has been called “one of the most important money managers of our time,” has broken the silence in this shocking “tell all” video… exposing one of the most shocking events in our country’s history… and the one move every American needs to make today.

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Economics

Waning Term Premiums And The Riddle Of Surging Inflation

Waning Term Premiums And The Riddle Of Surging Inflation

By Ven Ram, Bloomberg macro commentator and reporter

If you asked your bank manager…

Waning Term Premiums And The Riddle Of Surging Inflation

By Ven Ram, Bloomberg macro commentator and reporter

If you asked your bank manager for a loan, the rate you will be offered will vary proportionally with not only how much you borrow, but also how long you borrow for. That, of course, is a no-brainer since the longer the bank is willing to lend to an individual, the greater the risk of something going wrong. Mainly, they encompass credit and inflation risks, and in the case of institutional investments, liquidity as well.

Yet, in the market for Treasuries and several other major developed markets, investors have recently become indifferent to the risk surrounding the longevity of their loans to governments. In other words, they are essentially saying, there is no more inflation risk in lending to Uncle Sam over, say, 10 years than there is when lending for a far shorter period. That is a massive irony against a backdrop where inflation is Le probleme du jour.

Shrinking term premiums is one major reason why Treasury long-dated yields have fallen after the brisk first quarter that, back then, resembled a juggernaut on the move. (The issue isn’t peculiar to the U.S. by any stretch: investors are willing to loan the U.K. for a 30-year period for well less than 1%, but will readily settle for even less — at around 50 basis points — if the Chancellor of the Exchequer will agree to keep the sum in his state’s coffers for 50 years, thank you. Sure, there are reasons such as demand for ultra-long debt from pension funds, but that’s a discussion for another day.)

Why is it that investors couldn’t seem to care less about earning a decent term premium?

A combination of liquidity, declining natural rates of interest and unbridled expansion of balance sheets — and that’s not an exhaustive list — have got us to where we are now. Getting out of it, though, isn’t going to be easy. Getting into quicksand takes a trice, but last I checked no one had found a way yet to come out of it in one swift ascent.

Tyler Durden
Thu, 12/09/2021 – 08:20

Author: Tyler Durden

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Economics

3 Growth Stocks to Buy Before The End of the Year

Recently, the market has experienced increased volatility, with a major factor being the Federal Reserve’s hawkish pivot. The Fed seems to be more focused…

Recently, the market has experienced increased volatility, with a major factor being the Federal Reserve’s hawkish pivot. The Fed seems to be more focused on combating inflation, and the market is now expecting at least two rate hikes next year. As a result, the yield on the two-year Treasury Note has moved up from 0.15% in June to 0.65%. Rising short-term rates are a headwind for growth stocks, which perform their best in environments where rates are declining. 

So, it’s not surprising that growth stocks led the market to the downside last week. A good example is the ARK Innovation ETF (NYSEARCA:ARKK) which is down more than 19% in just the past month. In contrast, the S&P 500 and Nasdaq are down 0.64% and 2.25%, respectively. 

However, I believe this pullback in growth stocks offers investors an opportunity.  The rise in short-term rates may soon be over, as forward-looking inflation measures are moderating at a rapid pace. Further, after the recent steep pullback, many growth stocks have reached more attractive valuation levels. Therefore, investors should consider buying the dip in these three top growth stocks:

Growth Stocks to Buy: Alphabet (GOOGL)

A photo of someone typing on a computer whose browser is open to Alphabet's Google search page.Source: Castleski / Shutterstock.com

Alphabet recently became the third-most-valuable company in the world with a market capitalization of over $1.9 trillion. The company’s primary source of revenue and income remains Search which is very profitable and maintains a dominant market share. Over the years, GOOGL has expanded into other areas like Google Cloud, Android, Chrome, Google Docs, YouTube, and its venture bets like autonomous driving venture Waymo. 

GOOGL stock was initially an underperformer during the pandemic as ad spending decreased. Further, ads from travel companies were put on hold, and those comprise a meaningful chunk of revenue. However, ad rates and ad spending are now well above pre-pandemic levels as the economy reopens and gradually normalizes. 

The company’s momentum is evident in its results for Q3. Revenue increased by 41% to $65.1 billion, while operating income increased by 32% to $21 billion. For the full year, analysts project EPS growth of 85% and 39% revenue growth. Not surprisingly, GOOGL’s stock is up more than 60% year to date and the company has shown impressive relative strength during this period of market stress. 

GOOGL’s POWR Ratings reflect this promising outlook. The stock has an overall B rating, which equates to a “Buy” in our proprietary rating system. B-rated stocks have posted an average annual performance of 19.7% which compares favorably to the S&P 500’s annual return of 7.1%. To see more information about GOOGL’s POWR Ratings, click here.

Workday (WDAY)

A close-up view of a Workday (WDAY) sign in Pleasanton, California.Source: Sundry Photography / Shutterstock.com

Workday provides enterprise cloud applications with offerings that include financial management applications, cloud spending management solutions, and Workday applications for planning. YTD, WDAY’s stock is up 17%, and that number surges to almost 500% since its IPO in 2013.

Cloud and enterprise software stocks have been among the best performers of the last decade. It’s not surprising when considering that companies are increasing spending on their IT systems, software and cloud systems at a strong rate which is expected to continue over the next decade.

For investors, these companies are fantastic, because they tend to have high margins and recurring revenue. Once companies choose a software or cloud provider, they are unlikely to change often given the cost and complexity of changing systems. Further, once companies have people on their platforms, they are able to unlock more opportunities for monetization. 

Despite the stock’s recent underperformance, the business continues to gain momentum. Its last earnings report showed a 20% increase in revenue to $1.3 billion with over 90% of revenue coming from recurring subscriptions. It also made a new milestone in terms of EPS going from a loss of 10 cents per share last year to a profit of 17 cents per share this year’s Q3.

WDAY has an overall B rating, which equates to a “Buy” in our POWR Rating system. The POWR Ratings also evaluate stocks by various components to give more insight. In terms of its component grades, the stock has an A grade for Growth and a B grade for Sentiment and Quality. Click here to see the complete POWR Ratings for WDAY. 

Growth Stocks to Buy: Expedia (EXPE)

building facade with expedia (EXPE) group logoSource: VDB Photos / Shutterstock.com

Expedia is an online travel company that operates through multiple segments. Some of its most well-known brands include Expedia, Vrbo, Hotels.com, Orbitz, Travelocity and Wotif. In addition, it offers a range of travel and non-travel verticals, including corporate travel management, airlines, travel agents, online retailers, and financial institutions.

EXPE’s business took a big hit during the pandemic for obvious reasons. However, travel volumes are increasing and during the Thanksgiving holiday were at 90% of 2019 levels. It’s very possible that the recent rise in coronavirus cases and the emergence of the omicron strain could have a short-term impact. However, in the longer-term, vaccination rates and effective therapeutics are signs that the pandemic is close to an end.

The company’s recent earnings report also confirms the recovery in travel. The company topped expectations with revenue increasing by 97% to $3 billion. In total, it had $553 million in net income, a big turnaround from last year’s $31 million loss.  For Q4, analysts are projecting $2.3 billion, a 148%increase and a big jump in EPS to $6.89 per share.

EXPE’s strong fundamentals are reflected in its POWR Ratings. The stock has an overall C rating, which equates to a “Neutral” rating in our proprietary rating system. The POWR Ratings are calculated by considering 118 distinct factors, with each factor weighted to an optimal degree. 

EXPE has a B grade for Growth and Quality which isn’t surprising considering its Q3 results and status as one of the top online travel companies. To see EXPE’s complete POWR Ratings, click here.

On the date of publication, Jaimini Desai did not have (either directly or indirectly) positions in any of the securities mentioned in this article. The opinions expressed in this article are those of the writer, subject to the InvestorPlace.com Publishing Guidelines.

Jaimini Desai has been a financial writer and reporter for nearly a decade. He has helped countless investors take profitable rides on some of the hottest growth trends. His previous experience includes writing for Investopedia, Seeking Alpha, and MT Newswires. He is the Chief Growth Strategist for StockNews.com and the editor of the POWR Growth and POWR Stocks Under $10 newsletters.

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Author: Jaimini Desai

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Economics

US Economy Remains On Track For Strong Rebound in Q4

With the end of the year in sight, the US economy continues to show signs of a sharp pickup in growth in the fourth quarter, based on several nowcasts….

With the end of the year in sight, the US economy continues to show signs of a sharp pickup in growth in the fourth quarter, based on several nowcasts.

The US Bureau of Economic Analysis is expected to report in late-January that output rose 5.4% (annualized real rate) in Q4, via the median of several nowcasts compiled by CapitalSpectator.com. The estimate marks a dramatic upside reversal from the slowdown in Q3 that cut growth to a modest 2.1%.

Although roughly a third of the fourth quarter’s economic data has not yet been published, the available numbers to date suggest that the final quarter of 2021 will deliver upbeat news for the US. The fact that recent nowcast revisions have been relatively steady at the 5%-plus level strengthens the outlook that output has accelerated. Today’s revised median 5.6% nowcast is up from 5.0% in the Nov. 16 update.

Recent survey data aligns with the firmer expectations for Q4 economic activity. “The US economy continues to run hot,” observed Chris Williamson, chief business economist at IHS Markit, on Nov. 23, citing the consultancy’s US Composite Output Index, a GDP proxy. “Despite a slower rate of expansion of business activity in November, growth remains above the survey’s long-run pre-pandemic average as companies continue to focus on boosting capacity to meet rising demand.”

Supply-chain and worker-shortage issues continue to create headwinds, but a rebound in economic activity overall appears increasingly likely when the government publishes its initial Q4 GDP estimate next month.

The main question is whether the rebound proves fleeting? Looking ahead to 2022 suggests that economic activity could slow in the new year due to potential blowback from the omicron variant of the coronavirus, higher inflation and other factors.

Goldman Sachs, an investment bank, recently cut its forecast for US growth in the new year. “While many questions remain unanswered, we now think a moderate downside scenario where the virus spreads more quickly but immunity against severe disease is only slightly weakened is most likely,” says Joseph Briggs, an economist at the firm.

This week’s update of the UCLA Anderson Forecast has also trimmed the outlook for early next year, revising its Q1 2022 growth estimate down substantially to a 2.6% gain from the 4.2% predicted in September. The key assumption: the omicron variant “might be disruptive, while acknowledging that its effects cannot be predicted.”

Perhaps, but the good news is that economic momentum looks set to deliver a strong tailwind going into 2022.  


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Author: James Picerno

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