Smart investors always conduct intensive research before deciding on a particular stock or portfolio. They never follow the herd and don't believe in the rule that risky stocks can only generate lucrative returns.
With thorough research we have generated a strategy that claims that less-risky securities or portfolios can also generate handsome returns.
Meaning of Beta
Beta measures the volatility or risks to a security relative to the market (we are considering the S&P 500 here). That is, beta measures the extent to which the price of a stock moves with respect to the market.
If the beta is equal to 1 it means that the stock is as volatile as the market. So, a stock is relatively more volatile if it has beta greater than 1 and less volatile if beta is less than 1.
For example, if the beta is 1.8 then the stock will witness 80% more movement than the market. Hence, we can say that if the market goes up, the stock will outperform by 80%. Conversely, if the market plunges, the stock will lose much more value than the market.
Building a Low-Risk Portfolio
In order to find stocks with lower-than-market volatility, we added beta between 0 and 0.6 as our main criterion for screening. However, we need to keep in mind that low beta is not the only metric to be considered for choosing stocks in a volatile market. Hence to reach the winning strategy, we have considered a few additional criteria.
Percentage Change in Price in the last 4 Weeks: We considered those stocks that saw positive price movement over the last month.
Average 20 Day Volume greater than or equal to 50,000: A substantial trading volume ensures that the stocks are easily tradable.
Price greater than or equal to $5: They must all be trading at a minimum of $5 or higher.
Zacks Rank equal to 1: Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) stocks indicate that they will significantly outperform the broader U.S. equity market over the next one to three months.
Here are five of the 18 stocks that fit the bill:
Based in United Kingdom, Michael Kors Holdings Limited KORS is a global luxury lifestyle company. The company surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate in all the prior four quarters, the average positive earnings surprise being 35.7%. In fiscal 2019 and 2020, we expect the stock to post earnings growth of 10.8% and 6.4%, respectively.
lululemon athletica inc. LULU , based in Vancouver, Canada, is the provider of athletic apparel. The company managed to beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate in each of the prior four quarters, the average positive earnings surprise being 19.2%. The company will likely post earnings growth of 35.9% and 16.2% for fiscal 2018 and 2019, respectively.
Based in Philadelphia, PA, Urban Outfitters, Inc. URBN is a provider of fashion apparel. The company beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate in each of the prior four quarters. In fiscal 2018 and 2019, the firm will likely post earnings growth of 59.3% and 8.5%, respectively.
Headquartered in Norwood, MA, Blue Hills Bancorp, Inc. BHBK is basically a bank holding company. The firm has an average positive earnings surprise of 11.3% for the last four quarters. In 2018 and 2019, we expect the company to record earnings growth of 78.6% and 15%, respectively.
US Ecology, Inc. ECOL , headquartered in Boise, ID, provides environmental services in North America. The company surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate in three of the prior four quarters.
You can get the rest of the stocks on this list by signing up now for your 2-week free trial to the Research Wizard and start using this screen in your own trading. Further, you can also create your own strategies and test them first before taking the investment plunge.
The Research Wizard is a great place to begin. It's easy to use. Everything is in plain language. And it's very intuitive. Start your Research Wizard trial today. And the next time you read an economic report, open up the Research Wizard, plug your finds in, and see what gems come out.
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Disclosure: Officers, directors and/or employees of Zacks Investment Research may own or have sold short securities and/or hold long and/or short positions in options that are mentioned in this material. An affiliated investment advisory firm may own or have sold short securities and/or hold long and/or short positions in options that are mentioned in this material.
Disclosure: Performance information for Zacks' portfolios and strategies are available at: https://www.zacks.com/performance .
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Want the latest recommendations from Zacks Investment Research? Today, you can download 7 Best Stocks for the Next 30 Days. Click to get this free report Blue Hills Bancorp, Inc. (BHBK): Free Stock Analysis Report Urban Outfitters, Inc. (URBN): Free Stock Analysis Report lululemon athletica inc. (LULU): Free Stock Analysis Report Michael Kors Holdings Limited (KORS): Free Stock Analysis Report US Ecology, Inc. (ECOL): Free Stock Analysis Report To read this article on Zacks.com click here.