Unexpectedly strong consumer spending coupled with shrinking inflation has paved the way for a ‘Goldilocks’ U.S. economy moving into 2024 with upcoming Federal Reserve rate cuts set to add more prosperity on Wall Street.
The U.S. gross domestic product (GDP) increased by 3.3% in the fourth quarter of 2023, blitzing Wall Street expectations of 2%. Despite concerns over economic headwinds like historically high inflation rates and the Fed’s hawkish stance in continually hiking interest rates in a bid to soothe the economy, consumers have maintained a high level of spending.
While this may spark more concerns over the state of U.S. inflation, the available data suggests a more positive outlook for the economy. According to the OECD’s interim outlook, the organization predicted U.S. inflation to calm to just 2.2% in 2024 before falling further to 2% in 2025–representing the lowest rates in the G7.
This positive outlook is likely to be great news for Wall Street, and the return of investor confidence as rate cuts loom on the horizon means that we will see a more optimistic outlook for growth stocks over the year ahead. Most notably, the following stocks could provide the best springboard for growth as consumer spending strengthens:
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There aren’t many growth stocks out there that have experienced a brighter start to 2024 than eCommerce giant Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN).
The firm’s fourth quarter 2023 earnings showed that revenue had accelerated 14% to $170 billion, up from $149.2 billion in Q4 2022.
In addition to this, Amazon’s net income climbed to $10.6 billion, or $1 a share, from $278 million, or 3 cents a share, owing to strong holiday sales.
Crucially, Amazon Web Services (AWS) revenue grew 13% over the same period, representing a small increase on the 12% gains reported over the two prior quarters. Additionally, AWS’ operating profit grew by 38%.
The beauty of Amazon as a growth stock is that the company is never willing to rest on its laurels. Recently, Doug Herrington, CEO of Worldwide Amazon Stores, announced that the firm was targeting more comprehensive growth for same-day delivery services while aiming to ship more products from locations closer to customers, all while expanding operations on a global scale.
With AWS also playing a key role in the generative AI boom with the rollout of its large language models (LLMs), Amazon is set to be a force to be reckoned with in 2024.
Due to this, it’s unsurprising that stock analysts have been raising their price targets for Amazon’s stock.
“After several quarters of strong performance on the profitability front, we are raising our operating margin outlook by 160 basis points for 2024 and over the next several years,” said Dan Romanoff, Morningstar analyst.
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The inclusion of the embattled Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA) stock could be seen as a strange choice, but the long-term prospects for the electric vehicle (EV) specialists remain as bright as ever despite short-term volatility.
To suggest Tesla is undergoing some market volatility is an understatement. The stock fell by more than 20% in the first month of 2024 making it the worst performer on the S&P 500 index.
Problems began when Tesla fell under Wall Street estimates for Q4 2023 profit and revenue, leading to a swift investor sell-off.
The tumultuous leadership of Elon Musk has also reportedly added strain to the stock’s stability in the short term, so why should it be recognized as a leading growth stock in this list?
Here, it’s worth remembering that, despite recent downturns, Tesla’s stock has still grown more than 500% in the 2020s so far and has time and again bounced back from public setbacks to push investor portfolios higher.
Crucially, Tesla is a leader in a market that’s still emerging, and with Morningstar forecasts suggesting that the EV manufacturer will deliver over 5 million vehicles annually by 2030 while reducing its manufacturing costs on a per-vehicle basis, there’s every sign that the falling stock represents good value for a long-term hold among investors.
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Broadcom (NASDAQ:AVGO) was the star of the 2023 semiconductor boom that went under the radar. Having doubled its market capitalization in the past year, the stock offers diversified options to a range of clients without the cost and hype surrounding players like Nvidia (NASDAQ:NVDA).
With a GAAP-measured trailing-12-month price-to-earnings (P/E) ratio of 32.1x, Broadcom appears far more grounded than the likes of Nvidia, all while still displaying impressive levels of growth.
Broadcom’s Q4 2023 fiscal net revenue increased 4% year-over-year, and total revenue climbed 8% last year to a company-record $35.8 billion. According to Broadcom CEO Hock Tan, the positive quarterly results at the end of last year were down to “investments in accelerators and network connectivity for AI by hyperscalers.”
Having announced in September 2023 that Symantec, a division of Broadcom, will be partnering with Google Cloud to embed generative AI into the Symantec Security platform to offer greater protection against cyber attacks, there’s a lot more to come from this impressive semiconductor stock.
On the date of publication, Dmytro Spilka 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.
Dmytro is a finance and investing writer based in London. He is also the founder of Solvid, Pridicto and Coinprompter. His work has been published in Nasdaq, Kiplinger, FXStreet, Entrepreneur, VentureBeat and InvestmentWeek.
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