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Back-to-School Spending to Hit Record High: 4 Stocks in Focus

The coronavirus pandemic has changed the way students learnt so long. With schools closed across the country, remote learning seems to be the only viable option for both parents and students. However, that hasn’t stopped parents from stockpiling school goods. According to a recent survey by the National Retail Federation, this year’s spending on back-to-school supplies is going to hit a record high.

An increasing number of parents and students are stocking up on expensive technology like laptops, tablets, headphones and hardware. Understandably, the coronavirus pandemic has given a boost to the computer peripherals and networking software market along with apps that help in remote learning.

Parents Stockpile School Supplies

Parents still aren’t sure how the academic year is going to shape up and if attending school physically will at all be possible. So they are stockpiling computers and peripherals during the summer break. According to National Retail Federation’ annual survey, overall back-to-school spending is expected to hit a record high of $33.9 billion, beating the prior record of $30.3 billion in 2012. In 2019, back-to-school spending hit $26.2 billion.

Moreover, parents of kids in elementary through high school plan to spend an average $789.49 per family, beating the previous record of $696.70. Also, spending on college students is expected to be $1,059.20 per family, topping last year’s record of $976.78. Overall back-to-college spending is expected to reach $67.7 billion, breaking the 2018 record. 

Remote Learning Helping Tech Companies

Education technology was a growing market before the coronavirus pandemic hit, attracting more than $18.5 billion in investment in 2019. However, with ongoing disruption for students, the sector looks set to grow and innovate even further.

Schools across the world have started imparting classes online given that there are no immediate signs of coronavirus subsiding. In fact, experts and the World Health Organization predict that a second wave of coronavirus might hit countries that are rushing to reopen businesses and the economy.

From investing in computers, laptops and hardware to using video conferencing apps to enrolling students to schools with online campuses, parents are leaving no stone unturned to help their kids get quality education. This has seen many tech companies ramping up their efforts to provide online learning platforms to meet the spurt in demand for virtual education. Some are even tying up with schools in a bid to bring about an imperative change in the education system worldwide.  

Stocks to Watch

Distance learning could turn out to be more effective in coaching students and becoming the new normal if we explore it to optimum levels. Tech companies will be a key player in this change which has already started taking effect. Given this scenario, it is prudent to keep a close watch on these four stocks that are poised to grow.

Logitech International S.A. LOGI is a global leader in peripherals for personal computers and other digital platforms, which develops and markets innovative products in PC navigation, Internet communications, digital music, home-entertainment control, video security, interactive gaming and wireless devices.

The company’s expected earnings growth rate for the current year is more than 5.1%. Its shares have gained 47.1% in the past three months.  The company carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

Chegg Inc CHGG offers Chegg Services, comprising digital products and services such as Chegg Study, Chegg Writing and Chegg Tutors. These allow students to find human help on its learning platform through a network of live tutors.

The company’s expected earnings growth rate for the current year is 31.8%. Its shares have gained 11.8% in the past three months.  Chegg has a Zacks Rank #3.

Zoom Video Communications, Inc. ZM has been benefiting from the work-from-home and online learning wave following the coronavirus pandemic outbreak that forced more and more people to stay home. Zoom uses AI to schedule video meetings and for a host of other things such as organizing attendee details and transcripting details.

The company’s expected earnings growth rate for the current year is more than 100%. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for current-year earnings has improved 193% over the past 60 days.  The company sports a Zacks Rank #1.

Cisco Systems, Inc. CSCO has seven product categories: Switches aggregate and distribute information, collecting LANs, MANs and WANs filtering, processing and distributing it in the required volume and to the designated locations. They provide connectivity to end users, workstations, IP phones, access points and servers.

The company’s expected earnings growth rate for the current year is more than 1.6%. Its shares have gained 11.8% in the past three months.  Bright Horizonshasa Zacks Rank #2.

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