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Time to Catch Growth Fever? 5 Top Picks

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It seems like just yesterday when the markets were whistling past a graveyard, instead of cheering the New Year with the usual pomp and show. The S&P 500 sank 7.6% in the first 20 days of 2016, knocked down by factors like caving oil prices and chaos in the Chinese stock market.

But since then, the equity market has rebounded with its famed resilience, albeit with shaky steps, and gained almost 7% to date.

Nevertheless, investors are stillawash with doubts, and have little faith that these good times can keep rolling. They are busy fretting about Chinese growth concerns, contracting corporate earnings, and uncertainty over interest rates.

In fact, according to Bloomberg, investors are siphoning cash from stocks at just about the fastest rate in history. And with the S&P 500 actually losing over 3% over the past one year, it's not really uncalled for.

Yet, if history is anything to go by, the same skepticism on the part of investors offers a compelling case for the market to go up. Because once the market starts to turn around, the bears will be forced to buy. Also, theoretically, bull markets usually take their last breath amid extreme optimism, and well - look around, that's one thing nowhere to be found.

Hence, we believe that oftentimes, the best trades are initiated during wayward times like these. If we just stick to the script and focus on time-tested screens, we are likely to find fantastic stock ideas. And when it comes to the script, growth stocks have always told the most magnificent stories, haven't they?

But the question remains: how to single out the cream of the crop from the dime-a-dozen growth stocks that are all over investors' radar these days?

Here we present some of the best growth stocks in this market, which have also been seeing positive interest from analysts lately. These stocks hold the top Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), and hold Growth Style Scores of 'A' or 'B'. Our research shows that these Growth Style Scores, when combined with a top Zacks Rank, offer the best investment opportunities in the growth investing space.

Further, we have made sure that these stocks belong to top-performing industries, using our Zacks Industry Rank system. This way, we can ensure that our picks also stand to benefit from a bullish outlook for their respective industry.

5 Money Spinners

American Woodmark Corp. AMWD is a manufacturer and distributor of kitchen cabinets and vanities for the new home construction and remodeling segments in the U.S.

American Woodmark has a Growth Style Score of 'B', and its earnings are set to grow at an impressive rate of 70.2% this year. Furthermore, the company belongs to the Furniture industry, which is ranked #25 and lies in the top 9% of industries, per the Zacks Industry Ranking system.

Over the past month, analysts have become increasingly bullish on the company, with 2 upward estimate revisions for the company's 2016 earnings. This has led to a sharp spike in the Zacks Consensus Estimate for 2016, which now stands at $3.58, up nearly 7% from $3.36 a month ago.

Computer Programs & Systems Inc.CPSI provides healthcare information technology solutions for rural and community hospitals in the United States.

With a Growth Style Score of 'B', the company's bottom line is set to grow at an astounding rate of 113.7% this year. In addition, the company belongs to the Medical Information Systems industry, which is ranked #32 and lies in the top 12% of industries, according to the Zacks Industry Ranking system.

The stock has also been witnessing solid activity on the earnings estimate revision front as well. Analysts clearly see good things in the company's future, as the Zacks Consensus Estimate for 2016 earnings has trended sharply up over the past couple of months, from $2.33 to $3.46 per share, thanks to 10 upward estimate revisions.

Smith & Wesson Holding Corp.SWHC is one of the world's leading producers of quality handguns, law enforcement products, and firearm safety & security products.

Flaunting a Growth Style Score of 'A', this company's earnings are set to grow at a striking 66.7% in 2016. Moreover, the company belongs to the Leisure & recreation Products industry, which is ranked #25 and lies in the top 9% of industries, according to the Zacks Industry Ranking system.

Analysts have great expectations from the company this year and have been revising 2016 earnings estimates upward over the past month. Smith & Wesson has seen 3 positive revisions over the past 4 weeks, resulting in its 2016 estimate climbing from $1.40 to $1.70.

Insperity Inc. NSP provides an array of human resources and business solutions to enhance the performance of small and medium-sized businesses in the United States.

Possessing a Growth Style Score of 'A', the company's earnings are set to grow 53.8% year over year. Besides, the company belongs to the Staffing industry, which is ranked #25 and lies in the top 9% of industries, per the Zacks Industry Ranking system.

Moreover, analysts have become increasingly bullish on the company over the past month, with 2 upward estimate revisions for its 2016 earnings. This has led to a sharp spike in the Zacks Consensus Estimate for 2016, which now stands at $2.86, up from $2.35 a month ago.

Hawaiian Holdings Inc. HA is a holding company of Hawaiian Airlines, which is involved in transporting passengers as well as cargo.

With a Growth Style Score of 'B', the company's bottom line is set to grow at an astounding rate of 50.9% this year. In addition, the company belongs to the Transportation - Airline industry, which is ranked #15 and lies in the top 6% of industries, according to the Zacks Industry Ranking system.

The stock has also been witnessing solid activity on the earnings estimate revision front as well. Analysts clearly envision healthy earnings momentum for the company as the Zacks Consensus Estimate for 2016 has trended sharply up over the past couple of months, from $3.43 to $4.66 per share, thanks to 5 upward estimate revisions.

Catch the Wind

Don't let the market give you the blues. Times like these provide some of the best buying opportunities. Stick to the basics that worked in the past, with just a little fine-tuning to adapt to the times. Because as they say, the brave may not live forever, but the cautious do not live at all!

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 >>

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

HAWAIIAN HLDGS (HA): Free Stock Analysis Report

COMPUTER PRGRMS (CPSI): Free Stock Analysis Report

AMER WOODMARK (AMWD): Free Stock Analysis Report

SMITH & WESSON (SWHC): Free Stock Analysis Report

INSPERITY INC (NSP): Free Stock Analysis Report

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.


The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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