3 Stocks to Leave Out of Your Retirement Portfolio

The Fed announced its third consecutive 75-bps interest rate hike last week, which has caused the benchmark indices to plunge. The S&P 500 has lost 5.2% over the past week and 23.3% year-to-date. Moreover, Goldman Sachs slashed its 2022 year-end S&P 500 target to 3600, down 16.3% from 4300.

According to Chris Zaccarelli, Chief Investment Officer, Independent Advisor Alliance, Charlotte, NC, “The Fed is going to raise rates until inflation comes back down, and they will cause a recession in the process.”

Also, Steve Hanke, a professor of applied economics at Johns Hopkins University, said, “The probability of recession, I think it’s much higher than 50% — I think it’s about 80%.”

Given the uncertain economic outlook, fundamentally weak stocks Uber Technologies, Inc. (UBER), Workhorse Group Inc. (WKHS), and AppHarvest, Inc. (APPH) might be best avoided for your retirement portfolio. These stocks do not pay dividends, which is the key requirement for a stock to be added to a retirement portfolio.

Uber Technologies, Inc. (UBER)

UBER develops and operates proprietary technology applications in the United States, Canada, Latin America, Europe, the Middle East, Africa, and the Asia Pacific. The company operates through three segments: Mobility; Delivery; and Freight.

On September 25, 2022, Pomerantz LLP announced the filing of a class action lawsuit against UBER and some of its officers, alleging violations of federal securities laws. The suit is on behalf of a class of all persons and entities except Defendants that purchased or acquired UBER common stock between May 31, 2019, and July 8, 2022.

UBER’s revenue came in at $8.07 billion for the second quarter that ended June 30, 2022, up 105.5% year-over-year. However, its net loss came in at $2.60 billion compared to an income of $1.14 billion in the year-ago period. Moreover, its loss per share came in at $1.33, compared to an EPS of $0.58 in the prior-year period.

UBER’s EPS is expected to decline 367% year-over-year to negative $4.67 in 2022. Its EPS is estimated to remain negative in 2023. It missed EPS estimates in three of the four trailing quarters. Over the past year, the stock has lost 42.3% to close the last trading session at $26.89. Continue reading "3 Stocks to Leave Out of Your Retirement Portfolio"

3 Meme Stocks to Avoid

Meme stocks witness unusual rallies solely based on retail investors’ interest in them. Retail investors gather on social media platforms such as Reddit, Stocktwits, Twitter, and Facebook and bet on fundamentally weak stocks to trigger a short squeeze. As the skyrocketing rallies in these stocks have little to do with the fundamentals of the companies, they fail to sustain the high price levels they reach.

The meme stock mania, born during the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic, has recently returned after a pause for a few months, as evident from unusual rallies of certain fundamentally weak stocks. Since the surge in meme stocks is usually disconnected from the companies’ fundamentals, investors should shun them amid an uncertain market outlook.

The Consumer Price Index (CPI) for August rose 8.3% year-over-year. And the rampant inflation enhances the chances of the Federal Reserve maintaining its hawkish stance, pushing an already weakening economy into a recession. Thus, the stock market is expected to remain under pressure in the foreseeable future. This is a good enough reason to avoid the risk associated with meme stocks.

Hence, fundamentally weak meme stocks Robinhood Markets, Inc. (HOOD), AMC Entertainment Holdings, Inc. (AMC), and Bed Bath & Beyond Inc. (BBBY) are likely best avoided now.

Robinhood Markets, Inc. (HOOD)

HOOD operates a financial services platform in the United States. The company’s platform enables users to invest in stocks, exchange-traded funds (ETFs), gold, options, and cryptocurrencies. In addition, it provides learning and education solutions, including Snacks for business news stories, News Feeds that give access to free premium news from different sites, and first trade recommendations.

In August, HOOD announced its second round of layoffs this year, slashing 23% of its headcount by letting go of 800 employees, with marketing, operations, and product management functions of the firm being the most impacted. The company blamed the worsening of the economy, including inflation and the crypto market crash, which had reduced customer trading activity and assets under custody.

Financial services companies are also struggling with a shrinking active user base and increasing regulatory pressure. The monthly active users (MAU) declined 1.9% million sequentially to 14 million for June 2022, as consumers navigate an environment marked by high-interest rates and surging inflation.

For the fiscal 2022 second quarter ended June 30, 2022, HOOD’s revenues decreased 43.7% year-over-year to $318 million. Its operating expenses increased 21.8% from the year-ago value to $610 million. The company’s adjusted EBITDA was negative $80 million, compared to $90 million in the prior-year period.

In addition, the company’s net loss and loss per share attributable to common stockholders amounted to $295 million and $0.34, respectively.

The consensus revenue estimate of $353.60 million for the fiscal year 2022 (ending December 2022) represents a 24.7% decline from the prior-year period. The company’s loss per share is expected to come in at $1.14 for the current year. Furthermore, the company has missed the consensus revenue estimates in each of the trailing four quarters.

HOOD’s shares have slumped 21.4% over the past six months and 44.4% year-to-date to close the trading session at $10.26. Continue reading "3 Meme Stocks to Avoid"

3 Stocks to Sell if You're Bearish on Crypto

The largest cryptocurrency, Bitcoin, topped the $20,000 barrier on Friday on optimistic market sentiments about a possible drop in inflation numbers. The second largest crypto, Ether, also rose on Friday.

However, additional interest rate hikes will likely constrict the economy, which is expected to create pressure on the relatively riskier crypto market. Experts believe cryptocurrencies will continue a downtrend amid the volatile economic backdrop.

Moreover, digital currencies might face heightened regulations in the future. Gary Gensler, the current SEC chair, stated that the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) needs greater authority to oversee and regulate crypto non-security tokens and related intermediaries.

Moreover, with the much-anticipated Ether merge expected to occur soon, the crypto market might experience more volatility. Hence, the blockchain stocks Block, Inc. (SQ), Coinbase Global, Inc. (COIN), and Riot Blockchain, Inc. (RIOT) might be best avoided now.

Block, Inc. (SQ)

SQ engages in the creation of tools that enable sellers to accept card payments and provides reporting and analytics and next-day settlement. The company also provides hardware products.

On July 13, SQ subsidiary Afterpay and beauty retailer Sephora announced their partnership to enable customers to pay for U.S. beauty brands and products in four installments. However, the gains from this partnership might be stretched over a long period of time.

For the fiscal second quarter that ended June 30, SQ’s total net revenue decreased 5.9% year-over-year to $4.40 billion. Adjusted net income decreased 56.8% from the prior-year quarter to $110.74 million. Adjusted net income per share declined 63.3% from the same period the prior year to $0.18.

The consensus revenue estimate of $17.60 billion for the fiscal year 2022 indicates a 0.3% year-over-year decrease.

The stock has declined 70% over the past year and 54% year-to-date to close its last trading stock at $74.29. Continue reading "3 Stocks to Sell if You're Bearish on Crypto"

3 Well-Positioned Momentum Stocks

The stock market has witnessed significant volatility due to several macroeconomic and geopolitical headwinds this year. With inflation remaining elevated and the possibility of the Fed raising interest rates aggressively, the market is expected to remain volatile.

Amid this uncertain environment, a good strategy could be buying stocks that have gained momentum recently and are well-positioned to maintain the same based on their strong fundamentals and growth prospects, irrespective of the market movements. Investors’ interest in momentum stocks is evident from the Invesco DWA Momentum ETF’s (PDP) 8.2% returns over the past month.

PBF Energy Inc. (PBF), Global Partners LP (GLP), and GeoPark Limited (GPRK) have shown no signs of slowing down and are currently trading at discounts to their peers.

Strong fundamentals should help these stocks maintain their momentum in the upcoming months. So, it could be wise to invest in these stocks.

PBF Energy Inc. (PBF)

PBF is a petroleum refiner and supplier of gasoline, diesel fuel, jet fuel, unbranded transportation fuels, heating oil, petrochemical feedstocks, lubricants, and other petroleum products. The company operates through two segments: Refining; and Logistics.

On July 28, 2022, PBF announced the acquisition of the remaining public stake in PBF Logistics LP. As of July 22, 2022, it owned approximately 47.7% of the outstanding common units of PBF Logistics.

Tom Nimbley, PBF Energy’s and PBF Logistics’ Chairman and CEO, said, “This transaction will ultimately allow us to simplify our corporate structure and eliminate administrative, compliance, and cost burdens of running a separate public company. Following consummation of the merger, we believe that the combined company will have a significantly enhanced financial profile.”

For the second quarter, which ended June 30, 2022, PBF’s revenues increased 104.1% year-over-year to $14.08 billion. Its income from operations rose 1,057% from its year-ago value to $1.71 billion.

The company’s adjusted net income increased 2,416% year-over-year to $1.21 billion, while its EPS grew 2,374.3% from the prior-year quarter to $9.65. Also, its adjusted EBITDA grew substantially from the year-ago value to $1.91 billion.

In terms of forward non-GAAP P/E, PBF is currently trading at 1.95x, 74.9% lower than the industry average of 7.76x. Its forward EV/S multiple of 0.16x is 91.9% lower than the industry average of 1.95x. In addition, the stock’s forward EV/EBITDA and EV/EBIT ratios came in at 1.85x and 2.21x, compared to the industry averages of 5.67x and 8.64x, respectively. Continue reading "3 Well-Positioned Momentum Stocks"

2 REITs to Buy and Hold

Despite the macroeconomic headwinds, real estate investment trusts (REITs) are expected to remain resilient due to rising demand, appreciation of property prices amid the high inflation, and increasing rental income. Moreover, REITs are considered ideal investments in uncertain market conditions since they pay out at least 90% of their income as dividends.

So, quality REITs LTC Properties (LTC) and Getty Realty (GTY) could be ideal investments to survive the short-term market fluctuations and create solid long-term returns.

High inflation, rising interest rates, and economic uncertainties have discouraged home buyers this year. However, increased regional population distribution, rising demand for rental properties, and appreciating property prices bode well for real estate investment trusts (REITs).

In addition, the inclination of businesses toward local sourcing after the pandemic is expected to drive further growth in this sector. The real estate sector in the United States is projected to grow at a 3.7% CAGR to $412.60 billion by 2025.

Moreover, REITs are considered safe investments in uncertain times since they must pay at least 90% of their taxable income as dividends.

Fundamentally sound REITs LTC Properties, Inc. (LTC) and Getty Realty Corporation (GTY) could offer diversification, inflation hedge, and superior dividend returns to long-term investors.

LTC Properties, Inc. (LTC)

LTC invests in senior housing and healthcare properties. It invests in four broad segments: Skilled Nursing centers (SNF); Assisted Living Facilities (ALF); Independent Living Facilities (ILF); and Memory Care facilities (MC). Its operations include sale-leasebacks, mortgage financing, joint ventures, construction financing, and structured financing solutions. Continue reading "2 REITs to Buy and Hold"