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Best Stocks For The Second Half of 2017

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As the second half of the year gets underway, investors should be looking at growth stocks to help boost returns for the full year.  Often times, analysts will start the year with strong numbers and then as year goes by they will walk their expectations down.

The key for the second half of the year should be looking for stocks that are seeing their expectations growing, not shrinking. With that in mind, let’s look at some stocks that are fresh Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) stocks that have growth style scores of “A.”

Miley Cyrus Connection

You might not expect a man in his 40’s to be a fan of Miley Cyrus, but my coworkers can tell you I often rock out to some post Hannah Montana music.  Her most recent hit “Malibu” is a catchy tune, and it fits in with the first selection, Malibu Boats (MBUU - Free Report)

MBUU is both a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) and has a growth style score of “A” which is just what we are looking for. MBUU has already seen a solid move, gaining about 35% in the first half of the year but there is still more growth to come from this play.

With nearly full employment, leisure stocks are ones that we should be focusing on.  MBUU fits with everything we want to see right now, so for that reason it should be on your radar screen.

Follow Brian Bolan on Twitter @BBolan1


Malibu Boats, Inc. Price, Consensus and EPS Surprise

Malibu Boats, Inc. Price, Consensus and EPS Surprise | Malibu Boats, Inc. Quote


Thinly Traded Healthcare Stock

Addus Homecare Corporation (ADUS) is somewhat thinly traded so getting into and out of this stock will pose some challenges.  Basically, expect to see a wider spread as there isn’t a lot of liquidity.  In instances like this, I recommend using an “all or none” order when buying and selling.  This will prevent the HFT and algo traders from taking just a sliver of your order.

ADUS is a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) and also has a growth style score of “A” which is just what we are looking for. Earnings estimates have inched higher and the company also has a string of three consecutive beats of the Zacks Consensus Estimate.

When looking for a name that has growth that will last through the second half of the year, this stock works perfectly.  I see sequential revenue growth for the next two-quarters and of course some growth for 2018 as well.



Crunching Numbers On EXEL

I know that title is a little misleading as the next stock on my list is a biotech and really has almost nothing to do with the spreadsheet software from Microsoft.  The ticker just happens to be the exact same, but that isn’t the only reason I like Exelixis (EXEL).

The stock is a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) and has a divergence in style scores.  I like to see a divergence between growth and value style scores because it tells me I am on the right track.  Value investors and growth investors inherently are looking for something different, so when I see a growth style score of A and a value style score of F, I am not worried at all.  In fact, I prefer that situation to straight A’s.

EXEL requires investors to use a spreadsheet to calculate the massive positive earnings surprises it has posted over the last four quarters. The average positive earnings surprise is more than 500% with one coming in at 1,300% which is just huge.  Add to that the idea of increases in earnings estimates and a big implied earning growth rate for 2018 and you have a solid stock to keep in your radar screen.


Exelixis, Inc. Price and Consensus

Exelixis, Inc. Price and Consensus | Exelixis, Inc. Quote


Energy Names Popping Up

The energy trade has been a bad one for the first half of 2017, as oil has been weak for most of the year.  There are few major catalysts that look to change that pattern even as we are in the midst of the summer driving season.

I cannot say that I am that interested in these two names, but you have to keep an open mind as an investor.  Ignoring a whole sector simply puts limits on your returns and at the end of the day, this is just about getting some names on your radar screen.  You don’t have to buy them, so be sure to watch them anyway.

Both are Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) and have a growth style scores of “A” which is what this whole article is about.

Gran Tierra Energy (GTE) is coming off a strong beat of the Zacks Consensus Estimate, but one look at the chart tells you that the price of crude is really weighing on this stock.  Still, it is important to keep a name or two from the oil patch on your radar screen.

Delek Logisitcs Partners (DKL) is another name to keep on your list.  This is a pipeline play with terminals in Texas and Tennessee.  DKL also pays a healthy dividend which should act as an insurance policy for some of the other more “growthy” names we have already put on the list.

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