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Buy These 3 Consumer Stocks Amid Chinese Trade War Concerns

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Stocks experienced substantial declines on Thursday, spurred by concerns surrounding possible tariff-related retaliation from China against U.S. giants such as Boeing (BA - Free Report) , while Facebook (FB - Free Report) sunk further on data breach woes.

Speculation about a possible trade war between the U.S. and China might have turned into a legitimate concern after President Donald Trump announced a new set of tariffs on up to $50 billion of Chinese imports on Thursday.

With that said, some industries don’t seem like they will be negatively impacted by Trump’s Chinese sanctions. One particular sector that seems like it could avoid retaliation is U.S. consumer discretionary spending.

So now let’s take a look at three companies that are currently Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) stocks that look poised to fly under the radar of any possible counter-tariff measures China might deploy. 

1.      Macy's (M - Free Report)

This retailer is coming off a strong fourth quarter that saw investor faith renewed. Looking ahead, Macy’s is projected to expand its earnings by 50% in the first quarter to reach $0.36 per share, based on our current Zacks Consensus Estimates.The retailer’s Q1 earnings estimates have also been trending upward in a big way recently, with our consensus mark jumping from $0.23 to $0.36 within the last seven days.

Macy’s also looks like a strong value play at the moment. The company is trading with a P/E of 7.9, which is far below the “Retail - Regional Department Stores” industry’s average P/E of 13. Macy’s is also trading at a substantial discount compared to where it was at earlier this month, as well as competitor Dillard’s (DDS - Free Report) P/E of 13.9.

Investors should be happy to get similar exposure to the retail sector at a much more attractive earnings multiple—for a bellwether firm, nonetheless.The retailer is also far less exposed to a possible trade war, as China is reportedly much more likely to go after Trump’s manufacturing base than attack an upscale retailer.

2.       Weight Watchers (WTW - Free Report)

Weight Watchers recently announced a new line of retail kitchenware and meal-prep kit offerings as part of a larger goal to expand beyond its membership-based weight-loss program. Coupled with Oprah Winfrey’s presence, the company seems ready to soar to new heights.

Looking ahead to the first quarter of 2018, Weight Watchers’ sales are projected to climb 14% to hit $375.05 million. For the full year, revenues are expected to reach $1.55 billion, which would mark a nearly 19% climb. At the same time, WTW’s earnings are projected to surge over 29% to hit $2.13 per share this year.

And it is hard to imagine exactly how much heat, if any, Weight Watchers would feel during a possible Chinese trade war.

3.       Sony (SNE - Free Report)

This Japanese entertainment and electronics powerhouse is highly diversified, from its movie studio and consumer electronics staples to its recent foray into virtual reality. Maybe more importantly, Japan is a major U.S. ally that could be effectively propped up amid a trade war with China.   

Sony is expected to see its current full-year revenues surge 11.5% to reach $78.12 billion, and the company’s bottom-line expansion projection is even more impressive for a company its size. Sony’s earnings are expected to skyrocket 656.9% to hit $3.86 per share. Sony also currently offers a great deal of value for a company that is poised to grow at such a substantial clip.

Sony is currently trading at 12.6x forward earnings, which marks a major discount compared to it industry’s average P/E of 19.9, as well as peers such as Panasonic (PCRFY - Free Report) .

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