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5 Great Travel & Retail Stocks to Buy for Thanksgiving

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Travel and shopping are major priorities for Americans over the Thanksgiving period. Projections from the American Automobile Association (AAA) reveal that the number of Americans traveling this Thanksgiving will be the highest in 13 years. Meanwhile, Airlines for America (A4A) predicts that air travel will hit an all-time during the 12-day Thanksgiving period.

Despite the rise of online retail, experts think that the Black Friday period is a crucial time for conventional retailers. A survey released by National Retail Federation (NRF) shows that the Thanksgiving weekend will see a substantial number of shoppers. This is why it makes sense to stock up on travel and retail stocks at this time.

Highest Number of Thanksgiving Travelers in 13 Years

Projections from the AAA indicate 54.3 million Americans will travel 50 miles or farther from home this Thanksgiving. This represents a year-over-year increase of 4.8% and the highest in terms of travel volume since 2005. Most Americans, an estimated 48.5 million will travel by road, which is 5% higher than last year.

Buses, cruise ships and trains will experience a 1.4% uptick in the number of travelers, estimated to touch 1.48 million passengers. However, the largest growth will be witnessed in air travel. An estimated 4.27 million will take to the skies this Thanksgiving, 5.4% higher than last year.

According to A4A projections, this 12-day Thanksgiving air travel period will witness the highest number of passengers on record. The A4A predicts that 30.6 million passengers will board U.S. airlines during this period, higher than 29 million last year. The busiest day will be Nov 25, predicted to witness 3.06 million passengers.

Thanksgiving Weekend to Witness 164 Million Shoppers

According to the annual survey conducted by Prosper Insights & Analytics for the NRF, 164 million Americans will scramble to grab offers over the Thanksgiving weekend. Per the NRF’s Ana Smith, Black Friday is the second-biggest shopping day of the holiday season. The day will see 116 million Americans hunting for the best bargains.

Per the survey, 21% of those looking to splurge over this holiday weekend will shop on Thanksgiving Day. While this works out to 34 million, Black Friday will be the busiest day of this period, with 71% or 116 million joining the shopping frenzy.

Nearly 46% or 75 million Americans will make the best of online bargains on Cyber Monday, which brings this period to a close. (Read: 6 Consumer Discretionary Stocks to Buy for Black Friday Week)

Our Choices

Projections from the AAA and the A4A indicate that a record number of Americans will travel during the Thanksgiving period. Meanwhile, a survey released by the NRF predicts that the Thanksgiving weekend will witness a large number of shoppers.

This is why it makes sense to add travel and retail stocks to your portfolio. We have narrowed our search to the following stocks based on a good Zacks Rank and other relevant metrics.

Spirit Airlines, Inc. (SAVE - Free Report) is an ultra-low-cost carrier that went public in 2011. The company provides travel opportunities, principally to and from South Florida, the Caribbean and Latin America.

Spirit Airlines’ expected earnings growth for the current year is 11.6%. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for current-year earnings has improved 6.5% over the last 30 days. The stock sports a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.

Hertz Global Holdings, Inc. (HTZ - Free Report) is a key player in the vehicle rental industry. Its subsidiary, The Hertz Corporation, is responsible for the operation of vehicle rental services under the Hertz, Dollar and Thrifty brands.

Hertz has a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). The company has expected earnings growth of 52.2% for the current year. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for current-year earnings has improved 17.5% over the last 30 days.

Macy's, Inc. (M - Free Report) is one of the leading department store retailers in the United States.

Macy's has a Zacks Rank #2. The company has expected earnings growth of 11% for the current year. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for current-year earnings has moved up 2.8% over the last 30 days.

Target Corporation (TGT - Free Report) operates as a general merchandise retailer in the United States.

Target has a Zacks Rank #2. The company has expected earnings growth of 14.8% for the current year. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for current-year earnings has increased 0.4% over the last 30 days.

Ross Stores, Inc. (ROST - Free Report) operates as an off-price retailer of apparel and home accessories, primarily in the United States.

Ross Stores has a Zacks Rank #2. The company has expected earnings growth of 23.6% for the current year. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for current-year earnings has improved 0.2% over the last 30 days.

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