Technology stocks have helped drive global markets for years and are likely to continue to for decades. Despite some volatility, driven by a slowing global economic picture and the ongoing trade war between the U.S. and China, U.S. stock indexes such as the S&P 500 rest within roughly 1% of their all-time highs.
With this in mind, investors might want to look for a few growth-focused tech stocks. Therefore, we have paired our proven Zacks Rank with our Style Scores system, which includes a “Growth” category.
Investors should note that our Growth category values earnings and sales growth, as well as improvements to a company’s financial statements. Now let’s dive into three tech stocks that came through our screen today that growth investors might want to consider buying at the moment…
1. PayPal (PYPL - Free Report)
PayPal has been at the forefront of the digital and mobile payment space for years. The firm added nine million new active accounts last quarter to lift its global total by 17% from the year-ago period to 286 million. Meanwhile, total transactions surged 28% to 3 billion, with person-to-person volume up 40% to account for roughly 30% of total payment volume. PayPal’s P2P growth was driven by Venmo, which competes against Square’s (SQ - Free Report) Cash App and similar offerings from banking giants. PYPL has also invested hundreds of millions of dollars in Uber (UBER - Free Report) and expanded its partnership with the ride-hailing power.
PYPL shares have climbed 25% in 2019 to outpace the S&P 500 and its industry’s 18% climb. PayPal stock has also been on a stellar run since it spun off from eBay (EBAY - Free Report) in 2015, but its shares are down 10% over the last three months after it slightly lowered its 2019 outlook. With that said, our current Zacks Consensus Estimates call for the firm’s Q3 earnings to jump 20.7% on nearly 18% higher revenue. The company’s fiscal 2019 earnings are projected to soar 30% on 14.7% stronger sales. Peeking further ahead, PayPal’s 2020 EPS is expected to pop 11.3% on approximately 18% higher revenue. PayPal is a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy) at the moment that rocks a “B” grade for Growth and looks poised to expand for years in a global economic landscape dominated by digital—just look at how much tech titans Google (GOOGL - Free Report) , Apple (AAPL - Free Report) , and even Facebook (FB - Free Report) have tried to expand their payment businesses recently.
2. Alibaba (BABA - Free Report)
Right off the bat, investors should know that news broke Monday that Chinese government representatives have been assigned to work within 100 local companies, including Alibaba. The Chinese government has always had a close relationship with private enterprises, yet the news did alarm Wall Street enough to see BABA stock close regular trading Monday down 2.5%. Clearly the situation merits more monitoring, but it could mean business as usual for giants like Alibaba. The Chinese e-commerce firm, which is often compared to its American counterpart Amazon (AMZN - Free Report) , saw its annual active consumers on its retail marketplaces hit 674 million last quarter, with mobile MAUs up 121 million to 755 million.
The Chinese e-commerce powerhouse looks ready to thrive in its post-Jack Ma era, which includes its continued expansion into cloud computing. The division made up 7% of sales last quarter, with cloud computing revenue up 66%. The company’s current-year revenue (fiscal 2020) is expected to surge over 32%, with 2021 sales projected to climb 31% higher. Meanwhile, Alibaba’s earnings are projected to climb 25.5% and 23.9%, respectively. Alibaba is a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) at the moment that holds a “B” grade for Growth. On top of that, BABA’s valuation picture looks far more reasonable as the company expands its reach in smaller cities throughout the world’s second-largest economy.
3. EPAM Systems, Inc. (EPAM - Free Report)
EPAM is an IT services firm that operates in over 25 countries, across four continents and works with a diverse array of clients on everything from software engineering and product/platform development to infrastructure and licensing. Shares of EPAM Systems have skyrocketed 60% in 2019. EPAM stock has cooled off slightly over the past three months to rest roughly 8% below their 52-week highs. Despite the recent underperformance, the Newtown, Pennsylvania-based company posted stronger-than-projected Q2 results in August and upped its full-year guidance.
The firm’s current-quarter earnings estimate is up $0.03 in the last 60 days, with fiscal 2019 and 2020’s earnings estimates up even more significantly. EPAM Systems’ third-quarter revenue is projected to surge 23.9% to match Q2’s top-line expansion. EPAM’s fiscal 2019 revenue is then projected to pop over 23%, with 2020’s sales expected to jump 22.2% above our current-year projection. At the bottom end of the income statement, the digital platform engineering and software development services firm is projected to post 21% earnings expansion in both fiscal 2019 and 2020. EPAM currently rocks a “B” grade for Growth and holds a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).
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