Stock markets have been in the positive territory in 2020 so far, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average, the S&P 500 and the tech-heavy Nasdaq rising 1.6%, 3.3% and 6.7%, respectively, as of Feb 21, 2020.
However, the coronavirus outbreak in China and its subsequent spread to countries like Iran and South Korea has resulted in uncertainty in the market. Notably, in the third week of February, the Nasdaq dropped 1.6% while the Dow and S&P slipped 1.4% and 1.3%, respectively. Per data available from IHS Markit, cited by MarketWatch, U.S. business contracted for the first time in four years owing to the coronavirus outbreak and increasing uncertainty over the outcome of the 2020 presidential election. IHS Markit said its U.S. composite output index — an aggregate measure of activity in the services and manufacturing sectors — fell to 49.6 in February, down from 53.3 in January and the lowest level since October 2013. A level below 50 indicates contraction, while a level above 50 signals expansion. However, executives participating in the survey opined that the current weakness is temporary and business will rebound in the latter part of the year. Technology Growth Prospects Aplenty The current scenario makes technology one of the most bankable sectors for investors in 2020. The Technology Select Sector SPDR’s (XLK) 8.5% year-to-date return is a testimony to the fact. Despite Apple’s warning of coronavirus hitting its business, the sector is expected to grow due to the rapid adoption of emerging technologies like AI, blockchain, cloud, IoT, autonomous vehicles and wearables. Moreover, the re-direction of production orders to other Asian countries, relatively unaffected by the coronavirus is a tailwind. Notably, per Zdnet, Samsung resumed operations at its handset factory in Gumi, South Korea after it was temporarily shut down due to a coronavirus infection. Additionally, the accelerated deployment of 5G technology and faster-than-expected growth in robotics set the stage for more development. Further, the growing clout of online gaming and esports, as well as music, video, and game streaming services are also expected to be catalysts. Furthermore, the semiconductor industry, which is witnessing a recovery trend, is expected to drive technology growth in 2020. Notably, semiconductors are the building blocks of the aforementioned technologies and are helping digitize healthcare, transport, financial systems, defense, agriculture, and retail, among others. Additionally, the technology sector is expected to benefit most from the interim trade deal between the United States and China. Our Picks In view of the aforesaid positive factors, we have zeroed in on six technology stocks having a market capital of more than $10 billion. These are likely to outperform the market and boost portfolio returns in 2020. These stocks have a favorable combination of a VGM Score of A or B and a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) or 2 (Buy). You can see . the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here Per Zacks’ proprietary methodology, stocks with this favorable combination offer good investment opportunities. One Year Price Performance
Qorvo QRVO is benefiting from the robust adoption of its wireless connectivity, base station and Gallium Nitride (GaN) technology-based solutions. Moreover, its expanding portfolio of 5G solutions amid accelerated deployment of 5G bodes well for the company. Qorvo has a market cap of $11.36 billion. The company sports a Zacks Rank #1 and has a VGM Score of B. Moreover, the consensus mark for fiscal 2021 earnings has increased 3.4% to $7 per share in the past 60 days. Intel INTC is benefiting from its data-centric focus. Strong adoption of its second-gen Xeon scalable processors as well as solid demand from cloud service providers is driving data centric businesses. The company is planning nine product releases on 10 nm this year. Moreover, it is adding 25% wafer capacity across its 14 nm and 10 nm nodes in 2020. This Zacks Rank #2 company has a market cap of $275.18 billion and a VGM Score of A. Additionally, the Zacks Consensus Estimate for 2020 earnings has increased 5.7% to $4.99 per share in the past 60 days. CDW Corporation ( CDW Quick Quote CDW - Free Report) is benefiting from its robust product portfolio and device refresh cycle, which is driving its corporate and government end markets. Moreover, CDW expects the acquisition of Scalar decisions to expand its footprint in Canada. The company has a market cap of $19.24 billion. CDW carries a Zacks Rank of #2 and has a VGM Score of A. Moreover, the Zacks Consensus Estimate for 2020 earnings has increased 2.1% to $6.69 per share in the past 60 days. Lam Research LRCX is benefiting from continued strength in logic and foundry spending. Transition to new data-enabled economy, in which DRAM and NAND continue to gain from density growth, is also aiding the company’s prospects. Moreover, robust adoption of 3D architecture is driving its non-memory segments. The company has a market cap of $46.11 billion. Lam Research carries a Zacks Rank of 2 and has a VGM Score of B. Moreover, the Zacks Consensus Estimate for fiscal 2020 earnings has increased 11.8% to $16.82 per share in the past 60 days. Match Group MTCH is benefiting from its robust portfolio of online dating services, with Tinder being the largest contributor to its subscriber base. Moreover, strong synergies from its buyouts of Meetic, Match, Hinge, OkCupid and PlentyOfFish bode well for the company. Notably, the company has entered into an agreement to separate from its parent company — InterActiveCorp. This Zacks Rank #2 company has a market cap of $20.66 billion and a VGM Score of B. Additionally, the Zacks Consensus Estimate for 2020 earnings has increased 3.1% to $2.31 per share in the past 60 days. Seagate Technology STX is benefiting from solid demand for its 16-terabyte products as well as growing traction of mass storage solutions across edge and enterprise markets. Improving trends in PC shipments is also a positive. Moreover, Seagate’s NAND-supply deal with Toshiba is expected to help it in developing advanced HDD, SSD and hybrid solutions. Seagate has a market of $14.1 billion. The company carries a Zacks Rank #2 and has a VGM Score of B. Moreover, the consensus mark for fiscal 2020 earnings has increased 3.3% to $5.06 per share in the past 60 days. Just Released: Zacks’ 7 Best Stocks for Today Experts extracted 7 stocks from the list of 220 Zacks Rank #1 Strong Buys that has beaten the market more than 2X over with a stunning average gain of +24.7% per year. These 7 were selected because of their superior potential for immediate breakout. See these time-sensitive tickers now >>