A market downturn will always be the best time to shop for undervalued stocks, and 2022 is no different. With the S&P500 down by almost 18% year-to-date, investors should take advantage of this once-in-a-generation opportunity and snap up some oversold stocks before the economy’s gears start turning again. Many solid businesses are changing hands at hefty discounts in this difficult environment, with spooked investors retreating into more defensive assets.
However, some of these are businesses with robust fundamentals and will stay relevant for years, if not decades, into the future. Investors that buy the shares of these heavily-discounted businesses will be the ones to reap the rewards when the economy inevitably roars back. It can’t be a coincidence that some of the most successful and respected investors are contrarians who bought when everyone was selling.
Of course, it is impossible to predict when the market will bottom. It can still go down from here. But if you are looking to hold for the long-term, buying oversold stocks is guaranteed to pay dividends, and short-term losses should not worry you.
As most forecasts expect, the Federal Reserve will pivot next year and u-turn its monetary policy in 2024. The following seven deeply undervalued stocks are set to take advantage of the ensuing bull market.
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Alphabet (NASDAQ:GOOG) is down more than 33% year-to-date and is starting to become deeply-undervalued at this level. The company is going through a difficult time due to declining advertisement revenue and broader economic pressures. Accordingly, its earnings decline has led to a correction, perhaps an overdone one, as its top line continues to grow.
Almost all companies have seen earnings compression due to inflation and economic turmoil, and so has Alphabet. However, I expect the company’s earnings to recover due to layoffs and positive GDP growth. As the economy grows, businesses will increase their advertisement spending, positively impacting Alphabet’s bottom line.
Moreover, the company’s fundamentals are very solid and diverse. Alphabet sells much more than software nowadays, and the company won’t fade out of relevancy anytime soon. Thus, investors should take advantage of the current downturn.
One should also note that Alphabet’s net income grew as much as 166.2% year-over-year post-COVID. The current decline is only natural since the profits have to return more sustainable levels in the near-term.
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Crocs (NASDAQ:CROX) is a footwear company that is popular for selling foam clogs. Crocs are massively popular among Gen Z, and I see the brand being much more profitable in the future, especially in developing countries where Crocs has much more headroom for growth.
CROX stock had a steep correction earlier this year, declining more than 73% from its peak. When the stock was down 70%-plus, I wrote the following:
“Crocs remains among the most popular brands for teens despite the company’s recent downturn. Crocs’ recent earnings report was unsatisfactory due to its net income decline. However, its P/E ratio remains low, and the company’s high revenue growth can still make it profitable.”
While my anticipations have now come true, with the stock up 68% since, Crocs can still go higher. The company’s sales in developing countries are still very low, and I see a lot more growth to come. Thus, CROX remains one of the deeply undervalued stocks to buy, in my view.
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Like Alphabet, the tech selloff hit Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX) quite hard. The company had to compete with its 2021 metrics to appease investors, resulting in NFLX nosediving 73%% below its peak within six months. However, investors are soon realizing that Netflix is performing much better than its peers. The platform has retained most of its subscribers from the pandemic era, and its financials are doing much better despite the decline.
For example, Netflix posted revenue of $5.5 billion in Q4 2019, which is now almost $8 billion and still growing despite headwinds. Over the trailing 12 months, the company’s net income has gone from $1.9 billion to over $5 billion. Moreover, Netflix’s subscriber count stands at 223 million, up from 167 million. Perhaps the only significant metric for Netflix that’s below Q4 2019 levels is its stock price.
Furthermore, Netflix is still cutting costs and plans to increase its profitability through ads. It is also getting more strict with password sharing, which can also increase its revenue over time. Investors recognize the opportunity, and NFLX stock has crept up 72% from its lowest point this year. Even then, this stock has more upside as it remains well below pre-pandemic figures.
Meta Platforms (META)
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While Meta Platforms (NASDAQ:META) is seen by many as a falling knife due to its heavy investment in the metaverse, investors need to look deeper. Sure, only a few people are excited about the metaverse, but the company is much more than that. Meta owns Facebook, Messenger, Instagram, and WhatsApp. I don’t see a valuation of $295 billion as justified for a company owning so many popular platforms.
Moreover, the metaverse project is far from unsustainable. So far in 2022, Meta made $32 billion in operating profits from the “Family of Apps,” while it spent $9.4 billion on Reality Labs. Thus, the company is also far from being unprofitable.
Additionally, Meta has announced layoffs, much like other tech companies. That should help its bottom line stabilize until advertising revenue picks up again.
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Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) has a solid business that will remain relevant for the foreseeable future. It is also much more resilient than other tech companies as it continues to expand its workforce despite the market downturn. While most other undervalued stocks in the tech industry heavily rely on advertising revenue, Apple does not. As a result, the impact of declining ad revenue has been minimal for Apple.
In addition, higher-income folks make up the company’s primary customer base. They are not as vulnerable to high inflation, and as a result, Apple continues to see its sales increase. The company beat estimates with revenue growing 8.1% year-over-year this past quarter and net income rising 0.8% compared to last year. These metrics certainly justify its current premium price-earnings ratio of 24.5-times.
Investors in this market find stability and growth prospects compelling. Apple has both. It has shown exceptional resilience among FAANG stocks, and its sales have a lot of room for growth. Apple’s market share is still low outside the U.S. and Europe, and these fast-growing economies could become major markets for Apple products over the long-term.
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Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) is another one of the undervalued stocks I think will remain relevant in the long run. I argue that the company’s products are too entrenched in people’s everyday lives, and it is now almost impossible for white-collar businesses to run without Microsoft products. That guarantees the company an inelastic demand for a long time.
Of course, profit margins have taken a hit, much like most other companies. However, the current downturn presents a very compelling buying opportunity. When margins recover in line with the broader economy, a strong move to the upside is only a matter of time.
Microsoft’s top line grew 10.6% year-over-year to $50.1 billion, mainly driven by its cloud segment, which is now Microsoft’s top source of revenue. Azure and other cloud services grew 42% in constant currency terms. Thus, when its bottom line starts to recover, I see investors willing to pay more of a premium for MSFT stock.
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It’s an understatement that 2022 has been a devastating year for e-commerce companies. For Shopify (NYSE:SHOP), this has certainly been true, with the company’s stock price plummeting more than 70% from its peak. Shopify has suffered due to logistical issues and high inflation. However, those issues are not permanent, and the stock can be a multibagger in the long run.
It’s easy to see Shopify as among the best undervalued stocks, when compared to its pre-pandemic metrics. The e-commerce company’s financials are simply retreating to a more natural growth trend. Thus, comparing Shopify to its 2021 financials will give investors daunting numbers, painting it as a falling business. However, investors should realize the long-term opportunity for SHOP stock remains robust.
I believe SHOP stock will surge much higher once the company becomes profitable. That doesn’t seem very far away from this feat, with losses narrowing. Thus, this is definitely one of the best undervalued stocks to buy right now.
On the date of publication, Omor Ibne Ehsan did not have (either directly or indirectly) any positions in the securities mentioned in this article. The opinions expressed in this article are those of the writer, subject to the InvestorPlace.com Publishing Guidelines.
Omor Ibne Ehsan is a writer at InvestorPlace. He is also an active contributor to a variety of finance and crypto-related websites. He has a strong background in economics and finance and is a self taught investor. You can follow him on LinkedIn.
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