Despite a brutal sell-off so far this year in the tech sector, Wall Street analysts remain cautiously optimistic about Big Tech stocks ahead of upcoming second-quarter earnings this week, with the majority of experts predicting that companies like Apple, Microsoft and Alphabet can continue to post strong profits in the long-run.
Though tech stocks have been hard-hit this year (with the Nasdaq down 25%) amid surging inflation, rising interest rates and ongoing recession fears, a majority of Wall Street analysts still maintain buy ratings on Apple, Alphabet, Meta, Microsoft and Amazon ahead of key earnings results this week. Three firms reiterated buy ratings on several big names Monday: Deutsche Bank predicted solid results from Apple, Bank of America expects Facebook-parent Meta to see ad revenue take a smaller hit than expected and Oppenheimer predicts “robust” growth in Amazon’s AWS cloud services business. Analysts note that while the tech sector is already slowing down hiring across the board amid the more challenging economic environment, after a big sell-off earlier this year, valuations are now looking much more attractive. Netflix and Tesla saw their stocks rally last week after ‘better than feared’ results, while Snap delivered “another train wreck quarter that highlights a digital ad slowdown, Apple iOS privacy headwinds, and TikTok competition further heating up,” according to Wedbush analyst Dan Ives. While there’s been some “good and bad news” in the tech sector, “there are some encouraging signs” and investors can now buy shares in some of the biggest companies at a more attractive entry point, says Lindsey Bell, chief markets & money strategist for Ally. Among the more than 250 combined analysts covering the five big tech companies reporting earnings this week—Apple, Alphabet, Meta, Microsoft and Amazon—less than five have sell ratings—a sign of just how bullish Wall Street is on some of America’s most valuable tech companies.
What To Watch For:
Alphabet and Microsoft kick off Big Tech earnings on Tuesday. Meta reports Wednesday, while Apple and Amazon round out the list on Thursday.
“Investors should be selective when picking stocks within the tech sector,” says David Trainer, CEO of New Constructs. “The strongest types of stocks are the ones where cash flows are strong and valuations underestimate the company’s ability to generate cash flows in the future.” He especially likes Google-parent Alphabet, which is trading at a “much cheaper” valuation than its peers and should continue to outperform thanks to its ability to keep innovating. Trainer is “not as confident” about Facebook-parent Meta, however, questioning the company’s “ability to sustain profits,” especially as it struggles to retain users amid increased competition from the likes of TikTok. His firm also remains bullish and “big fans” of Apple, though the stock is still somewhat expensive, he adds.
All of the Big Tech stocks have seen big losses so far this year, though they have recovered somewhat in recent months. Meta has suffered the greatest losses, with its market value falling by roughly half as Facebook’s ad business continues to struggle. Amazon and Alphabet are both down roughly 25%, Microsoft more than 20% and Apple 15%.
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