If you thought you woke up in a time warp, you can be forgiven.
That’s because some of the hottest tech stocks right now were the hottest ones during Tech Boom 1.0 at the turn of the millennium.
After a strong second-quarter report, Intel jumped 9 percent Wednesday. Year to date, the chipmaker is up 31 percent.
And, of course, there’s Microsoft. It’s trading at its highest levels since April 2000. After taking control of the company in February, CEO Satya Nadella has made a series of changes—including announcing Thursday plans to cut 18,000 jobs – that have sent the stock soaring. Shares of Microsoft are up 23 percent during the six months Nadella has been in charge.
Though he doesn’t own shares in either company, money manager Zachary Karabell said Microsoft is the better investment. Karabell, president of River Twice Research and head of global strategy for Envestnet, said Nadella “is bringing something distinct to this company in a way that (Steve) Ballmer, for all appearances, was not able to.”
“We have to see what [Nadella’s] strategy is going to be,” said Karabell, a CNBC contributor. “He’s clearly someone who gets that there needs to be one and that, to me, at least is the recipe for a potentially dynamic next stage of a company that by all means is one of the successful companies of the past 30 years.”
Steven Pytlar, chief equity strategist at Prime Executions, also likes Microsoft for the long term, though he believes the next major move up won’t happen for a couple of months.
“Technically, it’s ready for a break,” Pytlar said. “It could move sideways for the next month realistically—maybe two.”
For the longer term, however, Pytlar especially likes Microsoft’s stock based on its charts. He sees share prices making a long base after trading in a range roughly between $20 and $37.50 since 2001. It broke above that range when Nadella became CEO in early February.
“It moved in a very large consolidation phase, really for the last decade,” he said. “And now it’s moved above that range. The stock is being revalued higher. Technically, that’s a huge indicator that buyers are coming back in, demand for the stock is picking up, [and] there’s a new growth outlook going on here.”
“Longer term, we could see appreciation,” Pytlar added.
To see the full discussion on Microsoft, with Karabell on the fundamentals and Pytlar on the technicals, watch the above video.