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5 Stocks Basking in the Glory of Relative Price Strength

Nilanjan Choudhury

Whether a stock has the potential to offer considerable returns is determined primarily by its earnings and valuation ratios. Simultaneously, it is important to check whether its price performance exceeds its peers or the industry average.

On such comparison, if we find that a stock is unable to match up to wider sectoral growth despite having impressive earnings momentum or valuation multiples, it may be better to avoid it.

However, those outperforming their respective industries or benchmarks should be included in your portfolio, since they have a higher chance of securing significant returns. Picking a stock that outperforms its peers ensures that you have a winning option on your hands.

Then again, it is imperative that you determine whether or not an investment has relevant upside potential when considering stocks with significant relative price strength. Stocks delivering better than the S&P 500 over a period of 1 to 3 months at the least and having solid fundamentals indicate room for growth and are the best ways to go about this strategy.

Finally, it is important to find out whether analysts are optimistic about the upcoming earnings results of these companies. In order to do this, we have added positive estimate revisions for the current quarter’s (Q1) earnings to our screen. When a stock undergoes an upward revision, it leads to additional price gains.

Screening Parameters

Relative % Price change – 12 weeks greater than 0

Relative % Price change – 4 weeks greater than 0

Relative % Price change – 1 week greater than 0

(We have considered those stocks that have been outperforming the S&P 500 over the last 12 weeks, four weeks and one week.)

% Change (Q1) Est. over 4 Weeks greater than 0: Positive current quarter estimate revisions over the last four weeks.

Zacks Rank equal to 1: Only Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) stocks – that have returned more than 26% annually over the last 26 years and surpassed the S&P 500 in 23 of the last 26 years – can get through. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

Current Price greater than or equal to $5 and Average 20-day Volume greater than or equal to 50,000: A minimum price of $5 is a good standard to screen low-priced stocks, while a high trading volume would imply adequate liquidity.

VGM Score less than or equal to B: Our research shows that stocks with a VGM Score of A or B when combined with a Zacks Rank #1 or #2 (Buy) offer the best upside potential.

Here are five of the 11 stocks that made it through the screen:

Copa Holdings, S.A. CPA: Copa Holdings operates approximately 360 scheduled flights and flies to 80 destinations covering 32 countries in North, Central, South America and the Caribbean. The 2019 Zacks Consensus Estimate for this Panama City-based company is $7.03, representing some 7.8% earnings per share growth over 2018. Next year’s average forecast is $8.54 pointing to another 21.5% growth. Copa Holdings has a VGM Score of B.

HP Inc. HPQ: HP, headquartered in Palo Alto, CA, is a leading global provider of personal computing and other access devices, imaging and printing products, and related technologies, solutions and services. The firm has a VGM Score of A and an excellent earnings surprise history. It has a good track of outperforming/meeting estimates over the last four quarters at an average rate of 2%.

Hilltop Holdings Inc. HTH: Hilltop Holdings offers a wide range of financial products and services through broker-dealer (Hilltop Securities Inc. and Hilltop Securities Independent Network Inc.), mortgage origination (PrimeLending) and insurance (National Lloyds Corporation) divisions. The 2019 Zacks Consensus Estimate for this Dallas, TX-based company is $1.70, representing some 32.8% earnings per share growth over 2018. Next year’s average forecast is $1.79 pointing to another 5.4% growth. Hilltop Holdings has a VGM Score of A.

Delta Air Lines DAL: A leading provider of scheduled air transportation for passengers and cargo throughout the United States and around the world, Delta Air Lines has a VGM Score of A. Over 30 days, the Atlanta, GA-based carrier has seen the Zacks Consensus Estimate for 2019 and 2020 increase 5.7% and 4.5%, to $7.03 and $7.36 per share, respectively.

PennyMac Financial Services, Inc. PFSI: Founded in 2008 and headquartered in Westlake Village, CA, PennyMac Financial Services is one of the country’s largest non-bank mortgage originator and servicer of residential mortgage loans. The company has a VGM Score of B and a good earnings surprise history having surpassed estimates in three of the last four quarters.

You can get the rest of the stocks on this list by signing up now for your 2-week free trial to the Research Wizard and start using this screen in your own trading. Further, you can also create your own strategies and test them first before taking the investment plunge.

The Research Wizard is a great place to begin. It's easy to use. Everything is in plain language. And it's very intuitive. Start your Research Wizard trial today. And the next time you read an economic report, open up the Research Wizard, plug your finds in, and see what gems come out.

Click here to sign up for a free trial to the Research Wizard today

Disclosure: Officers, directors and/or employees of Zacks Investment Research may own or have sold short securities and/or hold long and/or short positions in options that are mentioned in this material. An affiliated investment advisory firm may own or have sold short securities and/or hold long and/or short positions in options that are mentioned in this material.

Disclosure: Performance information for Zacks’ portfolios and strategies are available at: https://www.zacks.com/performance.


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Delta Air Lines, Inc. (DAL) : Free Stock Analysis Report
 
Copa Holdings, S.A. (CPA) : Free Stock Analysis Report
 
HP Inc. (HPQ) : Free Stock Analysis Report
 
PennyMac Financial Services, Inc. (PFSI) : Free Stock Analysis Report
 
Hilltop Holdings Inc. (HTH) : Free Stock Analysis Report
 
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