The final trading day of an uncertain and volatile April is finally here. The major indices are all amid multi-week losing streaks, with the Nasdaq notably getting clobbered. This week, the Nasdaq saw its worst one-day decline since 2020 and touched a year-to-date low.
With the Nasdaq firmly in a bear market, and jittery investors nervous about other sectors, the overall sentiment for the market is tepid at best. The ripple effects of the Russia-Ukraine crisis are being felt worldwide, with Putin recently cutting off its gas supply to Poland and Bulgaria. Inflation remains scorching hot, and the Federal Reserve appears to be behind the curve, almost single-handedly causing April’s sell-offs with hawkish statements. A 0.50% rate hike seems imminent in May, with potential rate hikes of 0.75% in June and July. St. Louis Fed President James Bullard expressed alarm and urged swift moves to hike rates to roughly 3.5% by the end of the year.
Moreover, the U.S. GDP unexpectedly declined by 1.4% in Q1.
Be that as it may, the market appears to be shaking off this data and showing signs of life to close off the month. As the weather begins to heat up, the market could be starting to as well, with many negative catalysts already priced in.
UnitedHealth Group Incorporated (NYSE:UNH) and The Coca-Cola Company (NYSE:KO) are two stocks that have weathered the storm despite the broader downturn. These blue chips could have perfect positioning to chase upside from current dips while surviving market volatility. Best of all, they could have even more room to run based on both fundamental and technical indicators as well as analyst targets.
UnitedHealth Group Incorporated (NYSE:UNH)
Wells Fargo hiked its UnitedHealth Group Incorporated (NYSE:UNH) price target from $565 to $613.
UnitedHealth Group is the perfect stock for both fundamental and technical investors. A prominent player in the healthcare providers and services industry, UnitedHealth has a rock-solid balance sheet with cash flows sufficiently covering interest payments. It’s immensely profitable, well-run, and a long-term out performer which has also remained resilient during the current market downturn. While all the major indices have seen declines year-to-date, the UNH stock has seen more gains.
Moreover, if you are more focused on the long-term, the UNH stock has significantly outperformed the indices over the last 5 years as well.
If technical indicators are more your thing, the UnitedHealth stock has plenty of bullish ones. BarChart gives UNH an 80% BUY rating based on positive indicators such as its 20 – 50 Day MACD Oscillator, 20 – 100 Day MACD Oscillator, 20 – 200 Day MACD Oscillator, 50 Day Moving Average, 50 – 100 Day MACD Oscillator, 50 – 150 Day MACD Oscillator, 50 – 200 Day MACD Oscillator, 100 Day Moving Average, 150 Day Moving Average, 200 Day Moving Average, and 100 – 200 Day MACD Oscillator.
The best part is analysts love this stock. In an April 22, 2022 note, Wells Fargo adjusted its price target from $565 to $613 and maintained an overweight rating. Many other analysts believe the UNH stock could also touch or exceed $600. Raymond James maintained a Strong Buy rating and upped its price target from $540.00 to $620.00, while SVB Leerink and Oppenheimer each maintained an Outperform rating and upped their price targets from $550.00 to $600.00.
Based on 18 total ratings from the past three months, according to TipRanks, the general consensus is that UnitedHealth is a STRONG BUY. 15 rated it a buy, 3 a hold, and 0 a sell. The average price target is $586.95, with a high forecast of $665.00 and a low forecast of $485.00. The average price target represents an 11.92% upside from its April 28, 2022, close of $524.42.
The company’s year-to-date low and high are $442.42 and $553.29, respectively. On April 14, 2022, UnitedHealth reported strong first-quarter 2022 earnings and beat on the top and bottom lines. UnitedHealth reported EPS of $5.49, which beat consensus estimates by $0.14, and revenues of $80.15B, which beat consensus estimates by $1.38B.
Revenues grew by $10 Billion or 14% year-over-year, with double-digit growth at Optum and UnitedHealthcare. Earnings from Operations were $7 Billion, and Cash Flows from Operations were $5.3 Billion. The bottom line increased 3.4% year over year owing to growing revenues.
Fargo hiked its UnitedHealth Group Incorporated (NYSE:UNH) price target from $565 to $613.
The Coca-Cola Company (NYSE:KO)
The Coca-Cola Company (NYSE:KO) is one of 2022’s top-performing Dow Jones stocks.
After his earth-shaking purchase of Twitter, Elon Musk jokingly tweeted he would next buy Coca-Cola and “put the cocaine back in.” Musk’s tweet quickly gained more than 3.8 million likes and hundreds of thousands of retweets since it was posted.
A Dow Jones blue-chip stock, Coca-Cola remains a top-rated consumer product giant and leading producer of soda, juices and juice drinks, and ready-to-drink teas and coffees, distributed in more than 200 countries. Yet goofy tweets like Elon Musk’s aren’t the only reason the KO stock is buzzing as a potential top buy in this environment. Rising consumer prices and better-than-expected consumer activity continue pushing the stock higher and higher.
Coca-Cola has been on fire in 2022 as the third-best performing Dow Jones component. If not for historically surging energy costs pushing up the prices of Chevron and Dow Chemical, Coca-Cola would very likely come in at number 1. The KO stock touched an all-time high of $67.20 on April 25, 2022, and has dwarfed the performances of the Dow, S&P, and Nasdaq year-to-date with gains of 12+%.
Coca-Cola is financially sound, with a strong balance sheet, profit margins, and cash flow. The Company also reported strong earnings on April 25, 2022, with EPS of $0.64, beating consensus estimates by $0.06, and revenue of $10.50B, beating consensus estimates by $670.79M.
Technicals for the KO stock appear immensely bullish as well. BarChart gives the stock a 100% BUY score based on its 20 Day Moving Average, 20 – 50 Day MACD Oscillator, 20 – 100 Day MACD Oscillator, 20 – 200 Day MACD Oscillator, 50 Day Moving Average, 50 – 100 Day MACD Oscillator, 50 – 150 Day MACD Oscillator, 50 – 200 Day MACD Oscillator, 100 Day Moving Average, 150 Day Moving Average, 200 Day Moving Average, and 100 – 200 Day MACD Oscillator.
Analysts are high on this stock too. On April 26, 2022, HSBC maintained a Buy rating on Coca-Cola and raised its price target from $68 to $72. Guggenheim also kept its Buy rating and adjusted its price target from $68 to $71. Meanwhile, on the same day, Credit Suisse upped its price target from $66.00 to $68.00 and kept its “outperform” rating on the stock. At the same time, RBC Capital maintained its outperform rating on Coca-Cola and raised its price target to $69 based on strong organic sales. JP Morgan, back in March, also held its overweight rating and raised its price target to $68.
Based on 19 total ratings from the past three months, according to TipRanks, the general consensus is that the Coca-Cola stock is a MODERATE BUY. 13 rated it a buy, 6 a hold, and 0 a sell. The average price target is $70.00 with a high forecast of $76.00 and a low of $60.00. The average price target represents a 7.30% change from its April 28, 2022, closing price of $65.24.
The Company’s year-to-date low and high are $57.06 and $67.20, respectively. Outside of its significant earnings beat on both the top and bottom lines, Coke’s organic revenue, which strips out currency swings as well as acquisitions or divestitures, rose 18% in the quarter ended April 1, as unit case volume rose 8%. Despite its cost of goods sold rising 17% to $4.09 billion, Coke’s operating income also managed to increase 25% to $3.41 billion year-over-year.
UNH and KO are both fantastic buys this week. But, neither of them are a Bigstocks BIG buy. Our last 3 BIG buy stock picks grew a combined 368% after our alert. Click here to unveil our current featured BIG buy stock.
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