2024’s Investment Darlings: 3 Stocks Analysts Can’t Stop Talking About

Stock Market

Despite a downturn to begin 2024, certain stocks continue to stand out. While they might be divided on the overall direction of the market, analysts remain bullish on many individual stocks. They share common attributes. That includes solid earnings, strong competitive advantages, and catalysts that are expected to drive their share prices higher.

Investors looking for safe places to park their money in the current market should pay close attention to the ratings and outlooks that analysts have on some stocks. This is especially true when the consensus outlook for a particular stock is very strong. As we continue to navigate a rocky start for the market, let’s explore some of 2024’s investment darlings: three stocks analysts can’t stop talking about.

Lululemon (LULU)

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Analysts are singing the praises of Lululemon Athletica (NASDAQ:LULU). The athletic apparel maker raised its fourth quarter sales and profit forecasts on strong holiday sales.

In early December, Lululemon had forecast soft holiday sales amid concerns about weak consumer spending. But now, LULU is pleased with last month’s sales. In fact, consumer spending proved to be more resilient than anticipated.

The company said that it now expects Q4 revenue of $3.170 billion to $3.190 billion. That compares with a previous forecast of $3.135 billion to $3.170 billion in sales. In terms of profit, Lululemon now anticipates earnings per share (EPS) of $4.96 to $5. The prior forecast was $4.85 to $4.93. Previously, the company announced Q3 financial results that beat Wall Street forecasts across the board. LULU stock has gained 64% over the last 12 months and is up 269% over the past five years.

BlackRock (BLK)

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BlackRock (NYSE:BLK) is the world’s largest asset manager with more than $9 trillion of assets under management. And, it’s expected to be a big beneficiary of spot Bitcoin (BTC-USD) exchange-traded funds (ETFs) should they be approved by the the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). Accordingly, BlackRock has set the fee for its proposed Bitcoin ETF at 0.30%. This stands among the lowest of more than a dozen competitors that have also applied to the SEC to launch BTC ETFs.

BlackRock’s fee is lower than the fees of 0.80% and 0.39% set by competitors Valkyrie Investments and Fidelity, among others. The proposed fees come as BlackRock and the other asset managers await a Jan. 10 SEC decision of approving spot Bitcoin ETFs. Indeed, this would be a first for the American marketplace. If approved, the ETFs are expected to attract billions of dollars in new capital. Thus, analysts see BlackRock as a big winner in the space.

BLK stock has gained only 5% in the last year but has doubled over the past five years.

Nvidia (NVDA)

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Analysts continue to be bullish on chipmaker Nvidia (NASDAQ:NVDA). After all, it was a top-performing stock in 2023, rising more than 200% during the year.

In recent months, new U.S. export controls imposed on the sale of microchips and semiconductors to China raised concerns for NVDA. Specifically, Nvidia derives about a quarter of its annual revenue from China. However, the company is addressing those concerns, producing a new AI chip exclusively for the Chinese market.

Called the “H20,” the new chip is the most powerful of three China-focused microchips Nvidia has developed to meet new U.S. export rules that were introduced last autumn. Production of the H20 is scheduled to begin in this year’s second quarter. The chip includes most of Nvidia’s features for AI work but with reduced computing power to comply with U.S. government rules. NVDA executives have said that the new AI chip should help to preserve its dominant market share in China.

NVDA stock has increased 1,275% in the last five years.

On the date of publication, Joel Baglole held a long position in NVDA. The opinions expressed in this article are those of the writer, subject to the InvestorPlace.com Publishing Guidelines.

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