The Best Performing Technology Stocks of 2013

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The stock market may have seen increased volatility of late, but stocks are still in a bull market. 24/7 Wall St. has evaluated the best performing technology stocks of the S&P 500 so far in 2013 to see if the prospects ahead have expected upside or downside.

We have already evaluated the top double-digit gainers of the DJIA and the five worst DJIA stocks of the second quarter. To keep the performance measurements in check, we have added color on each and also have included the consensus price targets from Thomson Reuters. Performance and valuations were calculated by Finviz.com under the best technology stocks of the S&P 500 Index. These have been listed in order of the best gains so far for 2013 rather than in alphabetical order.

Micron Technology Inc. (NASDAQ: MU) remains on fire as a turnaround. Its DRAM dominance has been helped by flash memory and investors remain optimistic about the Elpida acquisition. Shares rose 126% during the first half and rose by more than 50% in the second quarter alone. After it closed at $14.33 on the last day of the quarter, analysts have continued to ratchet their expectations higher as the consensus price target is up at $15.98.

Hewlett-Packard Co. (NYSE: HPQ) remains a top-performing tech stock as a turnaround is underway. It is also cheap on a valuation basis, as rival Dell is under a go-private transaction. Unfortunately, the gains seen in 2013 were front-loaded, as the stock is up 76% year to date but only 7% in the second quarter. HP closed out the quarter at $24.80, but investors may want to pay attention that the consensus price target is lower at $22.81.

Advanced Micro Devices Inc. (NYSE: AMD) remains in turnaround mode, and we have had a hard time being positive about this all-in-all negative story. That being said, AMD shares are up 70% year to date, and almost all that gain was seen in the second quarter. At $4.08, the stock is above the consensus price target of $3.45 but still well under the very ambitious Wells Fargo target of $5 to $7 for AMD shares.

Electronic Arts Inc. (NASDAQ: EA) was listed as the fourth best technology stock of 2013. Investors are eager about a new console upgrade cycle coming late in 2013, but the issue of a CEO change is still ongoing. The gain has been more than 58% so far in 2013, and the gains were equal through the year as the second quarter performance was more than 28%. EA closed at $22.99 on the last day of the second quarter, and that actually is above the fair value price target of $22.76 from Wall Street analysts.

Seagate Technology PLC (NASDAQ: STX) and Western Digital Corp. (NASDAQ: WDC) are doing what they normally do. The duopoly disk-drive makers are in a horse race that is so close they might as well be considered the same. Seagate’s gain of more than 48% so far in 2013 is only a point above Western Digital’s gain. Western Digital was up not quite a half-percentage point more for the second quarter with its gain of 23.7%. Seagate closed out at $44.83, against a consensus price target of $41.47, and Western Digital’s closing price of $62.09 compared to a consensus price target of $62.74.

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