In just a matter of days, the S&P 500 managed to produce a sell-off of more than 6%. The equity strategy team at Jefferies concede that the recent correction in share prices has raised concerns that the market is about to enter a bear phase. While stocks certainly do not look cheap to them, it would require a significant change in monetary and credit conditions before stocks became trapped in a bear market. This earnings season will let the market have a better look if the argument for multiple or price-to-earnings expansion is warranted. The Jefferies team thinks that the likelihood of an extended, vicious sell-off is unlikely.
In their report, they had a list of some of the top names that took the biggest hit during the sell-off. We screened their list for some of the top names that are favored across Wall Street. Some of them have backed up to very attractive entry points. We have listed those by the highest percentage decline.
E*Trade Financial Corp. (NASDAQ: ETFC) got stung to the tune of a whopping 15.75%. The company is known for its online trading platform, and it has swapped the talking baby from its commercials for hot Hollywood actor Kevin Spacey, the star of House of Cards. In the first ad of the campaign, which began running recently, a range of city workers from a doctor to an amateur basketball player sing a song about being “Type E,” or investing with E*Trade. The Thomson/First Call price target for the stock is $23.50. E*Trade closed Tuesday at $19.98.
TripAdvisor Inc. (NASDAQ: TRIP) took a large hit of 12.4% during the short but heavy sell-off. The company is the world’s largest travel site, enabling travelers to plan and have the perfect trip. TripAdvisor branded sites make up the largest travel community in the world, reaching more than 260 million unique monthly visitors in 2013, and more than 150 million reviews and opinions covering more than 3.7 million accommodations, restaurants and attractions. The consensus price target on Wall Street is $97.14. TripAdvisor closed Tuesday at $86.07.
Micron Technology Inc. (NASDAQ: MU) had just posted solid earnings for the quarter before it got knocked down 10.84%. The company, which is a leader in DRAM chip sales, has seen a nice streak of beating earnings estimates, especially when looking at the previous two reports. Micron has beaten estimates by at least 35% in both cases, suggesting it has a nice short-term history of crushing expectations. The consensus price target is $28.30. Micron closed Tuesday at $22.21.
Expedia Inc. (NASDAQ: EXPE) has absolutely exploded pricewise over the past year, and more gains are expected, especially after a nasty 9.81% sell-off. The company provides travel products and services to leisure and corporate travelers, offline retail travel agents and travel service providers through a portfolio of brands, including Expedia.com, Hotels.com, Hotwire.com, Expedia Affiliate Network, Classic Vacations, Expedia Local Expert, Egencia, Expedia CruiseShipCenters, eLong and Venere.com. Investors are paid a 0.8% dividend. The consensus price target is $76.59. Expedia closed Tuesday at $70.02.
Facebook Inc. (NASDAQ: FB) has been knocked down 21% from peak levels and 9.2% in the recent sell-off. It now trades at the same forward price-to-earnings multiple that it did last year, adjusted for extra shares and dilution. The social media giant has ramped up mobile advertising earnings and has crushed earnings in the past three quarters. Wall Street analysts think that Facebook is becoming more central to the overall Internet marketing funnel, gaining share of marketing spending with interest from branding, public relations, direct response and CRM functions, as well as online search and display budgets. The consensus price target is $73.96. Facebook closed Tuesday at $58.19.
Vertex Pharmaceuticals Inc. (NASDAQ: VRTX) is a top biotech name that was sold off to the tune of a large 8.16%. Its new drug VX809 has a 50% chance of succeeding in Phase III trials. In February 2013, Vertex began two six-month, international Phase III clinical trials of Kalydeco and VX-809 in people with two copies of the Delta F508 mutation ages 12 and older. The combination drug is for the treatment of cystic fibrosis. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has awarded Kalydeco and VX-809 “Breakthrough Therapy Designation,” which is intended to speed the development of select potential therapies that treat life-threatening diseases or conditions. The consensus target is $91.66, and Vertex closed Tuesday at $65.35.
Adobe Systems Inc. (NASDAQ: ADBE) is another top tech stock that was manhandled to the tune of 7.65%. The company recently announced the availability of Lightroom mobile, a companion app to Lightroom desktop software, only available as part of Adobe Creative Cloud. The new Lightroom mobile app brings powerful Lightroom tools to the iPad, delivering photography essentials — such as non-destructive processing of files — and utilizing new Smart Preview technologies to free professional-class photo editing from the confines of the desktop. The consensus price target for this top name is $73.14. Adobe closed Tuesday at $61.82.
Akamai Technologies Inc. (NASDAQ: AKAM) is another top technology name that was knocked down 7.46%. The company has started to expand its presence in the critical security market and has aspirations to expand to ancillary areas. The company sees its recent Prolexic acquisition as very different but adjacent to its Kona suite and could look at additional network-based security capabilities to address the area between the application and end user; technologies that cover DDoS appliances, app changes, identity management and analytics. Combined with the company’s huge server business, this could make it a top name for investors, especially at reduced prices. The consensus price target is $63.47. Akamai closed Tuesday at $54.45.
Many of these top names are top technology names. Most of the Wall Street firms we cover have listed the technology sector as one they expect to excel the rest of the year. While it is very possible that a resumption of the intense selling could start again, the positive overall metrics of the economy, combined with the beginning of earnings season, may hold the sellers back of now.
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