4 Top Jefferies Aggressive Growth Stock Picks to Buy Now

With the market seemingly back in a more bullish mode, and for the most part the early earnings numbers looking solid, a fourth-quarter move higher looks like it could be in the cards. Despite the recent rally, the Dow Jones Industrial Average and the S&P 500 are still down for the year, and it will take a big move in the markets to just get a year of positive low to middle single-digit gains.

A new research report from Jefferies focuses in on some growth stock calls that are decidedly more aggressive, but that also could have tremendous upside potential. While these are more suitable for accounts with a higher risk profile, they all make good sense for patient growth investors.


This is a solid health care sector company that has good upside potential. Cerner Corp. (NASDAQ: CERN) solutions assist clinicians in making care decisions and enable organizations to manage the health of populations. The company also offers an integrated clinical and financial system to help health care organizations manage revenue, as well as a wide range of services to support clients’ clinical, financial and operational needs.

Jefferies surveyed hospitals and found that only about 25% have replaced their electronic health record (EHR) systems. An electronic health record is a digital version of a patient’s paper chart. EHRs are real-time, patient-centered records that make information available instantly and securely to authorized users. The analysts feel that quality vendors like Cerner will continue to take share in these replacements.

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The Jefferies price target for the stock is $78, and the Thomson/First Call estimate is $75.70. The stock closed Friday at $65.25.

EPAM Systems

This company primarily provides software product development services worldwide. EPAM Systems Inc. (NASDAQ: EPAM) offers product research, design and prototyping, product development, component design and integration, full lifecycle software testing, product deployment and end-user customization, performance tuning, product support and maintenance and porting and cross-platform migration.

Many analysts on Wall Street believe that EPAM is one of the top new breed vendors with the largest social, mobility, analytics and cloud exposure, and one of the companies best positioned to generate hyper-growth. Jefferies recently met with the CEO and feels that despite the macro volatility medium term, expectations of 20% to 25% compounded annual growth rate are still safe. With it trading at 22 times 2016 calendar estimates, they also like the valuation.

While the stock is up huge over the past year and recently removed from the Franchise Picks list, the analysts still love this stock long term. Investors maybe should scale buy the stock, looking for any weakness.

The Jefferies price target is $95, and the consensus target is $78.64. Shares closed Friday at $79.21.

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This company was recently spun-off from eBay and many on Wall Street think the real growth is in the payment sector. PayPal Holdings Inc. (NASDAQ: PYPL) operates as a technology platform company that enables digital and mobile payments on behalf of consumers and merchants worldwide.

PayPal enables businesses of various sizes to accept payments from merchant websites, mobile devices and applications, as well as at offline retail locations through a range of payment solutions across company’s payments platform, including PayPal, PayPal Credit, Venmo and Braintree products. The company’s platform allows customers to pay and get paid, withdraw funds to their bank accounts and hold balances in their PayPal accounts in various currencies.

Jefferies thinks that revenue growth of 16% over the next five years is possible and the scarcity value, or lack of competition, could help drive the multiple for the company. The firm also pointed to the new acquisitions PayPal has made, like Venmo and Paydiant, that are leveragable with the combination of Paydiant. They also think that the eBay separation is likely to help the company’s positioning with large merchants.

Jefferies has a large $44 price target. The consensus target is $42.27. Shares closed last Friday at $34.29.

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This stock reported very solid numbers but is down huge over the past year and a half. VMware Inc. (NYSE: VMW) is a global leader in cloud infrastructure and business mobility. VMware’s industry-leading virtualization technology solutions deliver a brave new model of IT that is fluid, instant and more secure. Customers can innovate faster by rapidly developing, automatically delivering and more safely consuming any application. With 2014 revenues of $6 billion, VMware has more than 500,000 customers and 75,000 partners.

The company is adding enterprise license agreements at a furious pace, and cloud management tools are now 16% penetrated into the customer base, with plenty of room to grow. The bottom line is this company is back, and back with a vengeance. Despite a recent big move, the stock still is trading almost 37% below highs printed in April of 2014.

Of course the big issue is how many of the company’s shares will hit the tape as a result of the Dell deal with EMC, which has been a concern even before the deal surfaced. The analysts at Jefferies feel that that VMware will continue to trade at a discount to intrinsic value because of the overhang, but they see big upside to the stock from current trading levels.

The $104 Jefferies price target is higher than the consensus target of $92.24. The shares closed Friday at $69.62.

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While these are not momentum aggressive stock picks, they are somewhat more aggressive than mega-cap blue chips. All these companies have solid business lines and may offer risk-tolerant investors some big upside.

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