It’s interesting how nobody becomes risk averse until they see 1,000+ point declines in venerable indexes like the Dow Jones industrial average. Although years of abnormally low volatility has lulled many investors into a nonrisk coma, as we have seen over the past couple of weeks, things can change fast. That said, the prospects for the U.S. economy are extremely good, and while interest rates will move higher, they will remain low on a historical measure.
In a set of new SunTrust Robinson Humphrey research reports, the analysts have screened their coverage universe of stocks for companies they have the most and least confidence in a prolonged period of volatility, and they also have a group of snapback candidates to consider if the selling ends.
We like the snapback stocks, as many have corrected too far and would offer some fantastic opportunity if things settle down. Here we feature four that look like outstanding picks, not only for the short term but looking out as well.
This off-the-radar choice has solid upside potential from current levels and is a top mid-cap pick at SunTrust. AES Corp. (NYSE: AES) owns and operates power plants to generate and sell power to customers, such as utilities, industrial users and other intermediaries. The company also owns and operates utilities to generate or purchase, distribute, transmit and sell electricity to end-user customers in the residential, commercial, industrial and governmental sectors. It also generates and sells electricity to the wholesale market.
AES uses a range of fuels to generate electricity, including natural gas, coal, hydro, wind, energy storage, oil, diesel, petroleum coke, biomass, landfill gas and solar. The company owns and operates a generation portfolio of approximately 29,352 megawatts. It has operations in the United States, Chile, Colombia, Argentina, Brazil, Mexico, Central America, the Caribbean, Europe and Asia.
Shareholders receive a large 5.06% dividend. The SunTrust price objective for the shares is $15, and the Wall Street consensus target is $12.66. Shares closed on Monday at $10.27.
Enterprise Products Partners
This is one of the largest publicly traded partnerships and a leading North American provider of midstream energy services to producers and consumers. Enterprise Products Partners L.P. (NYSE: EPD) provides a wide variety of midstream energy services, including gathering, processing, transportation and storage of natural gas, natural gas liquids (NGLs) fractionation, import and export terminaling, and offshore production platform services.
One reason why many analysts may like the stock might be its distribution coverage ratio. That ratio is well above one-times, making it relatively less risky in its sector. The company’s distributions have grown for several quarters, and last year Enterprise Products announced that the board of directors of its general partner declared an increase in the quarterly cash distribution paid to partners to $0.4225 per common unit, or $1.70 on an annualized basis.
Investors receive a 6.34% distribution. The $29 SunTrust price target is less than the $31.83 consensus target. Shares closed Monday at $26.81.
This is one of the larger capitalization companies in the data center industry. Equinix Inc. (NASDAQ: EQIX) provides data center services to protect and connect the information assets for the enterprises, financial services companies, and content and network providers primarily in the Americas, Europe, the Middle East, Africa and the Asia-Pacific.
The company provides colocation services and related offerings, including operations space, storage space, cabinets and power for customers colocation needs; interconnection services, comprising physical cross connect/direct interconnections, Equinix Internet Exchange, Equinix Cloud Exchange, Equinix Metro Connect and Internet connectivity services; and managed IT infrastructure services, including installation of customer equipment and cabling, as well as equipment rebooting and power cycling, card swapping and emergency equipment replacement services.
Investors receive a 1.9% distribution. SunTrust recently lifted its target price to $575 from $530. The consensus price objective is $526.52, and shares closed Monday at $431.45.
Extraction Oil and Gas
The SunTrust team is also very positive on this smaller cap company. Extraction Oil and Gas LLC (NYSE: XOG) is focused on the acquisition, development and production of oil, natural gas and NGL reserves in the Rocky Mountains, primarily in the Wattenberg Field of the Denver-Julesburg Basin of Colorado.
The company offers its exploration and production processes in various steps, such as seismic, site preparation, drilling the well, completing the well, monitoring the well and reclaiming the site. Extraction utilizes sound walls to mute or redirect noise caused by its operations, and it uses an electric rig to manage its drilling operations.
Extraction Oil and Gas uses vapor recovery units to capture emissions from storage facilities. Lastly, it uses lease automatic custody transfer units to collect oil from tanks in a closed-loop system that manages air emissions associated with the oil-gathering and transportation process.
SunTrust has a $21 price target, and the consensus target is $20.66. The stock closed Monday at $12.63.
How long the stock volatility goes on is anybody’s guess, but we certainly are not in a recession, and one seems unlikely this year. Economic growth and earnings are on the upswing, so having some cash ready to invest makes good sense despite the roller-coaster ride the markets have been on.