Despite cries of “overbought,” “correction due,” and of course, the ultimate acid producer, “markets are in a bubble,” for seven weeks stocks have risen on slightly increased volume and gradually increasing breadth.
As more stocks appreciate, the public’s disbelief grows. The sentiment numbers from the Association of Individual Investors (AAII) show a steady drop in bullishness. The number of investors surveyed that expect stock prices will rise over the next six months fell from 49.2% on Oct. 24 to 34.4% on Nov. 21. As might be expected, during the same time frame, bearish sentiment increased from 17.6% to 29.5%. Since the public is usually wrong, these reports are bullish for stocks.
My analysis indicates that there are more new highs to be made in December, since institutional investors usually load up on large-cap stocks before year-end. And this year, with blue chips lagging, a pattern of large-cap catch-up is even more likely. Thus, this month’s buy list is predominantly populated with stocks in this category.
Here are your top stocks to buy for December:
Top Stock to Buy #1 – Celgene (CELG)
Celgene (CELG) develops small-molecule drugs for the treatment of blood-borne and solid-tumor cancers and inflammatory diseases. The stock has been on the Trade of the Day buy list for over a year. On Jan. 9, at just above $91, I noted that S&P said it had “the brightest growth prospects among large-cap biotech companies.” And on March 18, at $111.25, I pointed out that it had broken from a cup-and-handle formation with a target of $125.
S&P has raised its target several times this year, recently boosting it to $188 from $172. Earnings per share are estimated to be $5.36 this year and $6.54 in 2014.
Technically, the stock is in a powerful bull channel with support roughly at its 50-day moving average. Early in November, it briefly dipped to its bullish support line, where it triggered a buy signal from my proprietary internal indicator, the Collins-Bollinger Reversal (CBR).
CELG can be volatile, and so even though my trading target is $180, I would prefer to buy it under $155. Aggressive traders could buy now with a trailing stop-loss order. Long-term investors can take a partial position now and add to it in the event of a pullback.
Top Stock to Buy #2 – Proctor & Gamble (PG)
Blue-chip Proctor & Gamble (PG) makes some of the most trusted household brands and markets products in more than 180 countries. Management recently reaffirmed its fiscal 2014 outlook and said it expects buybacks of $5 billion to $7 billion.
Earlier this year, the company increased its dividend by 7%, the 57th consecutive year it has had a dividend increase. The stock currently yields 2.8%.
A six-month consolidation ended early in November with a quadruple-top breakout. Accumulation has been high. Initial support is at the breakout point at about $82.50. Note a bullish MACD and the arching of the 50-day moving average from the 200-day moving average, another bullish indication. My target for PG is $94.
Top Stock to Buy #3 – Qualcomm (QCOM)
Qualcomm (QCOM) was included on my list of Top Stocks to Buy for October, when it was trading below $69, as a bargain that offered a good chance for a quick recovery. I last reviewed the stock on Nov. 15.
The company is a leader in developing products and services based on its advanced wireless broadband technology. It expects solid chipset sales throughout the coming year, and it is believed its Snapdragon chipset will provide an advantage in the wireless area over competitors. It has a strong royalty base in markets like China, which are converting from 2G to 3G.
Since the October report, the consensus EPS estimate for fiscal year (FY) 2013, ended in September, has been raised to $5.08 from $4.95. And FY 2014 estimates have been increased to $5.56 from $5.33. S&P reiterated its “five-star strong buy rating” and raised its 12-month price target to $90 from $85.
I have noted in the past that QCOM’s high-volume sell-offs, like that of April, have usually led to rebounds, and that is exactly what happened. The overall pattern has now evolved into one of the most rewarding formations — the cup and handle.
The mid-November break to a new high is a buy signal, and it was accompanied by a buy from the MACD indicator. Buy QCOM at the current price with a trading objective of $80. As a long-term hold, investors could see the stock trade north of $100.
Top Stock to Buy #4 – SanDisk (SNDK)
Consensus estimates for 2013 are for $5.19 per share and $5.81 for 2014. Analysts’ mean target is $ 74.40.
SNDK has tracked a 10-point-wide bull channel for all of 2013 with a current bullish support line defined by its 200-day moving average, now at $59. The CBR indicator flashed a buy signal at over $65, and with MACD currently oversold, a bounce could occur at any time. SNDK is a buy with a target of $75.
Top Stock to Buy #5 – Teledyne Technologies (TDY)
Teledyne Technologies (TDY) is a provider of sophisticated electronic subsystems and instrumentation for aerospace, military, marine and environmental applications. Management projects that earnings for 2013 will be in the range of $4.64-$4.67, and insiders have been on-balance buyers over the past 12 months. Analysts’ consensus estimates are for earnings per share of $4.65 in 2013 and $5.03 in 2014. The median target for the stock is $100.
TDY is in a bull channel supported by its 50-day moving average, which is arching up. The stock issued a new MACD buy signal on Nov. 22, is under heavy accumulation, and appears capable of breaking through the bullish resistance at the top of its bull channel.
The technical target for TDY is $100-plus. Traders should consider a stop-loss at $86.
Top Stock to Buy #6 – Yahoo (YHOO)
Yahoo (YHOO) is one of the world’s largest providers of content and services. I recommended it in the Top Stocks to Buy for May at under $24 with a six-month target of $30, mentioning that its investment in Asian companies could add to future earnings.
On July 18, at close to $30, I suggested that traders who bought the stock at $24 should consider taking profits but that investors should continue to hold.
Analysts’ consensus estimates are for earnings of $1.46 for 2013 and $1.66 in 2014. At 22 times next year’s earnings, the current price may appear rich; however, a recently announced share-buyback plan of $5 billion reduces the number of shares outstanding, thereby potentially increasing earnings per share. Yahoo last announced a $5 billion buyback in May 2012, when the stock was just $22 a share. Support is currently at its 50-day moving average at $33. Buy and hold YHOO for long-term appreciation.