Although summer isn’t officially here yet (the first day of summer is on Monday, June 20 this year), there’s little doubt that the summer doldrums are already upon us. The market is going nowhere, trading volume is strangely thin and most people are easily distracted by thoughts of golf, vacations and baseball.
And perhaps that’s as it should be. The months of May, June, July and August are notoriously slow for stock, on an individual basis as well as in terms of the entire four-month span. Since 1950, the S&P 500 has only gained an average of 1.0% during those four months.
This time of year is even more lethargic for tech stocks. Since its inception in 2002, the iShares Global Tech ETF (IXN) has actually lost just a tad of its value, on average, between the end of April and the beginning of September. This year, tech stocks aren’t setting up to do things much differently for the coming four months.
Yet, there are still some tech stocks to buy now — this month — even in the face of what’s likely to be a slow patch for the market as a whole as well as the sector.
Here’s a closer look at the top three tech stocks that may end up surprising many traders come late August.
Best Tech Stocks to Buy Before Summer Starts: Intel Corporation (INTC)
While Intel Corporation (INTC) may have once been “the” name in computer processors, it has struggled of late, and it has been conspicuously irrelevant on the tablet and smartphone scene. However, after a lot of time and effort, Intel is starting to penetrate deeper into the key chip market.
The likely revenue from the deal won’t make INTC one of the top tech stocks to buy on its own. What will start driving Intel shares higher though — by virtue of new revenue — is the tacit endorsement Apple just gave at least some of Intel’s mobile technology. The revenue stemming from that added credibility will start to materialize later this year.
This is not bad for a stock with a plausible forward-looking price-to-earnings ratio of only 13.4.
Best Tech Stocks to Buy Before Summer Starts: Integrated Device Technology Inc (IDTI)
Those who know Integrated Device Technology Inc (IDTI) well will know it’s superficially at risk of waning demand for smartphones and tablets. The company makes sensors, clocks and RF products for electronic devices, but with Gartner forecasting that smartphone sales will only grow 7% this year, the environment doesn’t look encouraging.
Thing is, that market is only a small sliver of what IDTI does. In fact, it also supplies the automotive market, telecom service providers and server-management products just to name a few; its diversification alone quietly makes Integrated Device Technology one of the more diversified tech stocks to buy.
The kicker: Not that smartwatches and other wearables haven’t been cast into a questionable light, but they’re still around and selling well. And if IDTI has anything to say about it, they’re about to get a whole lot better too.
Last month, the company unveiled technology that takes wireless charging of these devices to the proverbial next level. Developers are just now starting to get their hands on the technology, which should be integrated into the next generation of wearables.
Best Tech Stocks to Buy Before Summer Starts: salesforce.com, inc. (CRM)
Last but not least, I put salesforce.com, inc. (CRM) on this list of tech stocks to buy sooner than later, but not for the reason you might guess.
This week’s big news from the technology sector was the announced acquisition of LinkedIn Corp (LNKD) by Microsoft Corporation (MSFT) for a hefty $26.2 billion … all cash. Savvy, forward-thinking investors should be thinking about what the sweet offer really means though. That is to say, we could be on the verge of a proverbial land-grab in the social networking space. That’s largely why Twitter Inc (TWTR) shares jumped on the news — it was figured to be the next best buyout target.
Twitter may not be the next name to be acquired, however. Remember, salesforce.com has been a rumored buyout target for a while now, and that pot was stirred again this week with Oracle Corporation (ORCL) pegged as the potential suitor.
It certainly makes more sense than a Twitter buyout. Like LinkedIn, salesorce.com at least has a semi-reliable revenue model, and doesn’t rely on ad sales to finicky consumers. Even without an acquisition though, the company boasts consistent growth and a swing to a profit last quarter.
As of this writing, James Brumley did not hold a position in any of the aforementioned securities.