How to Find the Best Stocks in a Bear Market

In the volatile market we’re currently smack dab in the middle of, it’s difficult to know which stocks to buy, let alone keep track of all of them.

While some stocks’ fundamentals remain intact and shares are simply down with the broader market, others have been knocked down for a reason. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: While good stocks bounce like tennis balls, bad stocks fall like rocks. And the last thing you want is a rock burning a hole in your pocket when the stock market’s rally resumes.

That said, sometimes a good stock can go bad and vice versa. This is why I created my Weekly Upgrades & Downgrades blog post based on my Portfolio Grader ratings. Every week, I run a scan on nearly 5,000 stocks and pull together a list of blue chips, with at least a $10 billion market cap, to show you which among them were upgraded to buys and holds, or downgraded to holds and sells. Take Monday’s post, for example:

This Week’s Ratings Changes:

Upgraded: From Hold to Buy
Symbol Company Name Quantitative Grade Fundamental Grade Total
ANTM Anthem, Inc. B B B
BRK.B Berkshire Hathaway Inc. Class B B C B
CRH CRH Plc Sponsored ADR B C B
DB Deutsche Bank AG B C B
DFS Discover Financial Services B C B
DISCB Discovery, Inc. Class B B C B
EIX Edison International B C B
ESS Essex Property Trust, Inc. B C B
FITB Fifth Third Bancorp B B B
GE General Electric Company B C B
ILMN Illumina, Inc. B C B
INFY Infosys Limited Sponsored ADR C B B
ISRG Intuitive Surgical, Inc. B C B
KEY KeyCorp B C B
LOW Lowe’s Companies, Inc. B C B
MET MetLife, Inc. B C B
O Realty Income Corporation B B B
PPL PPL Corporation B C B
PUK Prudential plc Sponsored ADR B C B
SQ Square, Inc. Class A B B B
SRE Sempra Energy A D B
SYY Sysco Corporation B C B
TSN Tyson Foods, Inc. Class A B C B
VOD Vodafone Group Plc Sponsored ADR B C B
WPC W. P. Carey Inc. B C B


Upgraded: From Sell to Hold
Symbol Company Name Quantitative Grade Fundamental Grade Total
AFL Aflac Incorporated C C C
ANET Arista Networks, Inc. D B C
AVAL Grupo Aval Acciones y Valores SA C C C
BBL BHP Group Plc Sponsored ADR D C C
CHKP Check Point Software Technologies Ltd. D C C
DELL Dell Technologies Inc Class C C D C
DEO Diageo plc Sponsored ADR C C C
EC Ecopetrol SA Sponsored ADR D C C
HPE Hewlett Packard Enterprise Co. D B C
IAC IAC/InterActiveCorp. B C B
LYG Lloyds Banking Group D C C
LYV Live Nation Entertainment, Inc. B C C
MFG Mizuho Financial Group, Inc. D B C
MUFG Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group, Inc. C C C
QSR Restaurant Brands International Inc C C C
RBS Royal Bank of Scotland Group D C C
SYF Synchrony Financial C C C
TAK Takeda Pharmaceutical Co. Ltd. Sponsored ADR C C C
TOT Total SA Sponsored ADR Class B C C C
WIT Wipro Limited Sponsored ADR D B C
YUM Yum! Brands, Inc. C C C

Downgraded: From Buy to Hold
Symbol Company Name Quantitative Grade Fundamental Grade Total
BAC Bank of America Corp C C C
BDX Becton, Dickinson and Company C D C
BR Broadridge Financial Solutions, Inc. B D C
BTI British American Tobacco C C C
CHD Church & Dwight Co., Inc. C C C
COO Cooper Companies, Inc. B C C
DIS Walt Disney Company B C C
FMS Fresenius Medical Care AG & Co. C C C
FRC First Republic Bank C C C
LVS Las Vegas Sands Corp. D C C
MKC McCormick & Company, Incorporated C C C
MRK Merck & Co., Inc. C B C
ROL Rollins, Inc. C C C
RYAAY Ryanair Holdings Plc Sponsored ADR C C C
SJM J.M. Smucker Company C C C
STT State Street Corporation C B C
UL Unilever PLC Sponsored ADR C C C
UPS United Parcel Service, Inc. Class B B D C
VIV Telefonica Brasil S.A. Sponsored ADR Pfd C C C
VMC Vulcan Materials Company B C C
VZ Verizon Communications Inc. C B C
WCN Waste Connections, Inc. C C C
WM Waste Management, Inc. B C C


Downgraded: From Hold to Sell
Symbol Company Name Quantitative
CCEP Coca-Cola European Partners Plc D C D
DOW Dow, Inc. D C D
EMR Emerson Electric Co. D C D
ENIC Enel Chile SA Sponsored ADR D C D
FCAU Fiat Chrysler Automobiles N.V. D C D
GIB CGI Inc. Class A D C D
IP International Paper Company D D D
MAR Marriott International, Inc. Class A D C D
PPG PPG Industries, Inc. D C D
TCOM Group Ltd. Sponsored ADR F C D
TD Toronto-Dominion Bank D C D
VFC V.F. Corporation D C D
WBA Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc D C D


As you can see above, 84 stocks were upgraded or downgraded over the weekend. This includes companies like Lowe’s Companies, Inc. (NYSE:LOW), which was upgraded to a B-rated “Buy,” and Bank of America (NYSE:BAC), which was downgraded to a C-rated “Hold.” Chances are that you have at least one of these 84 stocks in your portfolio, whether directly or in fund shares.

But I understand if you don’t have time to check your stocks week-to-week, which is why I also have my Portfolio Grader 500. This is a quarterly guide to the best and worst stocks for the current quarter. It is my master list of 250 A- and B-rated powerhouses, plus 250- D and F-rated stocks to sell immediately. Each grade listed is a projection for the entire quarter.

The Portfolio Grader 500 features predominantly large-cap stocks that are either at the top of the heap (the stocks to buy) or at the bottom of the heap (the stocks to sell), according to my stock-picking system. This list is generated entirely using the information covered by my Portfolio Grader (namely the Quantitative Grade, and the eight parts that make up the Fundamental Grade.)

Let me give you an example ….

On January 2, I released my Portfolio Grader 500 for the first quarter. Alcoa Corporation (NYSE:AA) held an F-rating, making it a strong sell. In comparison, Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMD) was A-rated, making it a strong buy. Take a look at the chart below to see how they performed in the first quarter.

As you can see, AA lost 70%. That’s almost four times the damage sustained by the S&P 500, which is down 18.5% to end the quarter. On the other hand, AMD gained 4%, which is pretty impressive in the current bear market. Clearly, my projections were on to something!

If you don’t want to sort through 500 stocks each quarter — I’ve got you covered with my Platinum Growth Club Model Portfolio. I only recommend the crème de la crème of stocks, all of which are highly rated in Portfolio Grader. So, you can rest assured that you’re investing in the best of the best.

If you try us out now, you will receive my Portfolio Grader 500. And it’s perfect timing, as I will be publishing my latest top 250 stocks to buy and top 250 stocks to sell tomorrow morning. So, you’ll have plenty of time to adjust your portfolio for the second quarter, which is sure to be a wild one.

Plus, in Platinum Growth Club, I will be releasing the names of three new companies that are flashing the “buy” signal after the close tomorrow. These are set to benefit from the online boom in China right now. You don’t want to miss out.

With Platinum Growth Club, you’ll also have full access to my hand-picked Model Portfolio, plus my VIP chats. (I’ve also been recording podcasts constantly in this crazy market for subscribers to Platinum Growth Club and ALL my services.)

In addition, you’ll have access to all my other services — Growth InvestorBreakthrough Stocks and Accelerated Profits, as well as the Power Portfolio 2020 my InvestorPlace colleague Matt McCall and I created. If you sign on by midnight tonight, you can take part in our Open House and try Platinum Growth Club for 30 days, risk-free — at a steep discount.

Click here to learn all about Platinum Growth Club and how we find great stocks — even in the corners of the market you wouldn’t think to look.

Louis Navellier had an unconventional start, as a grad student who accidentally built a market-beating stock system — with returns rivaling even Warren Buffett. In his latest feat, Louis discovered the “Master Key” to profiting from the biggest tech revolution of this (or any) generation. Louis Navellier may hold some of the aforementioned securities in one or more of his newsletters.

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