Despite the novel coronavirus pandemic, 2020 was a strong year for stocks, and some new growth stocks in particular. The March meltdown may have caused some investors’ ulcers to flare up. However, it paved the way for major indices such as the Nasdaq and S&P 500 to hit new all-time highs in the months that followed.
So-called “stay at home” stocks such as Zoom Video (NASDAQ:ZM) and Peloton (NASDAQ:PTON) each rose more than 400%, while technology leaders such as Apple (NASDAQ:APPL) and Nvidia (NASDAQ:NVDA) saw their share prices more than double on the year. So where is the growth in 2021 likely to come from? Will these stocks continue to be all-stars or will other growth stocks steal the spotlight?
Many investors are betting on the “reopening play” as more people get vaccinated against Covid-19 and the U.S. economy reopens in earnest. Others are betting on a continued shift of capital into cyclical stocks. But whatever happens not all growth stocks are created equal heading into 2021. With that in mind, here are four growth stocks that could double in the next 12 months:
Growth Stocks That Should Double: Coty (COTY)
At $7 a share, COTY stock is barely out of penny stock range. But despite its relatively cheap valuation, shares of the beauty retailer that specializes in fragrances, cosmetics, skin care and nail care have been rising sharply in recent months. In one five-day trading session at the end of November, Coty’s share price rose 48%. Since Oct. 1, the stock has risen 145%.
The impressive growth has been spurred by a better-than-expected earnings report that reinforced the company’s turnaround effort is succeeding. An announcement that Coty would complete the sale of its Wella professional hair care business to KKR (NYSE:KKR) also gave the share price a lift.
Specifically, Coty reported a surprise profit for its fiscal first quarter, announced on Nov. 4. The company posted adjusted earnings per share of 11 cents, compared to the 5 cents-per-share loss analysts had forecasted. The surprise profit was also a vote of confidence in Coty’s new Chief Executive Officer, Sue Nabi, who is the company’s third CEO in a year.
Wall Street is now hopeful that Sue Nabi is taking Coty in the right direction after several failed turnaround attempts for the cosmetics company that has been in business since 1904. COTY stock got a further boost when it was announced that a 60% stake it had in Wella would be sold to KKR for $2.5 billion by the end of November. Coty will retain the remaining 40% stake it has in Wella and has said that it plans to “use $2 billion of the proceeds to pay down debt.” All of these steps position Coty for continued success in 2021.
With the widespread distribution of a Covid-19 vaccine, sports should really comeback in 2021. We’re talking about all sports — college football, March Madness, the Olympics and so on. Professional basketball, baseball, football and hockey should welcome fans back to stadiums and resume their regular schedules. And it all bodes well for sports betting operator Draftkings.
The company, which went public via a special acquisition deal (SPAC) in June 2020, has seen its share price rise 29% in the past six months to $53.90. But this past year has been extremely difficult on the world of sports and Draftkings’ core business of betting on sports. Many of Draftkings’ most lucrative sports events, such as March Madness, were cancelled this past year. That thrust DKNG stock’s future into question, but it has managed to stay strong this year regardless.
In 2021, DKNG stock should do much better. Not only will most major sporting events resume as normal in the New Year, but there are growing expectations that more U.S. states will legalize sports betting in coming months. Analysts at Oppenheimer recently noted that many states face revenue shortfalls due to the Covid-19 pandemic, and, as budget deficits swell, they may turn to sports betting as a new revenue source. Oppenheimer expects New York, Massachusetts, Connecticut and Ohio to legalize sports betting in the coming year. That would certainly help lift DKNG stock to new heights.
Despite its spotty roll out to date, 5G wireless is here and will become the dominant form of connectivity moving forward. And several companies are positioned to capitalize on the 5G revolution that is expected to take society into new technological realms.
Qualcomm is one of the companies that will most likely reap rewards from 5G. The semiconductor and software manufacturer is benefiting from the use of its microchips in various 5G wireless technologies and platforms. In particular, Qualcomm chips are being inserted into a growing number of 5G Android cell phones. Qualcomm isn’t just at the forefront of the 5G revolution, it is making the 5G revolution possible.
The massive potential of 5G is reflected in the growth of QCOM stock. Qualcomm’s share price has more than doubled since March 2020, up 144% at $147.42 a share. And analysts see big things ahead for the stock. Morgan Stanley named Qualcomm as one of 10 stocks best positioned to benefit from the global 5G roll out. Other analysts that cover the company have a median price target of $165 a share on Qualcomm’s stock, with a high estimate of $200.
Given the continued roll out and adoption of 5G networks and technologies around the world, the coming year looks very bright for Qualcomm and its shareholders.
Not only is UPS still benefitting from people ordering online while sheltering at home, but the delivery and logistics company is also poised to reap benefits from the massive roll out of Covid-19 vaccines across the United States and around the world. This is the time for companies such as UPS to shine, and the Atlanta, Georgia-based company is doing just that.
UPS is ramping up its operations and working double time to meet unprecedented demand and help all of us get through the global pandemic. These efforts have helped UPS stock reach new highs, up 113% since March at $175.18 a share.
Heading into 2021, UPS has momentum on its side. The company saw strong gains in its third quarter earnings. Specifically, the company’s revenue grew by 16% year-over-year to $21.2 billion and its earnings per share were up 10% at $2.28 a share. This beat analyst expectations for EPS of $1.90 a share. While UPS declined to provide forward guidance on its earnings, the company has aggressively expanded its North American operations throughout 2020.
In Canada, for example, UPS has opened a new $800 million package sorting and delivery hub. The company has also hired more than 5,000 employees amid the pandemic. As such, the company shows no signs of slowing down heading into the New Year.
On the date of publication, Joel Baglole held long positions in APPL and NVDA.
Joel Baglole has been a business journalist for 20 years. He spent five years as a staff reporter at The Wall Street Journal, and has also written for The Washington Post and Toronto Star newspapers, as well as financial websites such as The Motley Fool and Investopedia.