The biggest names on the Street just stepped up to the earnings plate and some hit it out of the park. As a result, their share prices are celebrating with significant gains following those results. Below, we’re spotlighting three stocks to buy that have the earnings winds at their backs.
Today’s sharp sector rotation reveals the area hosting the best results: technology — specifically, mega-cap tech. For example, the Invesco QQQ Trust (NASDAQ:QQQ), which tracks the Nasdaq-100 index, is up 1.58% this week. Meanwhile, the S&P 500 index is flat and the small-cap-laden Russell 2000 index is down 2.6%.
The big winners this week all came courtesy of better-than-expected earnings. We’ll dig into the numbers and price responses, but first, let’s unveil the three stocks that are capturing my attention:
After reviewing their latest numbers and price charts, I’ll provide a bullish options trade idea to capitalize on.
3 Stocks To Buy That Are Winning on Earnings: Microsoft (MSFT)
Microsoft delivered the goods with its latest quarterly results. The tech titan saw revenue climb to $45.32 billion, exceeding analyst estimates of $43.97 billion. The juicy top-line number translated into nearly 22% of year-over-year growth. It also helped the company surpass earnings per share forecasts of $2.07 by posting $2.27.
On the price front, Microsoft just broke out of a two-month consolidation pattern. Volume is expanding as buyers swarm, lending legitimacy to the breakout attempt. $340 looks like a realistic target before year-end.
If the higher price tag is giving you pause, then the following call spread should interest you. It’s cheap.
The Trade: Buy the Dec $330/$340 bull call for $2.85.
You’re risking $2.85 for the chance to make $7.15 if MSFT rises to $340 by expiration.
Alphabet (GOOGL, GOOG)
Alphabet followed in Microsoft’s footsteps by beating on the top and bottom lines. Though the stock opened quietly with little change, bulls have been gobbling up shares all morning long. GOOGL stock is up 5% and pushing into record territory.
For the quarter, Alphabet revenue grew to $65.12 billion, easily surpassing estimates of $63.34 billion. Earnings per share was particularly impressive, coming in at $27.99 per share versus forecasts of $23.48.
Similar to MSFT, GOOGL stock has been stuck in a range for the past two months. The consolidation has allowed prices to digest the enormous gains scored this year. At the end of August, Google’s year-to-date gain stood at 65%. But, of course, this week’s numbers underscore the gains were well deserved.
I think today’s breakout has legs into year-end. So I’m going to echo the previous trade with another bull call idea.
The Trade: Buy the Dec $3,000/$3,050 bull call for $18.
You’re risking $18 to make $32 if GOOGL can climb past $3,050 by expiration.
3 Stocks To Buy That Are Winning on Earnings: Coca-Cola (KO)
Coca-Cola rounds out today’s trio of stocks to buy. It departs from the tech stock theme, yes, but I felt like the recent gap, and trend reversal deserved our attention.
The beverage giant reported third-quarter earnings and sales that topped estimates. Revenue came in at $10.04 billion versus $9.75 billion expected. Adjusted earnings per share was 65 cents versus 58 cents expected.
Heading into the number, KO stock was stuck in a downtrend below its 50-day moving average. Fortunately, the report was enough to bring buyers back, and prices opened up over 2%. The stock has fallen since the open, but with resistance zones shattered by the gap, I suspect any weakness will result in a higher pivot low over the coming days.
The lower volatility nature of Coca-Cola shares makes them a good candidate for diagonal call spreads, otherwise known as poor boy’s covered calls.
The Trade: Buy the Jan $52.50 call while selling the Nov $56 call for $2.85.
You’re risking $2.85 to make around $70 if KO sits above $56 at expiration.
On the date of publication, Tyler Craig did not have (either directly or indirectly) any positions in the securities mentioned in this article.. The opinions expressed in this article are those of the writer, subject to the InvestorPlace.com Publishing Guidelines.
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