More Room To Run: 3 Stocks to Buy at 52-Week Highs


  • The markets’ momentum has slowed in recent weeks. That’s reduced the number of stocks at 52-week highs. Here are three to consider:
  • TJX Companies (TJX): Given its financial performance, its stock deserves better.
  • Emcor Group (EME): Infrastructure construction is its reason for being.
  • Bellring Brands (BRBR): It’s a winning spinoff.
Stocks at 52-Week Highs - More Room To Run: 3 Stocks to Buy at 52-Week Highs

Source: Chompoo Suriyo /

I’m sure it won’t surprise anyone that Nvidia (NASDAQ:NVDA) continues to test 52-week highs. As stocks to buy go, the chipmaker remains on most investors’ watch lists despite hitting an all-time high of $502.66 on Aug. 24 after announcing killer earnings.

Nvidia is having considerable success in 2023 — NVDA stock is up 229% year-to-date — but only 22 S&P 500 stocks are trading within 3% of their 52-week highs. If you broaden the search to stocks with market capitalizations of $2 billion or more and trading on the NYSE, the number jumps to 51, but that’s still not a huge number out of 1,221 companies.

The S&P 500 was on fire through the end of July. However, August has brought momentum to a crashing halt. That’s not surprising. 

August is a terrible month for stocks. According to reporting from CNBC, the index in August over the past decade has averaged a return of just 0.1%, which makes it the third worst-performing month of the year over the past decade.

A month ago, my choices would have been plentiful. Now, not so much.

To make things interesting, I’ll select at least one $2 billion-plus market cap outside the index within 3% of a 52-week high and one doing the same from the index.

TJX Companies (TJX)

An outside shot of a T.J. Maxx (TJX) store in Romeoville, Illinois.
Source: Joe Hendrickson /

TJX Companies (NYSE:TJX) is the largest of the three companies on this list, with a market cap of nearly $102 billion. It’s also an S&P 500 constituent. 

TJX is up 12.4% YTD and 61.5% over the past five years, 20% higher than the index. Its 52-week high is $90.30.

The off-price retailer’s banners include T.J. Maxx, Marshalls, HomeGoods, Sierra, Winners, HomeSense, and T.K. Maxx, which reported healthy Q2 2024 results on Aug. 16. 

Highlights include:

  • 6% same-store sales increase in the quarter, above the company’s estimate.
  • A 10.4% pre-tax profit margin, 120 basis points higher than a year ago and well ahead of its estimate.
  • A 23% increase in earnings per share, to 85 cents. 

“Our overall comp sales growth was driven by customer traffic, which increased at every division. It was terrific to see Marmaxx, our largest division, drive an 8% comp sales increase,” stated CEO Ernie Herrman in its Q2 2024 press release. 

As a result of the strong quarter, it raised its same-store sales growth estimate for 2024 to 3.5% at the midpoint of its guidance. It also increased its pre-tax profit margin to 10.75% and EPS to $3.69.

Based on its EPS estimate, its shares trade at 24.0x its expected earnings. Given the strength of its business, that’s not overpaying.

Emcor Group (EME)

neon pink and blue graphic of a lightning bolt

Emcor Group (NYSE:EME) is the second-largest of the three companies on this list, with a market cap of $10.3 billion. It’s not an S&P 500 constituent.

EME is up 48.4% YTD and 174.8% over the past five years, 3.4x higher than the index. Its 52-week high is $223.49. It’s also the construction company’s all-time high.

My wife works in the construction industry, so I couldn’t resist including Emcor on my list.

Emcor is a Fortune 500 company. In 2022, it had revenue of $11.1 billion, 12.1% higher than in 2021 and 37.0% higher than in 2018. It took a slight step back in 2020 due to the pandemic. On the bottom line, it earned $8.10 a share, 14.7% higher than in 2021 and 65.6% higher than in 2018.

It’s got lots of work to complete. It finished 2022 with $7.5 billion in remaining performance obligations (RPOs), up from $4.6 billion in 2020.

Of the $7.5 billion, approximately 58% will be completed by its U.S. Mechanical Construction and Facilities Services business, another 22% by its U.S. Electrical construction and Facilities Services business, with the remaining 20% from its Building and Industrial Services segments, and a tiny sliver from its UK Building Services business.

In Q2 2023, it reported record revenues and earnings. It’s carried on in 2023, right where it left off. I like this business a lot.

Bellring Brands (BRBR)

A photo of the brands Bell ring (BRBR) logo on a Building
Source: rblfmr /

Bellring Brands (NYSE:BRBR) is the smallest of the three companies on this list, with a market cap of $5.3 billion. It’s not an S&P 500 constituent.

BRBR is up 58.8% YTD and 65.4% over the past five years, nearly 14 percentage points higher than the index. Its 52-week high is $41.07.

Bellring is a leader in the convenient nutrition category. Its brands include Premier Protein, Dymatize, and PowerBar. Post Holdings (NYSE:POST) spun the company off in March 2022. Post Holdings’ shareholders received 1.268 shares of BellRing stock for every share of Post.

On Aug. 7, it reported Q3 2023 results. They were so good that it raised its outlook for the rest of the year.

On the top line, it had net sales of $445.9 million in the third quarter, 20.3% higher than a year earlier. Both volume and prices were higher in the quarter. As a result of the strong sales, its operating profit in the quarter was 12.6% higher than Q3 2022 at $76.0 million.

In 2023, it expects net sales of $1.65 billion (20.5% YOY growth) at the midpoint of its guidance, with adjusted EBITDA of $334 million (23.5% YOY growth).

Analysts love Bellring stock. Of the 15 covering it, 14 rate it a Buy, with one Overweight. The median target price is $44, about 10% higher than where it’s currently trading.

On the date of publication, Will Ashworth 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 Publishing Guidelines.

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