SPECIAL REPORT The Top 7 Stocks for 2024

The 7 Best Oil Stocks To Buy Now: October 2023

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  • ConocoPhillips (COP): A multinational in hydrocarbon exploration, COP boasts stable growth with strong revenue rates.
  • Exxon Mobil (XOM): With a Rockefeller legacy, XOM provides consistent profitability and a longstanding dividend history.
  • Enbridge (ENB): Enbridge’s vast pipeline infrastructure holds potential, though market sentiment is mixed.
  • Read more about the top oil stocks to buy and hold now!
Best Oil Stocks - The 7 Best Oil Stocks To Buy Now: October 2023

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With the market continuing to print rather unimpressive performances, investors may want to consider the best oil stocks to buy. Simply put, cynicism may be the name of the game. Basically, you’ve got to make do with a less-than-ideal situation and hydrocarbon energy providers sell themselves.

For one thing, you have geopolitics working in your “favor,” if I can even say that. Yes, the world seems intent on implosion at this juncture. However, because of the flashpoints emerging, oil-producing nations are acting completely in their self-interest. Cynically, this framework should artificially limit supply and thereby boost demand.

Second, electric vehicles might not be the answer that many folks thought it once was. Yes, the transition is occurring at a rapid pace. However, for the bulk of American consumers, making the leap to EVs remains too expensive. Until this context changes, investors should be able to trust the below best oil stocks to buy.

ConocoPhillips (COP)

Image of an oil wells with a dark blue sky
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A multinational corporation engaged in hydrocarbon exploration and production, ConocoPhillips (NYSE:COP) offers a stable backdrop for investors seeking the best oil stocks. It’s not the most exciting idea nor does it provide the greatest upside potential. However, it’s built to march steadily higher as hydrocarbons again enjoy a surge of relevance.

Regarding the financials, COP trades with a forward earnings multiple of 11.89x. That’s noticeably higher than the sector median of 8.13x. However, for that higher premium, you’re getting a three-year revenue growth rate of 28.4%, above nearly 82% of its peers. Also, the company’s EBITDA growth rate during the same period impresses at 24.6%.

It prints a trailing-year net margin of 19.37%, above 74.67% of sector rivals. And while its forward yield of 1.63% isn’t especially generous, the payout ratio sits at a very sustainable 20.03%. Finally, analysts rate COP as a consensus strong buy with a $142.21 price target, implying nearly 14% upside.

Exxon Mobil (XOM)

Exxon Retail Gas Location
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One of the biggest multinational oil and gas firms, Exxon Mobil (NYSE:XOM) is a direct descendent of John D. Rockefeller’s Standard Oil. Just from pedigree alone, some folks might consider it among the best oil stocks to buy. Yes, the massive size and maturity of its business means you’re probably not going to enjoy the most outsized returns. But if you want to sleep easier at night, XOM is intriguing.

As with ConocoPhillips above, you’re not going to get a discount (in the traditional sense) with Exxon Mobil. Right now, shares trade at a forward multiple of 10.42x, which again is a bit higher than the 8.13x sector median value. However, for that added premium, you’ll benefit from a consistently profitable enterprise with a solid three-year revenue growth rate of 15.9%.

Also, the company facilitates a forward yield of 3.31%. Most notably, Exxon Mobil commands 40 years of dividend increases, reaffirming that stability. Lastly, analysts peg XOM as a moderate buy with a $127.59 target, implying over 16% growth.

Enbridge (ENB)

Enbridge (ENB) sign on the head Enbridge office in Toronto, Canada.
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A midstream energy specialist, Enbridge (NYSE:ENB) ranks among the best oil stocks to buy thanks to sheer relevance. Per its public profile, Enbridge owns and operates pipelines throughout Canada and the U.S. Through its infrastructural network – which covers tens of thousands of miles – the company transports crude oil, natural gas, and natural gas liquids.

However, a main drawback for ENB is that the market lacks belief in shares. Since the January opener, ENB slipped more than 16%. And even with the red ink in the charts, it’s still not enough to get Enbridge’s valuation to a more attractive level. Right now, shares trade at a forward multiple of 16.81X, which ranks worse than over 90% of its peers.

Still, the major positive for the midstream player is its consistent profitability. Also, if you trust the business and can overlook the sky-high payout ratio of nearly 130%, Enbridge offers a forward yield of 8.08%. Analysts are looking at ENB hitting $40.36, implying over 23% upside.

Pembina Pipeline (PBA)

miniature oil barrel and oil well figures on top of stack of money
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Another midstream services provider, Pembina Pipeline (NYSE:PBA) operates transportation and storage infrastructure. Per its corporate profile, Pembina delivers oil and natural gas to and from parts of Western Canada. As well, the company runs a natural gas processing business. With geopolitics again rearing its ugly head and economic dynamics forcing people to drive their combustion-powered cars, Pembina may have a cynically bright future.

Unfortunately, the risk factor here is that the market has other ideas. Since the beginning of the year, PBA lost almost 8% of its equity value. Still, it also seems that in recent sessions, a bottom may have been printed. On a financial note, PBA is still expensive, trading at a forward multiple of 13.38X. However, for that price, you get a strong three-year sales growth rate of 19.1%.

As well, Pembina is consistently profitable with solid margins. Therefore, it provides a forward yield of 6.44%, though you’ll have to stomach the payout ratio of 91.26%. Analysts rate PBA a moderate buy with a $36.44 target, implying almost 20% upside.

Phillips 66 (PSX)

Phillips 66 gas station in the daytime
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A downstream specialist, Philips 66 (NYSE:PSX) focuses on refining and marketing petrochemicals. In addition, it also provides transportation services. At first glance, the pain at the pump might seem to negatively affect the company via reduced incentives to drive. However, the harsh reality is that Phillips 66 and its ilk benefit from a captive audience.

Again, with EVs being priced too high for middle-income consumers, PSX enjoys tremendous relevance. Since the beginning of the year, shares gained over 9%, which isn’t all that impressive. However, should geopolitics and other outside factors continue to bite, Philips 66 might come out as one of the best oil stocks to buy. Notably, it’s also decently priced at 7.84x forward earnings.

Just as well, the company consistently prints net income. Therefore, the company offers a forward yield of 3.8% with a sustainable payout ratio of 31.47%. Analysts peg PSX as a moderate buy with a $133 target, implying over 20% growth.

Transocean (RIG)

An image of an offshore oil rig
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One of the riskiest ideas for the best oil stocks to buy, Transocean (NYSE:RIG) is the world’s largest offshore drilling contractor based on revenue. Though the company suffered some controversy in the past, that dark cloud has faded amid other controversies. This time, the ugly nature of geopolitical flashpoints provided RIG with a tailwind.

Since the beginning of this year, RIG gained over 78% of its equity value, leading many other hydrocarbon-related enterprises. As a result, it’s not the most enticing idea from a traditional valuation standpoint. Also, the Covid-19 crisis has done a number on Transocean, which is still in recovery mode. Notably, its long-term revenue growth sits in negative territory.

At the same time, hydrocarbon demand will probably continue to rise higher given the tough circumstances. So, if you have high conviction in this narrative, RIG might be worth a look. Also, analysts rate RIG a moderate buy with a $9.75 price target, projecting over 26% upside.

Riley Exploration Permian (REPX)

Illustration of oil pump jacks on sunset sky background to represent oil and gas stocks
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For investors looking to maximize their return potential among the best oil stocks, Riley Exploration Permian (NYSEAMERICAN:REPX) might be of interest. Riley focuses on capital efficiency and the steady growth of its reserves, production, and cash flow. It accomplishes this directive through the acquisition, exploration, and development of reserves within the Permian Basin.

Since the start of the year, REPX gained just a hair over 16% of its equity value. Interestingly, in the trailing five sessions, REPX moved up over 12%. On a financial note, investment data aggregator Gurufocus states that Riley is modestly undervalued based on its proprietary calculations for intrinsic value. Moreover, the company prints a very impressive three-year revenue growth rate of 43.5%, beating out 90.55% of its peers.

Also, it’s worth checking out the passive income, with Riley offering a forward yield of 4.55%. While it doesn’t have an extensive history of dividend increases, its payout ratio sits at 15.2%. Finally, Truist Financial’s Neal Dingmann rates REPX a buy with a $49 target, implying 55% growth.

On the date of publication, Josh Enomoto 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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