The prospect of interest rates staying high for longer than previously expected may have you worried that shares in the tech giant could move lower, because of valuation concerns.
Even if you think the market has fully absorbed the prospect of a “higher for longer” environment, there are other factors.
For instance, there’s renewed attention toward a key company-related risk that may have you concerned about continuing to hold this high-quality tech name in your portfolio.
However, while many challenges have cropped up recently, there’s no need to head for the hills just yet.
While the next big rally may take time to take shape, there’s much in play that could help keep this stock resilient, irrespective of whether the market experiences more volatility.
GOOG Stock: Dismantling Valuation Concerns
Last week, I discussed why “higher for longer” may not be as big of risk for Alphabet shares as some may think. Even with interest rates not coming back as soon as once expected, the stock may sustain its current valuation (23.4 times estimated 2023 earnings).
A combination of factors points to strong earnings growth over the next few years. including AI innovation, cost reductions, and a rebound in the company’s existing lines of business.
Barring a sharp walk-back of guidance, the prospect of this growth stands to keep GOOG stock level (at the very least).
That’s not all. Even before the Federal Reserve begins reversing rate hikes, tech stock valuations could start climbing once again.
As Wedbush’s Dan Ives recently argued, many of the same factors that stand to boost Alphabet’s earnings in the coming year could serve as a “springboard for growth” into next year, outweighing the impact on valuation posed by “higher for longer.”
There’s a stronger case to be made that Alphabet will bounce back well before the Fed starts changing its tune on interest rates, rather than keep sliding lower as high rates persist.
Why Antitrust Fears are Misplaced
So, we’ve dismantled valuation worries. Now, let’s look at the other thing raising concern among some GOOG stock investors. I’m talking about the biggest company-related risk on the minds of the market right now: antitrust scrutiny.
As you likely know, the tech giant is contending with antitrust litigation from the U.S. Department of Justice (or DOJ).
The DOJ alleges that the company engaged in anticompetitive practices, in order to maintain search market dominance.
It is far too early to say whether Alphabet has a shot of beating this case. Or, if the company will lose/need to settle. However, as InvestorPlace’s Thomas Niel recently pointed out, one sell-side analyst believes losing this case would be anything but a “game over” moment.
In fact, according to this analyst (JPMorgan’s Doug Anmuth), the company could actually “win” from being unable to keep paying smartphone companies for search exclusivity.
According to Anmuth, ending such practices would save Alphabet billions of dollars per year, all while having little impact on Google’s dominance in the search space.
In short, much like the valuation fears are an overreaction, antitrust fears with Alphabet are misplaced.
The Best Move Now
Anmuth’s “winning by losing” argument makes sense. Even if the DOJ litigation results in ending some of the company’s more controversial search distribution practices, it’s not as if Google’s search market share is going to evaporate overnight.
Alphabet could plow the cost savings into its own AI platform, Bard. Quickly playing AI catchup would go a long way at keeping the competitive threat posed by Bing at bay.
As I argued last week, given the many signs of near-term resilience, and a path to continued gains as current uncertainties resolve, if you currently own GOOG stock, feel free to maintain a position.
GOOG stock earns a B rating in Portfolio Grader.
On the date of publication, neither Louis Navellier nor the InvestorPlace Research Staff member primarily responsible for this article held (either directly or indirectly) any positions in the securities mentioned in this article.