Wednesday, July 24, 2024

3 Incredible FAANG Stocks You’ll Want to Consider Adding to Your Portfolio in July


It’s been a while since the term “FAANG stocks” captured investors’ attention, mostly because these stocks aren’t the red-hot names they used to be. The so-called “Magnificent Seven” tickers have taken their place as the market’s hot-button grouping.

The thing is, all five FAANG stocks are still incredible investments, and three of them are standout prospects you’ll want to consider adding to your portfolio sooner rather than later.

1. Amazon

Most investors know Amazon (NASDAQ: AMZN) has (literally) been the market’s most rewarding stock over the past three decades; shares are up more than 260,000% since their 1997 initial public offering. Most investors also understand, however, that the e-commerce giant’s highest-growth days are in the past. It’s simply too big now to continue growing at its historical pace.

That doesn’t mean its future isn’t bright, however. It’s just different in a handful of compelling ways.

One of these ways is a relatively new, intense focus on profitability. Although the company has historically been more interested in expanding its footprint than turning a profit, for the past couple of years it’s been closing and canceling warehouses that couldn’t operate as cost-effectively as needed. It’s streamlining all of its operations to cull costs.

And it’s working! While its first-quarter top line improved 13% year over year, operating income more than tripled. Notably, its international e-commerce operation swung from a regular loss to an operating profit of $900 million. That’s the best this arm’s done since early 2021 when the COVID-19 pandemic was in full swing.

Amazon is becoming a far more profitable company than it's been in the past.

Data source: Amazon Chart by author. Figures are in billions.

Amazon’s cloud computing arm, Amazon Web Services, is also firing on all cylinders, bouncing back from soaring operating expenses seen in late 2022 and 2023. Its first-quarter operating income of $9.4 billion is record-breaking and continues to improve. Look for more of the same, too. Mordor Intelligence believes the cloud market is poised to grow at an average annual pace of more than 16% through 2029.

Amazon’s newest business is on a roll as well. That’s advertising. Amazon.com’s third-party sellers forked over $11.8 billion to more prominently feature their products at the website, up 24% year over year.

Amazon shares are already up more than 130% since early last year, reaching new records just last week. Given the profit growth in the near-term and long-term cards though, there’s more upside ahead for this FAANG stock.

2. Netflix

It would be easy to assume the worst for streaming powerhouse Netflix (NASDAQ: NFLX). Suspiciously, after a clear slowdown in its customer growth, beginning next year the company will no longer disclose its subscriber numbers. The streaming market itself is also running into a saturation headwind, forcing its leading companies to partner up with peers and competitors to create more marketable bundles. Cable giant Comcast recently unveiled a cable TV package that included Netflix and Apple TV, for example, while Walt Disney and Warner Bros. Discovery are pairing up Disney+, Max, and Hulu in a bundle that will be priced at a discount and launched sometime this summer.

Just because the crowded industry’s maturing, however, doesn’t mean Netflix is doomed. It’s got a couple of key things working in its favor that could — and should — keep the stock’s current rally going. One of them is the company’s position within the streaming market.

See, it’s not just the original name in the business that gave rise to all the others. It’s also still the most popular and “stickiest” streaming platform. Nearly 270 million households pay for access to its content … far more than any of its rivals. Meanwhile, streaming market research house Antenna reports Netflix’s customer churn rate stands at only 2%, versus more than 4% for Disney+ and over 6% for Max, for perspective. For most U.S. households that pay for multiple streaming services, a “Netflix-first and then the others” kind of mindset still prevails. Habits are powerful.

The other matter working in Netflix’s favor is the rise of ad-supported streaming services. While only about 40 million of its 270 million subscribers (roughly 15%) are paying a lower monthly price in exchange for watching the occasional television commercial, it’s an option that will keep its service far more marketable for far longer than it might otherwise have been. Market research outfit Global Market Insight believes the ad-supported streaming market is set to grow at an annualized rate of more than 8% through 2032.

3. Apple

Last but not least, add Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL) to your list of FAANG stocks to consider buying before the end of July.

It’s not necessarily an easy name to get excited about owning right now. Although the stock was a must-have for years following 2007’s debut of the iPhone, slowing iPhone sales — which account for about half of Apple’s revenue — have prompted worries regarding its future growth.

There’s a huge new growth catalyst already at work though. That’s artificial intelligence.

While there’s no denying the company was late to the party, it’s catching up quickly. Last month Apple unveiled several different AI features for its smartphones, tablets, and computers that will make its wares even more powerful technology (particularly as it pertains to generative artificial intelligence). As Oppenheimer analyst Martin Yang writes, “Apple’s introduction of Apple Intelligence will position the company as the leader in the consumer AI experience.”

It’s not just Apple’s consumer-facing artificial intelligence apps that hold so much promise, however. The company’s also working on tech that most consumers will never actually see in action firsthand. For instance, it’s working on the development of its own chips for use in AI data centers. Although Nvidia‘s dominance of this market isn’t in any immediate danger, The Wall Street Journal reports that these chips could be based on a completely different sort of artificial intelligence called inference rather than the training-oriented architecture that’s common right now.

It remains to be seen exactly what Apple’s AI future looks like. But, Apple’s got a long history of success. Given Precedence Research’s prediction that the worldwide AI market is set to grow an average of 19% through 2032 there’s little doubt the company will win at least its fair share of the market’s expansion.

Should you invest $1,000 in Apple right now?

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John Mackey, former CEO of Whole Foods Market, an Amazon subsidiary, is a member of The Motley Fool’s board of directors. James Brumley has positions in Warner Bros. Discovery. The Motley Fool has positions in and recommends Amazon, Apple, Netflix, Nvidia, Walt Disney, and Warner Bros. Discovery. The Motley Fool recommends Comcast. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

3 Incredible FAANG Stocks You’ll Want to Consider Adding to Your Portfolio in July was originally published by The Motley Fool



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