Top Stocks for January 2022

Top Stocks

The Russell 1000 Index is a market-capitalization-weighted index of the 1,000 largest publicly traded companies in the United States. It represents approximately 92% of the total market capitalization (market cap) of all listed stocks in the U.S. equity market. For this reason, it is considered a bellwether for large-cap investing. Some of the largest companies in the index include Apple Inc. (AAPL), Johnson & Johnson (JNJ), and The Walt Disney Co. (DIS).

The Russell 1000 provided a total return of 25.5% over the past 12 months. This market performance number and all data below are as of Dec. 16, 2021.

Here are the top five stocks across all sectors with the best value, the fastest growth, and the most momentum.

Best Value Stocks

Value investing is a factor-based investing strategy that involves picking stocks that you believe are trading for less than what they are intrinsically worth, usually by measuring the ratio of the stock’s price to one or more fundamental business metrics. A widely accepted value metric is the price-to-earnings (P/E) ratio. Value investors believe that if a business is cheap compared to its intrinsic value (as measured by its P/E ratio, in this case), then the stock price may rise faster than that of others as the price comes back in line with the worth of the company.

These are among the stocks with the lowest 12-month trailing P/E ratio:

Best Value Stocks
Price ($) Market Cap ($B) 12-Month Trailing P/E Ratio
UWM Holdings Corp. (UWMC) 6.68 0.7 0.5
United States Steel Corp. (X) 23.45 6.3 2.1
Qurate Retail Inc. (QRTEA) 7.59 3.0 2.6
Sage Therapeutics Inc. (SAGE) 38.93 2.3 3.1
Bio-Rad Laboratories Inc. (BIO) 734.34 22.0 3.3

Source: YCharts

  • UWM Holdings Corp.: UWM Holdings operates as a wholesale mortgage lender. The company originates, sells, and services residential mortgage loans, including government loans, across the United States. UWM employs 8,600 people. In November, UWM Holdings announced the launch of MI Buster, a product that eliminates mortgage insurance (MI) for borrowers who put more than 10% down. Traditional MI requires a down payment of at least 20% to waive it. MI Buster is available for conventional purchase loans of $200,000 or more, as well as for certain high-balance loans.
  • United States Steel Corp.: United States Steel is a steel producer with operations in the United States and Central Europe. The company makes high value-added steel products, including its proprietary XG3 advanced high-strength steel. It serves the automotive, construction, appliance, energy, containers, and packaging industries. U.S. Steel has an annual raw steelmaking capability of 26.2 million net tons. The company announced on Dec. 9, 2021, that it has collaborated with transportation and industrial companies Norfolk Southern Corp. (NSC) and The Greenbrier Companies Inc. (GBX) to develop a lighter-weight, more energy-efficient gondola railcar. The new car’s unloaded weight has been reduced by up to 15,000 pounds. Gondola railcars are used to transport loose bulk material, including coils, wood chips, steel slabs, ore, and metal scraps.
  • Qurate Retail Inc.: Qurate Retail is an ecommerce services company that reaches 218 million homes and operates through seven retail brands: QVC, HSN, Zulily, Frontgate, Ballard Designs, Garnet Hill, and Grandin Road. It partners with television networks, ecommerce sites, streaming services, social pages, mobile apps, and print catalogs to provide video and digital commerce services.
  • Sage Therapeutics Inc.: Sage Therapeutics is a biopharmaceutical company that develops novel therapies for people with debilitating brain disorders. The company targets diseases and disorders of the brain within key areas such as depression, neurology, and neuropsychiatry. It markets Zulresso, a drug for treating postpartum depression, and has a number of drugs in its development pipeline. For the third quarter (Q3) of 2021, ended Sept. 30, 2021, the company reported widening net losses and a 12.1% year-over-year (YOY) decline in net product revenue. The company said that both research and development costs, as well as selling, general and administrative expenses, increased YOY.
  • Bio-Rad Laboratories Inc.: Bio-Rad Laboratories develops and manufactures a wide array of products for the life science research and clinical diagnostic markets. Its customers include university and research institutions, biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies, and applied laboratories. The company operates globally and employs roughly 7,800 people worldwide.

Fastest Growing Stocks

These are the top stocks as ranked by a growth model that scores companies based on a 50/50 weighting of their most recent quarterly YOY percentage revenue growth and their most recent quarterly YOY earnings per share (EPS) growth. Both sales and earnings are critical factors in the success of a company. Therefore, ranking companies by only one growth metric makes a ranking susceptible to the accounting anomalies of that quarter (such as changes in tax law or restructuring costs) that may make one or the other figure unrepresentative of the business in general. Companies with quarterly EPS or revenue growth of more than 2,500% were excluded as outliers.

Fastest Growing Stocks
Price ($) Market Cap ($B) EPS Growth (%) Revenue Growth (%)
LyondellBasell Industries NV (LYB) 89.11 29.7 1,490 87.4
Nucor Corp. (NUE) 113.90 32.6 1,060 109.3
Steel Dynamics Inc. (STLD) 62.40 12.4 931.9 118.3
Nielsen Holdings PLC (NLSN) 20.31 7.3 1,300 5.5
Westlake Chemical Corp. (WLK) 92.24 11.8 942.2 61.0

Source: YChartsPetco Health and Wellness Co. Inc.

  • LyondellBasell Industries NV: LyondellBasell Industries is a Netherlands-based multinational plastics, chemicals, and refining company. The company produces a range of chemicals, polymers, and fuels. It is also the largest licensor of polyolefin technologies and the largest producer of polypropylene compounds. LyondellBasell’s products are sold in more than 100 countries.
  • Nucor Corp.: Nucor is a manufacturer of steel and steel products, with operating facilities throughout North America. The company makes a broad range of carbon and alloy steel products, including bars, beams, sheet, electrical conduits, precision castings, steel fasteners, insulated metal panels, steel grating, and more. It also sells both ferrous and nonferrous metals. On Dec. 13, 2021, Nucor announced that it had agreed to acquire a majority position in California Steel Industries Inc. Nucor will purchase a total equity interest of 51% in two separate purchases: one from a subsidiary of Vale SA (VALE) and the other from JFE Steel Corp. (5411.T). The 50% equity interest purchased from Vale has a cash purchase price of $400 million. The purchase price of the remaining 1% interest from JFE Steel was undisclosed.
  • Steel Dynamics Inc.: Steel Dynamics is a steel producer and metals recycler with operation facilities throughout the United States and Mexico. The company produces hot roll, cold roll, and coated sheet steel, as well as structural steel beams and shapes, cold finished steel, merchant bar products, steel joists, and other products. It also produces liquid pig iron and processes ferrous and nonferrous scrap. Steel Dynamics has steelmaking and coating capacity of roughly 13 million tons as of Dec. 31, 2020. On Dec. 16, 2021, the company provided earnings guidance for the fourth quarter (Q4) of 2021 of between $5.46 and $5.50 per diluted share. This represents record quarterly EPS performance for the company.
  • Nielsen Holdings PLC: Nielsen Holdings is a global data and analytics company that focuses on the media industry. The company offers audience measurement, audience outcomes, content, and other analytics. Nielsen offers measurement and analytics service in more than 55 countries.
  • Westlake Chemical Corp.: Westlake Chemical is a maker and supplier of petrochemicals and polymer materials, including building products, infrastructure materials, packaging, healthcare products, and automotive and consumer goods. The company employs roughly 14,700 employees and operates worldwide. For Q3 2021, ended Sept. 30, 2021, Westlake reported a ninefold surge in net income on robust net sales growth YOY. Quarterly net sales, net income, and earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization (EBITDA) achieved company records, driven by higher-selling prices and margins.

Stocks with the Most Momentum

Momentum investing is a factor-based investing strategy that involves investing in a stock whose price has risen faster than the market as a whole. Momentum investors believe that stocks that have outperformed the market will often continue to do so because the factors that caused them to outperform will not suddenly disappear. In addition, other investors seeking to benefit from the stock’s outperformance will often purchase the stock, further bidding its price higher and pushing the stock higher still.

These are the stocks that had the highest total return over the past 12 months.

Stocks with the Most Momentum
Price ($) Market Cap ($B) 12-Month Trailing Total Return (%)
GameStop Corp. (GME) 144.59 11.0 944.0
Upstart Holdings Inc. (UPST) 140.64 11.5 377.2
Devon Energy Corp. (DVN) 40.36 27.3 169.6
Continental Resources Inc. (CLR) 43.28 15.8 153.7
Alcoa Corp. (AA) 52.59 9.8 144.2
Russell 1000 N/A N/A 25.5

Source: YCharts

  • GameStop Corp.: GameStop is a specialty retailer that offers games and entertainment products through its ecommerce properties and stores. It operates a chain of 4,816 stores in the United States, Canada, Australia, and Europe. It sells video game hardware, software, gaming accessories, and other entertainment products. The company primarily operates under the names GameStop, EB Games, and Micromania. GameStop’s stock has soared this year amid the meme stock frenzy. For Q3 FY 2021, ended Oct. 30, 2021, GameStop reported widening net losses despite 29.1% YOY growth in net sales.
  • Upstart Holdings Inc.: Upstart Holdings is an artificial intelligence (AI) lending platform focused on improving access to affordable credit while reducing the risks and costs faced by its bank partners. Its platform uses machine learning to identify risk and approve more applicants than traditional lending models. The company has originated $16.7 billion in loans as of Sept. 30, 2021.
  • Devon Energy Corp.: Devon Energy is an independent oil and natural gas exploration and production company. It owns a portfolio of U.S. assets and is primarily engaged in the exploration, development, and production of oil, natural gas, and natural gas liquids (NGLs). The company employed 1,400 people across the United States as of Dec. 31, 2020.
  • Continental Resources Inc.: Continental Resources is an oil and natural gas exploration and production company. It is the largest leaseholder and among the largest producers in the Bakken oil field region of North Dakota and Montana. The company employed 1,201 people throughout the United States as of Dec. 31, 2020.
  • Alcoa Corp.: Alcoa is a leading producer of aluminum, bauxite, and alumina products. The company serves customers in the aluminum industry around the world. Alcoa has access to bauxite reserves at seven global mines and a portfolio of seven alumina refineries, among other operations. On Dec. 13, 2021, the company announced the closure of its Wenatchee Works aluminum smelter in Washington state. The move will cost $75 million in restructuring and related charges to decommission the smelter, which had an aluminum smelting capacity of 146,000 metric tons.