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The 5 Best Stocks To Buy And Watch Right Now

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Buying a stock is easy, but buying the right stock without a time-tested strategy is incredibly hard. So what are the best stocks to buy now or put on a watchlist? Meta Platforms (META), Uber Technologies (UBER), Costco Wholesale (COST), SLB (SLB) and Zscaler (ZS), are prime candidates.




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Despite inflation worries and the Federal Reserve tightening rates aggressively, the market has confounded expectations for difficulties in 2023 and has turned in a strong performance so far in 2023, though it is now showing signs of weakness amid spiking Treasury yields. The Russian invasion of Ukraine continues to cast a shadow over markets.

Best Stocks To Buy: The Crucial Ingredients

Remember, there are thousands of stocks trading on the NYSE and Nasdaq. But you want to find the very best stocks right now to generate massive gains.

The CAN SLIM system offers clear guidelines on what you should be looking for. Invest in stocks with recent quarterly and annual earnings growth of at least 25%. Look for companies that have new, game-changing products and services. Also consider not-yet-profitable companies, often recent IPOs, that are generating tremendous revenue growth.

CAN SLIM has a proven track record of significantly outperforming the S&P 500. Outdoing this industry benchmark is key to generating exceptional returns over the long term.

In addition, keep an eye on supply and demand for the stock itself, focus on leading stocks in top industry groups, and aim for stocks with strong institutional support.

Once you have found a stock that fits the criteria, it is then time to turn to stock charts to plot a good entry point. You should wait for a stock to form a base, and then buy once it reaches a buy point, ideally in heavy volume. In many cases, a stock reaches a proper buy point when it breaks above the original high on the left side of the base. More information on what a base is, and how charts can be used to win big on the stock market, can be found here.

Don’t Forget The M When Buying Stocks

A key part of the CAN SLIM formula is the M, which stands for market. Most stocks, even the very best, follow the market direction. Invest when the stock market is in a confirmed uptrend and move to cash when the stock market goes into a correction.

While a stock market rally that kicked off 2022 soon fell on its face, it has turned in stunning gains so far this year. Indexes are currently at a potential turning point, with the Nasdaq and the S&P 500 both trading below the key 50-day moving average.

The stock market is currently in a correction. Investors should stop buying stocks altogether. They should also be entirely off margin and start raising cash. Start by selling your weakest performing stocks first.

Now is a good time to build a robust watchlist. Investors should be looking for exceptional stocks, such as those in the IBD 50. The stocks below are near buy points and are possible candidates.

It remains crucial to stay on top of sell signals. Any stock that falls 7% or 8% from your purchase price should be jettisoned. Also beware of sharp breaks below the 50-day or 10-week moving averages.

Remember, there is still significant headline risk. Inflation remains a key issue while the Russia-Ukraine conflict is a wild card that has proved its ability to shake the market.

Things can quickly change when it comes to the stock market. Make sure to keep a close eye on the market trend page here.

Best Stocks To Buy Or Watch

  • Meta Platforms
  • Uber
  • Costco
  • SLB
  • Zscaler

Now let’s look at Meta stock, Uber stock, Costco stock, SLB stock and Zscaler stock in more detail. An important consideration is that these best stocks to buy and watch all boast impressive relative strength.

Meta Stock

Meta is now trading in a cup base with an ideal entry of 326.20. This is a second-stage pattern. Such early-stage bases have a better chance of netting big gains.

Investors could also use 312.87 as an early buy point in a pattern that can be viewed as a handle.

Meta stock has been finding support near the 50-day moving average. The relative strength line is still near highs.

The social media giant has a strong EPS Rating of 86 out of 99. Growing bullish sentiment is reflected in the fact that Meta is in the top 2% of stocks in terms of price performance over the past 12 months.

The Facebook parent has been seeing improved performance lately, with Meta ending six straight quarterly earnings declines with its Q2 results in late July. The company topped estimates with a 32% earnings jump to $2.98 per share. Revenue rose for the second quarter in a row, accelerating 11% to $32 billion.

Meta lost roughly $10 billion in ad revenue last year due to Apple (AAPL) amending privacy policies for the iPhone. This made it more difficult to accurately target users with ads.

But Meta has made technology improvements with its new ad strategy. The firm’s turnaround this year has been driven by cost cutting and a recovery for ad sales.

Meta stock also is seen as a beneficiary of the artificial intelligence boom. The company has developed its own large-language model to power AI applications. Further, the company has used AI to develop new advertising products for businesses.

Beyond that, CEO Mark Zuckerberg hinted on the company’s second-quarter earnings call in late July that details on its AI work are coming at Meta Connect.

The Financial Times reported in August that Meta is preparing to introduce chatbots within its social media platforms. Analysts like that idea.

Meta’s two-day Connect virtual conference kicks off Wednesday. The company will unveil the third generation of its virtual-reality headset.

“Connect has typically been a virtual reality-driven event and the official launch of the Quest 3 will be a highlight, but we also expect an update and possible launch of Meta’s first consumer-facing gen-AI (generative artificial intelligence) solutions,” Loop Capital analyst Rob Sanderson said in a client note Friday.

Uber Stock

Among the best stocks to buy and watch currently, Uber has formed a flat base with an ideal buy point of 49.49. This is a third-stage pattern.

The stock has fallen below the 50-day line amid broader pressure, but the relative strength line is still near highs.

Overall performance is strong, with Uber stock’s IBD Composite Rating coming in at 86 out of 99. It is in the top 4% of stocks in terms of price performance over the past 12 months.

Big Money has been a net buyer of the stock of late, with its Accumulation/Distribution Rating coming in at B-.

The company benefited during the pandemic from the firm’s range of transportation and delivery services. This helped offset a sharp decline in the ride-sharing business during this period.

Now the ride-sharing business is back in the driver’s seat. Sales soared 38% for the division during the quarter to $4.89 billion. Delivery revenue jumped 14% year over year to $3.05 billion.

In 2021, the company launched Uber One, a membership program that offers discounts on food delivery. There also are perks for using its ride-sharing business.

Uber has been lowering spending this year via layoffs in its recruiting and freight divisions.

Uber recently reached a milestone by turning in its first profitable quarter.

Gross bookings grew 16% to $33.6 billion, ahead of analyst views for $33.49 billion.

Analysts expect Uber to post earnings of $1.02 per share in 2023. That should surge 59% to $1.62 in 2024.

Evercore ISI analyst Mark Mahaney recently named Uber its top internet large-cap pick. He has a price target of 75 on the stock.

“UBER was forced very early on in the Covid crisis to take drastic cost actions — actions which helped it attain the FCF (free cash flow) inflection it reached in Q2 (2022) and the record FCF results of the last four quarters,” he said in a note to clients.

He also believes the company’s Mobility segment is likely to be “relatively recession-resistant from a demand perspective.”


Looking For The Next Big Stock Market Winners? Start With These 3 Steps


Costco Stock

Costco stock is trading just below a buy zone. Shares briefly tipped a flat-base buy point of 571.16 before reversing back below the entry.

The relative strength line for COST is looking mighty and currently sits at a 52-week high.

Costco stock is currently bullishly trading above both its 50-day line and its short-term moving averages.

Overall performance is very strong, with COST’s IBD Composite Rating coming in at 92 out of 99. It is in the top 12% of issues in terms of stock market performance over the past 12 months.

COST, one of the best stocks to buy and watch, sits at the summit of the Retail-Major Discount Chains industry group.

Costco has been moving well since it defied the wider retail downturn by topping estimates for its fiscal fourth quarter last month.

Earnings growth slowed after two quarters of accelerating gains, but EPS still climbed nearly 16% to $4.86 per share. Total revenue jumped 9.5% to $78.94 billion, ending a streak of decelerating growth for the past four quarters.

Analysts polled by FactSet expected Costco earnings to rise 14% to $4.79 per share. Revenue was seen swelling 7.8% to $77.72 billion.

Adjusted comparable sales, which exclude changes in gas prices and foreign currencies, rose 3.8%. U.S. comparable sales climbed 3.1%. Same-store sales in Canada increased 7.4%. Other international comparable sales rose 4.4%. However, e-commerce comparable sales fell 0.6% for the period.

Costco might be the only retailer selling hot dogs, gold bars and $250,000 diamond rings under the same roof. You can also buy a tank of gas, a chicken coop or a funeral casket there while you’re at it. This is a huge part of Costco’s allure.

It sells a large variety of items inside a chain of nondescript warehouses and charges customers a $60 membership fee just to get in the door. Costco’s buy-in-bulk branding also makes it an ideal place for consumer stockpiling.

But during the firm’s earnings conference call, CFO Richard Galanti said increasing the price of Costco memberships “is a question of when, not if.”

The company last increased its membership fees in June 2017. “You’ll see it happen at some point,” Galanti added. “We can’t really tell you if it’s in our plans or not.”

SLB Stock

SLB, formerly Schlumberger, is trading near a cup-with-handle base buy point of 58.70. Shares have pulled back after a modest gain. They are now trying to regain the 50-day line.

The relative strength line has trended higher even amid the broader market pullback.

Overall performance is top notch, netting SLB stock a perfect IBD Composite Rating of 99. Earnings performance is particularly impressive, with EPS growing an average 68% over the past three quarters.

Among the best stocks to buy and watch, ZS is also in the top 6% of issues in terms of price performance over the past 12 months.

SLB is one of the world’s largest providers of on- and offshore drilling services. It also provides technology for well drilling, production, and oil and gas processing.

Energy prices have fueled upward momentum for oil stocks. But oil prices have cooled slightly while gasoline futures have declined significantly.

On July 21, SLB narrowly topped Q2 profit expectations but missed on revenue. Despite this, SLB Chief Executive Officer Olivier Le Peuch told analysts he remains optimistic about the long-term outlook.

“We continue to see positive upstream investment momentum in the international and offshore markets,” he said. “These markets are being driven by resilient long-cycle offshore developments, production capacity expansions, the return of global exploration and appraisal, and the recognition of gas as a critical fuel source for energy security and the energy transition.”

Analysts see third-quarter earnings growing 22% to 77 cents per share, with sales increasing 12% to $8.34 billion.

In addition, Wall Street is expecting SLB profit to grow 37% to $2.98 per share in 2023 and 23% in 2024.


What To Do As Stocks Slide As Treasury Yields Soar


Zscaler Stock

Zscaler stock is testing support again at the 10-week line after offering a rebound entry from the key support level. Shares also cleared a trendline

Among the best stocks to buy and watch, ZS could also be in the early innings of forming a new base with a potential buy point of 167.50.

The relative strength line for the stock is holding near highs even as the broader market pulls back.

Overall performance is mighty, with the stock holding a near-perfect IBD Composite Rating of 98. The stock has jumped more than 35% so far in 2023.

Big Money has been a net buyer of the stock of late, with its Accumulation/Distribution Rating a solid B-.

When the firm reported earnings last month, fiscal EPS, revenue and billings topped Wall Street targets.

For fiscal 2024, which starts with the October quarter, Zscaler said it expects earnings in a range of $2.20 to $2.25 per share, ahead of estimates for $2.11.

Zscaler expects revenue of $2.05 billion to $2.065 billion. Analysts had predicted revenue of $2.05 billion. Based on Zscaler’s outlook, sales growth would slow to around 27% in fiscal 2024, from 48% in fiscal 2023.

The company is proving itself a leader in the next-generation cloud-based data security market.

Its technology and services offer protection to enterprise users no matter what device is used. Zscaler has adopted a cloud-based global platform that uses SD-WAN technology (software-defined wide-area networking).

“We believe the company’s proxy-based security architecture is well-suited for large enterprises transitioning to a cloud-centric operating model,” Oppenheimer analyst Kidron Singh said in a recent note to clients.

Please follow Michael Larkin on X, formerly known as Twitter, at @IBD_MLarkin for more analysis of growth stocks.

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