In general, the last quarter of the year is good for equity markets. However, it’s too early to assume that the markets are automatically headed higher. From the perspective of most investors, Q4 is set up to provide both opportunities and challenges. The upside is that the best time to look for stocks to buy is when there is blood in the streets. The bad news is that stocks may continue to struggle, given the current macro backdrop.
So, what’s the reason for concern?
Well, inflation remains high, and aggressive monetary tightening is increasing fears of a looming recession. The World Bank believes that the risk of a recession in 2023 has increased with simultaneous rate hikes. The markets may have yet to fully discount this factor.
There are also fears of a renewed covid wave in Europe, which can potentially impact global growth. Geopolitical tensions have already impacted growth. The International Monetary Fund cited war as one of the factors which could lead to a slowdown, as the IMF cut its global growth forecast for 2023.
That said, I think now is not the time for investors to hesitate in picking some deeply-undervalued growth and blue-chip stocks. At the same time, it may make sense to hoard some cash to assess stocks to buy at a later date.
Let’s look at some high-quality stocks to buy on a broad market correction.
Occidental Petroleum (OXY)
Occidental Petroleum (NYSE:OXY) starts off the list of top stocks to buy in this beaten-down market for a few reasons. This company has witnessed a big rally in the last 12 months, surging more than 100%. Higher energy prices and Warren Buffett’s stake in the company has contributed to the rally. With oil sustaining above $80 per barrel, the outlook seems positive for the stock. Any deep correction would present a good buying opportunity.
One big reason to like Occidental Petroleum is the company’s low break-even oil price. The company believes that dividend growth is sustainable even at $40 WTI. Accordingly, with oil trading significantly higher, the company has been reporting robust cash flows. In Q2 2022 alone, Occidental repaid $4.8 billion in debt.
Therefore, with an improving balance sheet and high-quality assets, Occidental is a core portfolio stock. The company is one of the largest U.S. acreage holders and owns assets that are located in low geopolitical risk zones.
Even amidst significant market volatility, Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) stock has traded relatively sideways over the past 12 months. This is a good indication of the value the stock holds at current levels. If the stock declines on broad market sentiment, I think this stock would make most investors’ lists of top stocks to buy.
In the coming quarters, the company’s results are likely to be strong on the back of high expected iPhone 14 Pro sales. However, Apple is an innovation pick with growth that’s likely to continue to be supported by diversification.
As an example, growth in Apple’s wearable segment has been robust. It’s estimated that the wearable technology market size will reach $392.4 billion by 2030. Therefore, Apple has ample room for growth.
Similarly, the company’s services segment has also swelled in the last few years. Additionally, long-standing rumors aorund the company’s electric car project can also be proven true, providing a massive potential growth trigger.
Considering the company’s cash buffer, Apple is positioned to make big investments for growth and diversification. Strong cash flows also provide sustained visibility for dividend growth and share repurchases over time.
Barrick Gold (GOLD)
Barrick Gold (NYSE:GOLD) stock has also been in a correction mode this year. This is not surprising, as gold has trended lower on contractionary monetary policies.
However, gold is an undervalued asset considering various factors. Whether it’s inflation, geopolitical tensions, global government debt and economic uncertainty, there’s reason to like the stability gold provides. Any further correction would therefore a good opportunity to accumulate GOLD stock.
Barrick Gold has an investment-grade balance sheet with $5.8 billion in cash. With healthy free cash flows, the company is positioned to sustain dividend distributions for the long haul. Currently, GOLD stock has an attractive dividend yield of 5.5%.
As of December 2021, the company also reported robust gold reserves of 69 million ounces. Last year, the company replaced its depletion of gold mineral reserves by 150%. With a strong replacement ratio, the company has steady production visibility in the coming years. Once gold trends higher and the company’s EBITDA margin expands, GOLD stock is likely to surge.
Coinbase Global (COIN)
Coinbase (NASDAQ:COIN) stock has been subject to a big selloff on the back of a crash in cryptocurrencies. Tight monetary policies have ensured that speculation declines across asset classes. Thus, the company’s income from trading has been negatively impacted.
Amidst these challenges, Coinbase has continued to develop its platform. First and foremost, the company has broadened its range of assets supported for trading and custody to 341 as of Q2 2022. It’s worth noting that the company’s income from staking has also been trending higher.
Furthermore, Coinbase reported 14,500 institutional customers as of Q2 2022. This is likely to be a big growth segment once Bitcoin (BTC-USD) trends higher.
Another key factor to consider is that Coinbase spent $609.2 million on technology and development in Q2 2022. On a year-over-year basis, this expense increased by more than 100%. This is an indication that the company is investing in platform improvement to better serve its customers, even in a downturn. These investments are likely to yield results when market sentiment reverses.
Coinbase ended Q2 2022 with a cash buffer of $5.7 billion. Accordingly, this company has ample financial flexibility to navigate its cash burn and continue investing in product development.
E-commerce stocks have taken a beating as market participants discount the post-pandemic deceleration in growth. Additionally, Chinese e-commerce stocks have already faced steep regulatory headwinds. Thus, this latest downturn may provide an excellent opportunity to buy this deeply undervalued stock.
If I had to choose one name, it would be JD.com (NASDAQ:JD). In the last 12 months, JD stock has declined by 44%. During the same period, Alibaba (NYSE:BABA) is lower by 54%. I believe that JD stock will remain an outperformer.
Indeed, the reason to like JD.com is the company’s strong logistics network. This strength will continue to ensure that the company has an edge when it comes to penetration into lower-tier cities.
It’s also worth noting that the company’s annualized operating cash flow is approximately $8 billion. This gives JD.com ample flexibility to invest in emerging business segments. For the first six-months of 2022, JD.com reported revenue of $1.8 billion from new businesses.
AstraZeneca (NASDAQ:AZN) is another great option for investors looking for stocks to buy in a correction. Thus far, AZN stock has been trading sideways this year. Accordingly, at a forward price-earnings ratio of 13.9-times, the stock already looks attractive.
The World Health Organization recently indicated that Europe might be seeing another covid wave. Thus, booster doses of Covid-19 vaccines are still likely to see demand. Of course, that’s not the only reason to be bullish on AZN stock.
The company currently has an attractive pipeline of 184 projects. This includes several late-stage drug candidates. As these drugs are commercialized, revenue growth is likely to remain strong.
For the first half of 2022, AstraZeneca reported operating cash flow of $4.5 billion. This implies annualized OCF potential of $9.0 billion. Robust cash flows ensure the company can maintain flexibility to invest in research and development. At the same time, the company has significant room for acquisitions.
Lockheed Martin (LMT)
It would be difficult to imagine a core portfolio absent a defense stock. Lockheed Martin (NYSE:LMT) stock is my pick in this regard, and one worth considering in corrections. Besides the stock’s capital gain upside, LMT stock also offers investors an attractive annual dividend of $12 per share.
For the current year, Lockheed has guided for sales of $65.3 billion and free cash flow of $6 billion. With $135 billion in order backlog, the company has two-year revenue visibility.
I also believe that the company’s order intake will accelerate as geopolitical tensions escalate. Global defense spending crossed $2 trillion for the first time in 2021. Spending will increase further with most European countries still short of NATO defense spending targets.
Lockheed is also focused on investing in businesses that can boost its EBITDA margin. The company is investing in hypersonics development besides few other “classified program capex projects.”
On the date of publication, Faisal Humayun did not hold (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.