- Goldman Sachs’ chief US equity strategist thinks investors are better off owning stable-growth stocks.
- David Kostin told CNBC that investors should focus less on balance sheet strength amid recession risk.
- He listed energy, healthcare and large-cap profitable tech stocks as his three sectors to eye.
Investors are better off turning their attention to stable-growth stocks as opposed to worrying about balance sheet strength, Goldman Sachs’ chief US equity strategist said.
David Kostin told CNBC on Thursday that his take is against the grain of popular thinking, specifically that stocks with strong balance sheets typically fare better when heading toward a potential recession .
But that’s not the case anymore, because balance-sheet strength and higher growth have converged into some of the same stocks, which are now vulnerable to rate hikes from the Federal Reserve , he said.
“A lot of the stronger balance sheet stocks are also a lot of the growth-ier stocks, and as the interest rate market has re-priced the idea of more Fed tightening over the last several months, growth stocks have done less well,” Kostin said.
That has made companies with slower or more stable growth profiles increasingly attractive to fund managers in the current environment, he added.
The remarks came a day before new inflation data raised expectations that the Fed will remain aggressive with its tightening campaign — or even get more hawkish. The Labor Department reported Friday that consumer price growth in May jumped to a fresh 41-year high of 8.6%, accelerating from April’s 8.3% pace.
Prior to the report, the central bank was expected to raise benchmark rates another 50 basis points at its next two meetings, but some investors are now betting on 75 basis points.
To find outperformance in the stock market, investors should look to better earnings growth, Kostin said, pointing to energy, healthcare and large-cap profitable tech stocks as three segments that could be used to build a portfolio.
In fact, energy has “some of the best growth in the market in terms of both sales and earnings — obviously commodity prices are up so much,” he added.
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