Given the renewed sense of optimism, investors are looking for fresh investments to spruce up their portfolios. With this in mind, we used TipRanks’ Best Stocks to Buy tool to narrow down the 3 top stocks that represent the most compelling investments in the current economic climate. All of these stocks have the Street’s backing as each has received a recent ratings upgrade and earned a “Strong Buy” consensus, based on all of the ratings assigned to the stock over the last three months.
Planet Fitness (PLNT)
Despite some recent shakiness after management stated 2H19 comps will decelerate during its second quarter earnings conference call, one top analyst just gave the fitness chain a ratings boost.
Imperial Capital’s George Kelly believes the “best in class fitness operator” is a growth stock based on its solid fundamentals. In the latest quarter, the company posted revenue of $181.7 million which represented a 29% year-over-year gain. Not to mention, the company boasts 14 million guests which utilize its fitness centers.
That being said, more gains could be in store thanks to its new locations and higher pricing. With the company opening more centers this year than ever before and its introduction of more Black Card services as well as membership tiers, its long-term growth narrative appears strong.
All of this lends itself to Kelly’s conclusion that PLNT “offers much value at its current pricing relative to competitors” which include Crunch and The Edge Fitness. This prompted the five-star analyst to upgrade the rating to a Buy and set a $72.50 price target, which puts the upside potential at 20%. (To watch Kelly’s track record, click here)
The rest of the Street is even more bullish on PLNT. With 6 Buy ratings and 1 Hold received in the last three months, the stock is clearly a ‘Strong Buy’ among analysts. The upside potential also comes in at 36% based on its $82 average price target. (See Planet Fitness stock analysis on TipRanks)
Varonis Systems (VRNS)
Varonis Systems is a software company that provides data security and analytics solutions. The company, which is up 19% year-to-date, looks like a long-term winner according to several Wall Street analysts.
While its shift from license based software to subscription based initially posed a cause for concern among some investors, the transition appears to be going much more smoothly than expected. At the beginning of the year, management guided subscription revenue landing at 10% of total license revenues. However, investors got a pleasant surprise as the company delivered subscription revenue which made up 31% of license revenue in its first quarter. Its next quarter saw a similar result with subscriptions contributing to 56% of the license revenue mix.
“Subscription transition continues to happen faster than expected. We believe VRNS will report a quarter like their last two, a higher anticipated mix of subscription revenue and raised mix guidance,” Craig-Hallum analyst Chad Bennett explained. He now expects that subscriptions will account for between 65%-75% of total license revenue as VRNS exits 2019.
On top of the success of its altered business model, data obtained by Craig-Hallum indicates demand for its new subscription model remains healthy. This makes sense as a subscription based model reduces customers’ upfront investment so buying multiple products is more attractive.
Based on all of the above factors, Bennett upgraded the rating to a Buy and raised the price target from $70 to $75. The new price target conveys his confidence in VRNS’s ability to surge 22% over the next twelve months. (To watch Bennett’s track record, click here)
Other Wall Street analysts take a similar approach when it comes to this software stock. VRNS boasts a ‘Strong Buy’ Street consensus, with its $81 average price target implying 33% upside potential. (See Varonis Systems stock analysis on TipRanks)
TFI International (TFIFF)
It’s no question that the name behind Canada’s largest trucking fleet has taken a hit as a result of deterioration within the industry as a whole. Nonetheless, TFIFF share price could be on the road to recovery as the worst might be behind for the trucking space.
As truck-load freight rates start to stabilize, it could be a sign that contract rates will soon rebound as well. It should also be noted that while truck supply has increased, truck tonnage remains positive in 2019 and spot rates are still healthy.
While the industry still has a ways to go, TFIFF could see further truck-load margin improvement as it shifts focus towards revenue and operating expenses. In its U.S. Last Mile segment, management has also made a significant effort to improve revenue quality as well as efficiency.
BMO Capital five-star analyst Fadi Chamoun tells clients that its focus on revenue as well as its recent acquisitions including Aulick Leasing Corporation and ShirAul, LLC warranted bumping up the rating from a Hold to a Buy. “We expect Q3/19 results will prove to be resilient despite a softer freight market. This is supported by M&A and self-help opportunities in the U.S. TL and last-mile segments,” he commented.
As a result, Chamoun raised the price target from CA$45 to CA$47 in addition to lifting the rating. This price target suggests shares could gain 12% over the next twelve months. (To watch Chamoun’s track record, click here)
With only Buy ratings assigned in the last three months, the word on the Street is that TFIFF is a ‘Strong Buy’. Its $41 average price target indicates 28% upside potential.