Just about everything is cyclical. That’s true of the market and growth stocks in particular. Growth stocks thrive in low-interest environments.
Such an environment existed from the period following the great financial crisis all the way up to early 2022. Keeping interest rates close to zero resulted in strong growth stock performance.
Runaway inflation forced the Federal Reserve to finally reverse course in March of 2023 when it instituted the first of nine consecutive rate hikes.
Over a year later, it looks like those hikes may be over and are certainly slowing. That indicates that shares in growth-first firms should thrive or at least become more attractive.
Shares that lost big in 2022 are suddenly worth reconsidering in April of 2023.
Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) stock never actually suffered in even as tech imploded in 2022. That implosion began in late 2021 as it became apparent that inflation rates needed to be addressed. The market recognized that a Fed rate hike was imminent and tech stocks fell dramatically.
The next year was a free fall for tech valuations, with tech falling more than 30% during the year. MSFT stock fell 20% throughout 2022. That was largely in line with overall markets and suggested that Microsoft was more resilient.
Microsoft has bounced back even as revenues were flat heading into the beginning of 2023. Market confidence in Microsoft has a lot to do with how well positioned the firm is to address the future.
Cloud revenues increased by 22% during the quarter proving that Microsoft can find growth in dire times. Microsoft Cloud is leveraging AI models to advance computing in new ways, creating new opportunities and revenue streams.
Microsoft also has invested substantially in ChatGPT giving it major advantages presently.
Now looks like an opportune time to invest in SolarEdge (NASDAQ:SEDG) stock. Clearly, solar energy is here to stay. Green energy investment is more than just a fad and the world is continuing to move away from fossil fuels.
SolarEdge benefits from that momentum as a leading global solar inverter company.
Inverters convert energy captured by solar panels from photovoltaic energy into electric energy. Without them, solar panels are essentially useless. But SolarEdge isn’t investment worthy based on the utility of its products alone.
It has more to do with the trajectory of the company. SolarEdge reached $3.1 billion in revenues in 2022. Analysts expect sales to grow to $4.1 billion by the end of this year and approach $5 billion by 2024.
The company’s price-to-sales ratio is much lower than it was at the height of the solar boom. That reasonable multiple, combined with rapidly rising sales, suggests that SEDG stock offers a lot of upside currently.
Alphabet (NASDAQ:GOOG,GOOGL) continues to represent a great opportunity. Its stock offers roughly 15% upside based on current prices and analysts’ expectations. But investors remain hesitant.
I believe the logic behind that reticence is simple: Investors can’t seem to wrap their heads around the notion that pandemic-style growth opportunities cannot last indefinitely.
Google’s revenues were steadily growing at an annual rate of roughly $20 billion prior to the onset of the pandemic.
Then came lockdowns and life behind computers got a steroid boost that spiked growth. Google’s bread-and-butter search business boomed and ad revenues jumped up.
The company saw 2021 revenues of $181 billion balloon to $256 billion in 2021. 2022 saw a deceleration and Google’s revenues again grew by roughly $20 billion, reaching $280 billion.
2023 should see similar top-line growth with an acceleration in 2024 as the economy turns around. By 2024 Google will be more than double the company it was in 2018 by sales. Thank the pandemic, just don’t expect its windfall to benefit Google indefinitely.
On the date of publication, Alex Sirois did not have (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.