7 Cheap Stocks to Buy Before They Surge Higher

As we enter the last quarter of 2022, the macro issues that have defined the year continue to persist. Inflation remains high, interest rates keep climbing, as does the risk of a recession. Yet while overall market sentiment remains deeply negative, there is opportunity to seize, with cheap large-cap stocks to buy.

Not only has it been speculative and growth-focused stocks that have hit lower prices following the latest rounds of market volatility. Even more defensive names, as well as stocks benefiting from current trends (commodities stocks) have been been bid down to lower prices.

This has created the ability to scoop up many high-quality large-cap stocks at very favorable valuations. Made cheaper by external factors, once these issues clear up, these undervalued but fundamentally superior stocks are well-positioned to make a rapid recovery.

That’s the story here, with these seven large-cap stocks to buy. Earning either an A or B in Portfolio Grader, consider now a great time to enter/add to a position.

America Movil SAB de CV (AMX)
Mexico-based America Movil SAB de CV (NYSE:AMX) is the dominant telecom firm in its home market. It has a 70% and 62% share of the Mexican mobile internet and mobile phone markets, respectively. America Movil also has a substantial presence in Europe, Latin America and the U.S.

Holding steady compared to the overall market earlier this year, AMX stock has pulled back in recent months. The aforementioned macro concerns have led investors to shun America Movil shares. However, instead of going with the crowd, you may want to instead take the contrarian view on this stock, which earns a B in Portfolio Grader.

As Citi analyst Andres Cardona argued when he upgraded the stock in August, the company’s strong free cash flow points to increased dividends and buybacks. These could help move the AMX stock back higher. A spinoff of its mobile towers business is another potential catalyst.

Canadian Natural Resources (CNQ)
With energy prices currently moving lower, the sell-off among oil and gas stocks such as Canadian Natural Resources (NYSE:CNQ) may seem justified. Yet while crude oil prices have fallen back to levels last seen just before Russia’s invasion of Ukraine (which caused a fossil fuel supply shock), that doesn’t mean the opportunity here with CNQ has come and gone.

First, it’s not a given that fossil fuel prices will continue to pull back. In fact, some commodities analysts, including the chief economist of oil trading giant Trafigura, believe that another spike lies ahead next year, due to new supply shocks created by industry underinvestment.

Second, as demand could continue to outstrip supply, this energy company is likely to continue using the high profits resulting from high oil and gas prices to pay down debt, buy back stock and issue special dividends.

CNQ stock earns an A in Portfolio Grader.

Mosaic Company (MOS)
With investors declaring the Russia/Ukraine-driven spike in fertilizer prices as temporary, Mosaic Company (NYSE:MOS) shares have fallen considerably in the past few months.

The market currently is pricing this provider of fertilizer ingredients like phosphates and potash as if its recent windfall earnings are going to reverse.

But taking a look at the details, so far fertilizer prices have stayed high. While something that would have worsened the supply crisis (destruction of a key fertilizer facility by Hurricane Ian) fortunately did not happen, the key factor keeping supplies tight (sanctions against Russia) continues. This points to prices remaining high, which of course is good news for Mosaic.

MOS stock (which earns a B in Portfolio Grader) currently trades for 3.6 times earnings. If the company continues to report similar results, the stock could get out of its current slump, and resume an upwards trajectory.

Marathon Oil (MRO)
Marathon Oil (NYSE:MRO) is another situation where the market is overestimating how much the latest energy price trends will affect future results and underappreciating the company’s ability to deliver strong returns to its shareholders.

MRO stock trades for only 4.8 times 2022 estimated earnings. Even if Marathon’s earnings per share (or EPS) falls from $4.93 to $4.33 next year (per sell-side forecasts), Marathon still trades at a low valuation (5.4 times earnings).

Beyond just the potential for shares to rise on multiple expansion, what could really move the needle for Marathon Oil stock (which earns an A in Portfolio Grader) is management’s decision to return a majority of its cash flow back to investors.

Since last October, Marathon has bought back over $2.3 billion worth of shares. While its current dividend (1.36% forward yield) is modest, there’s substantial room for dividend growth.

Petroleo Brasileiro S.A. (PBR)
Better known as Petrobras, Petroleo Brasileiro S.A. (NYSE:PBR) is Brazil’s biggest oil company. Recently, this large-cap energy stock has been under pressure and not just because of the pullback in crude oil prices.

Brazil’s 2022 Presidential election has also weighed on PBR stock. Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, who won a plurality of votes in the first round on Oct. 2, has a strong chance of winning the Oct. 30 run-off election. The left-wing candidate’s plans for Petrobras could come at the expense of PBR’s minority shareholders.

However, as one sell-side analyst (J.P. Morgan’s Rodolfo Angele) has argued, it’s possible that the prospect of a da Silva victory is already priced-in. I agree with this view, given PBR stock (which earns an A in Portfolio Grader) trades for only 3 times 2022 earnings. If uncertainties about Petrobras’ future resolve, shares could experience an outsized rebound.

Suncor Energy (SU)
Suncor Energy (NYSE:SU) is another of the cheap large-cap stocks to buy in the energy sector. As with the two other energy stocks listed above, Suncor has been pushed to an extremely-discounted valuation.

SU stock currently trades for just four times 2022 estimated earnings. Besides the potential for a re-rating, if oil prices remain high, there’s another catalyst in motion. Back in July, Suncor added three directors to its board backed by activist fund Elliott Investment Management.

Furthermore, Suncor said it was open to Elliott’s idea of selling its retail gas station chain, Petro-Canada. A sale of Petro-Canada, along with other ideas Elliott has suggested (like enhanced capital return) could enable this stock (which earns an A in Portfolio Grader) to move towards prices more reflective of Suncor’s underlying value. Along with two catalysts to move it higher, SU stock also sports a 5% forward dividend yield.

Tenaris S.A. (TS)
Tenaris S.A. (NYSE:TS) is a producer of steel products for the oil and gas industry with operations throughout the world. Tenaris rallied earlier this year, alongside other energy-related stocks on the heels of Russia’s Ukraine invasion.

Since then, TS stock has given back these gains, as Russia-related tailwinds have become outweighed by concerns about a global recession. However, the current bearish sentiment for shares works to your advantage.

Trading at a low valuation (7.7 times earnings), and sporting a 4.33% forward yield, TS stock (which earns an A in Portfolio Grader) could deliver strong returns for investors buying it today.

As Tenaris argued in its Sept. 30. investor presentation, as demand for fossil fuels will keep rising, even with the shift towards renewable energy, long-term trends remain on the company’s side. This points to continued growth for Tenaris, and a continued move higher for TS stock.

— Louis Navellier and the Investor Place Research Staff

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Source: Investor Place