Sometimes it is as simple as looking at the new high list. The market has had a very big run and there were 139 new highs on Friday, an extraordinary amount given the massive selloff we had earlier in the year.
Let's drill down, though, on the 20 stocks from the S&P that had 52 week highs and see if we can make sense of their propulsion even as we recognize that this list is not a buy list but a list of stocks that have been brought to new heights.
Number one: Regeneron (REGN) . Easy, developing both a vaccine and a treatment that could be prophylactic or get you out of the hospital quickly.
Two: Activision Blizzard (ATVI) . Stay at home video game story with a great set of products.
Three: Incyte (INCY) . Biotech takeover speculation after revealing many shots on goal in recent presentations.
Four: Adobe (ADBE) . On show last week revealing a fantastic quarter. Quintessential driver of e-commerce.
Five: Tractor Supply (TSCO) . If you have been to one you know that it has everything you need to turn a country house into a farm house or allow you to grow the best garden, which is why I like them so much. I get my apparel there, too. Big big numbers here.
Six: Hologic (HOLX) . This company has a fabulous diagnostic division with top quality mammogram equipment but it is running because it has a competitive covid test.
Seven: ServiceNow (NOW) . This company is blowing the doors off of its opportunities to digitize internal operations. Bill McDermott, late of SAP, has turned this company from niche to mass in an incredibly short period of time and he's not done. The industry is in awe of him right now.
Eight: Clorox (CLX) . When you have your products on allocation because of demand you are in the catbird seat. When you have a new business partnering with airlines or movie theatre chains you are a brand new service company. Clorox can go to Europe with its fabulous consumer products. We own it for the trust and am grateful that we have some stocks in play on this list.
Nine: Microsoft (MSFT) . Reinventing itself as a cloud company while continuing its dominance over the enterprise. I don't know how to valuate this one other than to say it is the blue chip of the era.
Ten: Nasdaq (NDAQ) . Had been an exchange company. That's no longer the case. It is now a data company, fin tech. That's what's needed. Nasdaq provides a valuable chit in the fin tech game.
Eleven: AmerisourceBergen (ABC) The lone value stock on this list. At 13 times earnings, this drug wholesaler is simply cheap BY COMPARISON and nothing more. Take-out?
Twelve: Apple (AAPL) . Developers conference today plus a huge push by Cowen saying you simply can't sell it ahead of the 5G cycle, given the impetus to go higher. I think a lot of people bought this stock ahead of the conference and have been rewarded with good research and some powerful products.
Thirteen: We never talk about electronic design automation makers, but that's Cadence (CDNS) and it's terrific at what it does. Someone cares or it wouldn't be on the list. Its products offer solutions for 5G and cloud issues.
Fourteen: Like Cadence at thirteen, Synopsys (SNPS) is one of the best electronic design automation software companies. If you look at its website you can see that it's products do the same thing as Cadence. Popular vertical!
Sixteen: T-Mobile (TMUS) is about the combination and synergies with Sprint. I think that this is a colossus that doesn't have a lot of sponsorship and can keep going.
Seventeen: Electronic Arts (EA) . The video game stay at home trade, again.
Nineteen: Lowe's (LOW) . Marvin Ellison is whipping this home improvement center into shape. Still a lot of ground to make up against Home Depot (HD) , but the wind is at its back and I love the stay at home and make the home and office trade.
Finally, Twenty: PayPal (PYPL) . I think it would take a thermonuclear warhead to stop this one, which is a best of breed modern pay payments story.
Are these stocks cheap? With the exception of AmerisourceBergen, no. Are they what's driving this market? They are emblematic of the move. Can you buy them? I like buying stocks like these down 5%-7% when no one wants them. But that may never happen and I will just say, pass.