Momentum stocks are some of the most popular choices for investors, and for good reason. When high-quality businesses see their stocks prices continue to reach new heights, chasing momentum winners can pay off big. While overbought momentum stocks bring inherent risk, reasonably-priced momentum plays still offer sizable upside.
With many stocks already off to a hot start in the market this year, momentum seems to be accelerating in certain pockets. Major indices recently hit fresh highs, and prominent stocks across a number sectors are also flashing very bullish technical signals. This type of broad-based momentum creates a rising tide that attracts investor interest.
It’s in these constructive early-bull market environments that momentum stocks really shine. So, now is the time to identify companies that are still flying under the radar with the potential to double over the next year.
Teekay Tankers (TNK)
As geopolitical tensions simmer, Teekay Tankers (NYSE:TNK) finds itself in an opportune position to capitalize on these trends. This shipping company has witnessed an incredible boom in recent years amid a confluence of tailwinds. Cheap oil from the pandemic gave way to surging post-COVID energy demand (and higher prices) in 2021. Then, 2022 saw alternate trade pathways emerge from the Eastern European war, funneling oil flows toward tankers. Even into 2023, Teekay benefited as Middle East conflicts prompt ships to take longer routes.
With spot tanker rates surging 500% since early 2022, Teekay’s profits skyrocketed. Yet, TNK stock trades at just 4-times trailing earnings, with many expecting declines if tensions ease. But with Russian sanctions likely persisting for years, I don’t foresee the tide turning yet. Even if localized conflicts subside, the new oil trade maps benefits Teekay.
Rather than bracing for declines, I expect Teekay’s exceptional growth to continue through 2024 amid sustained geopolitical uncertainty. With economies reopening and oil supplies still disrupted, this left-behind tanker stock appears poised for a major rebound.
VirTra (NASDAQ:VTSI) develops simulation equipment for military and law enforcement training, preparing personnel for high-risk scenarios through realistic video, audio, and environmental cues. Given escalating global tensions and rising crime rates here in the U.S., this company finds itself in the right niche at the right time.
VirTra’s products naturally align with the current landscape of uncertainty and fear. As personnel scramble to refine skills for potential crises – from warfare events abroad to violent crimes at home – demand for VirTra’s offerings continues growing.
The company has already witnessed 115% share growth over the past year. While the stock has cooled recently, I expect the backdrop supporting VTSI’s business to persist through 2024. Crime rates seem poised for additional increases, driving law enforcement spending. Notably, the company also boasts a 21.6% net margin, more than two-times as much cash as debt, and with its revenue aligned with critical real-world needs, VTSI stock seems poised to re-accelerate higher.
Kirkland (NASDAQ:KIRK) hasn’t participated much yet in the recent stock rally, but improving fundamentals and easing macroeconomic drags could change that dynamic. This home décor retailer endured years of post-COVID struggles as demand normalized, dragging shares down more than 90%. But after rebounding 132% off November lows, positive signals have now emerged.
Analysts still expect a 2024 sales decline, but shrinking losses depict an underlying turnaround. With housing activity stabilizing and consumers holding more discretionary income as interest rates potentially fall, Kirkland seems well-positioned to return to growth. Meanwhile, trends toward more flexible remote work fuel hope for the suburban home furnishings market to rebound.
Now, Kirkland must still confront the company’s $210 million debt load in this rising rate environment. However, progress toward profitability and supportive housing data paint an improving picture for the company’s fundamentals. Add the possibility of 2024 rate cuts, and the ingredients for a major breakout in KIRK stock may finally converge. With shares having fallen recently, even modest operational improvements could spark a sustained rebound.
On the date of publication, Omor Ibne Ehsan did not hold (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.