Stocks to buy

7 Stocks to Double Your Money in Today’s Markets

The stock market continues to rip higher. And this year, the gains are primarily concentrated in technology stocks, specifically companies that are involved in artificial intelligence. Year to date, the benchmark S&P 500 index is up 20%, while the tech-laden Nasdaq has gained nearly 40%. In fact, only seven tech stocks have accounted for most of the increase in the S&P 500 so far in 2023. While we are back in a bull market, the current rally is not broad-based or well-rounded. That said, many tech stocks have already doubled, in some cases tripled, in a little more than six months, providing investors with outsized gains. While the run over the first half of the year was breathtaking, most analysts see more gains leading into 2024, and AI is expected to continue pushing stocks higher. Here are seven stocks to double your money in today’s market.

Microsoft (MSFT)

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Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) is a leader in the artificial intelligence race, and its stock is hitting new all-time highs as a result. In fact, MSFT stock just closed at an all-time high on a split-adjusted basis after the company announced a new Microsoft 365 AI subscription service. The new subscription service, called “Copilot,” adds AI capabilities to Microsoft’s popular Office suite of products that includes Word, Excel, and Teams. Specifically, Copilot can design presentations, offer writing prompts, provide meeting notes, and rank emails for people.

Analysts and investors cheered news of the Copilot subscription service, seeing it as a concrete way for Microsoft to monetize its AI functionality. Copilot will cost an additional $30 per month, and prices charged to enterprise customers could rise more than 80%, bringing in additional revenue for the company through recurring subscription fees. Microsoft has invested more than $10 billion into generative A.I. technologies, largely through a multibillion-dollar investment in ChatGPT creator OpenAI. MSFT stock has gained 50% year-to-date.

Goldman Sachs (GS)

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For a buy-the-dip candidate, look to U.S. investment bank Goldman Sachs (NYSE:GS). The Wall Street firm’s stock is down 5% on the year after the bank reported a second-quarter profit that missed analysts’ consensus expectations. Goldman Sachs announced Q2 earnings per share (EPS) of $3.08, which was below the $3.18 expected on the Street. Revenue for Q2 amounted to $10.90 billion, which was only slightly better than the $10.84 billion forecast.

Goldman Sachs is struggling with a global slump in investment banking and trading activity as the number of mergers and acquisitions (M&A) and initial public offerings (IPOs) remains low. The company also took a hit from an impairment charge related to its planned sale of fintech unit GreenSky. However, it likely won’t be long before Goldman Sachs is back on top. With the stock market gathering steam after last year’s broad selloff, deals should come back in vogue on Wall Street. GS stock has gained 44% over the last five years.

Amazon (AMZN)

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E-commerce giant Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) is a tech stock on the rebound that has more room to run. The company just reported the most successful Prime Day sales event in its history. The sale that ran from July 11 to 12 generated a record $12.7 billion in revenue for Amazon during what is typically the slowest time of the year for the company. Total sales from the July Prime Day event were up 6.7% from a year earlier when U.S. consumers spent $11.9 billion, according to Adobe Analytics.

Amazon management is talking up the success, calling the latest Prime Day sales event its “biggest ever,” with shoppers buying more than 375 million items over two days, up from 300 million items sold in July 2022. The company adds that the first 24 hours of its latest Prime Day was the “single largest sales day in company history.” Amazon started Prime Day in 2015 to attract new subscribers and boost sales. The latest figures are great news and come as AMZN stock has risen 14% over the past 12 months, with more additional runway in front of it.

Meta Platforms (META)

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Shares of Meta Platforms (NASDAQ:META) were going gangbusters before the company launched its new social media site “Threads,” which competes directly against Twitter. But news that Threads added 100 million users in only five days, growing at a faster clip than AI chatbot sensation ChatGPT, has given META stock an even bigger boost. Year to date, Meta Platforms’ share price has increased 152% following a bruising downturn throughout 2022.

Meta has taken steps to appease analysts and shareholders in recent months, announcing staff layoffs, cutting costs, and pivoting to focus on AI products. Now, Threads is proving to be a resounding success for the company. The social media platform is integrated with Instagram, which Meta also owns, making user adoption quick and painless. Instagram currently has more than two billion active users worldwide, giving Threads an enormous installed base. Reports that the adoption of Threads has eased somewhat should be expected after its red-hot start.

Tesla (TSLA)

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Shares of electric vehicle maker Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA) were also on a tear this year before the company announced its newest product. Following more than two years of delays, Tesla has officially built its first Cybertruck at its manufacturing plant in Austin, Texas. Tesla CEO Elon Musk first announced the futuristic-looking fully electric pick-up truck in 2019. The company had promised that the Cybertruck would be available to buy in 2021. But Tesla repeatedly pushed back that timing, citing worldwide shortages of critical components.

Musk now says that Tesla plans to produce 250,000 Cybertrucks a year, depending on consumer demand. The Cybertruck is expected to compete against other electric pick-up trucks from rivals Ford Motor Co. (NYSE:F) and General Motors (NYSE:GM) and provide Tesla with additional revenue going forward. The Cybertruck is expected to enter mass production by year’s end. TSLA stock has been rising at a blistering pace in 2023, having gained 174% since January.

Federal Express (FDX)

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For a non-tech stock that is marching higher, consider Federal Express (NYSE:FDX). The shipping and logistics concern has seen its share price grow 47% so far this year. The gains come after a downturn in FDX stock last year and as the company continues to post mixed earnings in a difficult operating environment. At the end of June, FedEx announced fiscal fourth quarter results, reporting a 28% decline in EPS to $4.94, while revenue dropped 10.2% to $21.9 billion. Analysts expected earnings of $4.85 on sales of $22.55 billion.

Looking ahead to its 2024 fiscal year, FedEx guided for earnings of $16.50 to $18.50 a share on flat to low single-digit revenue growth. Analysts’ consensus forecast called for fiscal 2024 earnings of $18.33 per share on $90.91 billion of revenue. While the company has struggled with supply chain disruptions and weak global demand, signs are pointing to a recovery. Plus, FedEx continues to make internal changes, announcing that Chief Financial Officer (CFO) Michael Lenz will retire on July 31 of this year.

Alibaba (BABA)

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A lot of well-known investors, including Michael Burry of the Big Short fame, are bullish on China right now. And one of the stocks they’re buying a lot of the e-commerce company Alibaba (NYSE:BABA), often referred to as the “Amazon of China.” A lot is going on with Alibaba right now. The company announced this spring that it plans to split into six new business groups and explore IPOs for each one of them. Alibaba says the split represents the most significant reorganization in its history.

Additionally, Alibaba has replaced its CEO Daniel Zhang, announcing that he has been succeeded in the top job by Eddie Wu. Alibaba said Zhang will remain with the company and is transitioning to focus on the cloud intelligence business. Alibaba is trying to boost its business amid slow economic growth in China and after government regulators cracked down on the company over the past two years, slapping it with a record antitrust fine of $2.8 billion. BABA stock has gained a tentative 2% YTD. But more gains could be in store, especially once the company is restructured.

On the date of publication, Joel Baglole held long positions in MSFT and GM . The opinions expressed in this article are those of the writer, subject to the Publishing Guide.

Joel Baglole has been a business journalist for 20 years. He spent five years as a staff reporter at The Wall Street Journal, and has also written for The Washington Post and Toronto Star newspapers, as well as financial websites such as The Motley Fool and Investopedia.