The S&P 500 is breaking out to a one-month high as it closes above its 50-day moving average for the first time in over two months. The bullish technical action in the major U.S. stock index should signal higher prices in the coming months as money moves back into riskier assets. Here are a handful of stocks that have already broken out to 52-week highs and are leading the major stock indexes higher. Of the list of new news, there are four stocks that stick out above the rest for a plethora of reasons.
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Brookfield Infrastructure (NYSE:BIP) is involved in the utilities, transportation, energy and timber industries around the globe. The stock broke to a new all-time high recently and is up 18% year-to-date. On top of the capital gains is the 4.5% yield that it offers. The stock trades with a forward P/E ratio of 21.2 and a PEG ratio of 5.16. The latter is very high, but does not correctly account for potential growth in the years ahead. Support is near $32 and would be the area to buy on a pullback.
SEE: PEG Ratio Nails Down Value Stocks
The largest retailer in the country and the leader of all discount stores, Wal-Mart (NYSE:WMT), continues its amazing run as it hits its best level in 12 years. The stock that pays a 2.3% dividend is now up 13.5% for the year, and is consolidating before it makes a move towards its all-time high of $70. The company trades with a forward P/E ratio of 12.7 and a PEG ratio of 1.68. Both numbers are acceptable, but not eye-popping. However, if the trend of downshifting to lower priced goods continues, one of the biggest winners will be WMT.
SEE: Great Expectations: Forecasting Sales Growth
Not exactly a retailer, but its products can be found in many retailers, Under Armour (NYSE:UA) is hitting a new all-time high. The apparel and footwear maker, which specializes in sports gear, has been a winner as sales in both the retail and organized sports sectors have been robust. The stock does not pay a dividend and currently trades with a forward P/E ratio of 33 and a PEG ratio of 2.19. The stock needs to pull back about 8% from the current highs to the $98 area before it becomes a more attractive buy candidate.
LivePerson (Nasdaq:LPSN) offers services that sound just like its name. The company provides online engagement solutions for companies and their customers via live chats and other interactions. The stock has been a big winner, gaining over 35% in 2012, and appears to be on a one-way track higher. The stock now has a forward P/E ratio of 33.7 and a PEG ratio of 1.74. Before considering buying, waiting for a pullback to the $17 area would be a good risk/reward setup. The stock can be volatile and patience will pay off for LPSN.
The Bottom Line
Buying stocks breaking out can be a solid long-term and short-term strategy for riding momentum in a stock. However the one key is waiting for the stock to pullback after breaking to a new high. Nearly all healthy breakouts will include a pullback on light volume that will test the old resistance level. Waiting will allow for a better entry point and less risk.
At the time of writing, Matthew McCall did not own shares in any of the companies mentioned in this article.