Stocks are coming off a losing week after fears the Federal Reserve could remove stimulus as soon as this year rattled investors.
With worries over the end of stimulus front and center in the past week, CNBC’s “Trading Nation” asked its traders for their top taper-tolerant stock picks – names that can survive, and even thrive, with a less dovish Fed.
One way to combat headwinds from the Fed is to find stocks with tail winds that can counteract them, according to Gina Sanchez, CEO of Chantico Global and chief market strategist at Lido Advisors.
“We think probably the most taper-resistant pick right now is something happening in the infrastructure play, and the infrastructure play leads us right to Nucor,” Sanchez said Friday.
North Carolina-based steel producer Nucor has already rallied nearly 120% this year. The shares are up 12% just this month.
“It was already hot because steel prices were going up, and then the infrastructure bill came along, and that was a big win. This is the largest diversified player in the U.S. and it’s cheap,” said Sanchez. “The thing about [tapering] is as soon as you hear taper, you start worrying about stocks that are overpriced but Nucor is a stock that is trading at about 8.5 times forward earnings.”
Craig Johnson, chief market technician at Piper Sandler, said it serves investors to take a look back to the last time tapering was mentioned – in May 2013, when then Fed Chair Ben Bernanke first suggested changing policy. Johnson said the best-performing sectors in the second half of 2013 were materials, industrials and technology.
Like Sanchez, Johnson is betting on outperformance in that second sector, the industrials, especially the mining stocks.
“When you look at this group right now, we’re testing to 2018 highs, and we’re also getting very close to reversing the downtrend channel that the mining diversified group has been in since 2006-2007 time frame,” Johnson said during the same interview.
“I would take a look at Cleveland-Cliffs,” he said. “You can see a clear higher low that’s been made, you’re breaking out above upper end of the resistance and on the shorter term, the trend is our friend here,” said Johnson.
Cleveland-Cliffs, another steel producer, is up 58% this year. The shares have risen 15% in the past month, though pulled back sharply in the last week.
Disclosure: Lido holds NUE.