Stocks to buy

3 Cheap Stocks With Strong Growth Runways in 2024

There are plenty of cheap growth stocks for investors to buy right now. With the market rally heavily concentrated in mega-cap technology names, artificial intelligence (AI) and weight loss drugs, there are many stocks to be had at low multiples right now, a lot of which look undervalued. Many of the cheapest stocks have depressed share prices and low valuations despite posting strong earnings and giving robust forecasts.

For long-term investors who plan to buy and then hold a security, the current market offers an opportunity to buy into great companies with established brands at very cheap prices. In the long run, shareholders who take positions now are sure to be rewarded when the market rally broadens out or rotates. If the goal remains to buy low and sell high, then now is an ideal time to cherry pick some leading stocks. Here are three cheap stocks with strong growth runways in 2024.

General Motors (GM)

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General Motors (NYSE:GM) stock is up 5.4% on the year, but the company’s stock still looks cheap trading at just five times future earnings estimates. And at $40 per share, it’s not too expensive for the average investor to take a position on the Detroit automaker. GM stock also pays a quarterly dividend of 12 cents a share for a yield of 1.20%. The stock has been on an upswing since the company reached a new contract agreement with the United Auto Workers (UAW) union that ended a protracted work stoppage at the company last fall.

As for growth, the year ahead is looking fairly strong at General Motors. The company recently issued guidance that calls for earnings of $8.50 to $9.50 a share and free cash flow of $8 billion to $10 billion in 2024. The earnings guidance is better than the company’s 2023 results and higher than Wall Street forecasts that had called for flat results in the year ahead. Company executives acknowledged that the adoption of electric vehicles (EVs) has been sluggish, but stressed that they remain committed to expanding EV sales even as they ramp-up traditional gas-powered vehicle sales.

United Airlines (UAL)

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Shares of United Airlines (NASDAQ:UAL) also continue to look woefully undervalued. Like General Motors, UAL stock is trading at five times future earnings estimates and looks affordable. The airline’s share price has gained 10% so far in 2024, but remains well off its pre-pandemic peak. United’s stock is today trading nearly 50% lower than where it was in 2019 before anyone had heard of Covid-19. Now would be a good time for investors to pick-up shares of UAL stock as the company regains its footing and grows again along with travel demand that has strengthened in the U.S. and abroad.

Owing to strong bookings, United recently reported strong results for Q4 2023. The fourth biggest airline in America announced earnings per share of $2, and a 10% increase in revenue to $13.60 billion. Those results easily beat the consensus forecasts of analysts who expected a profit of $1.70 a share and revenue of $13.55 billion. United attributed the strong Q4 results to robust air travel during the year-end holidays, and sees more growth ahead. Despite some headwinds caused by the grounding of Boeing’s (NYSE:BA) 737 MAX aircraft, United expects a full-year 2024 profit of $9 to $11 per share.

Chevron (CVX)

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American oil giant Chevron’s (NYSE:CVX) stock is cheap and getting cheaper. CVX stock is sinking on reports that its $53 billion acquisition of rival Hess (NYSE:HES) might be in jeopardy. A dispute with rival Exxon Mobil (NYSE:XOM) over an oil field in Guyana could end Chevron’s takeover of Hess. Last October, Chevron proposed to buy Hess largely to obtain the company’s Guyana stake. If the deal falls apart, Hess would be liable for a $1.70 billion break-up fee. The closing date for the takeover has been pushed back to the middle of this year, and could now be extended further.

CVX stock is down 2% on news of the problems with its Hess takeover. That brings the decline in Chevron’s stock over the last 12 months to 7%. Trading at 13 times future earnings estimates, Chevron’s stock looks undervalued at current levels. Especially for a company that has a market capitalization of nearly $300 billion. While investors might be put off by the slump in CVX stock, it is an opportunity to buy the shares on the cheap. They’re now trading 12% below their 52-week high. Plus, Chevron pays a hefty quarterly dividend of $1.63 per share, giving it a strong yield of 4.31%.

On the date of publication, Joel Baglole did not have (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.

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.

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