In his latest column for Nasdaq.com, Validea CEO John Reese looks at high-quality blue-chip stocks that have become very cheap, thanks in part to the Federal Reserve’s quantitative easing policies.
“One of the results — or, some might say, intentions — of this huge stimulative policy was a surge in equities,” Reese writes. “And the biggest beneficiaries appears to have been smaller, speculative stocks. … It seems, not surprisingly, that by deluging financial markets with cash, the Fed has encouraged risk-taking in equity markets.”
Reese says that’s probably part of why the current bull market hasn’t “switched gears” yet. “In the typical bull, MarketWatch’s Mark Hulbert recently noted, lower-quality ‘junk’-type stocks lead the market initially, but then give way to higher-quality stocks by the time the bull is a year old, if not earlier,” Reese writes. “We’re now more than two years into this bull market, and large, quality stocks remain quite cheap compared to smaller, lower-quality plays.”
Reese says it’s not clear whether the end of QE2 will mean an immediate boost to high-quality blue chips. “But to me the bottom line is that plenty of blue chips remain very undervalued right now, and, whether the end of QE2 provides the spark or not, they aren’t likely to stay undervalued forever,” he says. He looks at five such stocks that get high marks from his Guru Strategies, each of which is based on the approach of a different investing great. Among the picks: pharma giant Sanofi-Aventis. To read the full article and see all the stocks, click here.