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3 Top Growth Stocks to Buy Today

As the world looks towards being on the other end of the COVID-19 pandemic, financial growth is all around us.



As the world increasingly finds itself on the other end of the COVID-19 pandemic, financial growth is all around us. We’re currently riding a four-week winning streak in the market, where the S&P 500 index has gained about 7%.

The U.S. economy is firing on all cylinders, as vaccine distribution is expanding and COVID-19-related business and travel restrictions are being lifted. U.S. GDP is expected to post better than 6% GDP growth in the first quarter and corporate earnings are on track to be up more than 30% from the previous year.

This bullish environment is being supported by government stimulus for individuals and small businesses, in addition to accommodative monetary policy from the Federal Reserve. The Fed has repeatedly said that it will keep short-term interest rates at or near zero, in order to support a full post-pandemic recovery of the U.S. labor market.

On the other hand, there are signs that inflationary pressures are rising. The core producer price index increased by 3.1% in March and businesses are looking to passing along higher input costs to customers. While consumer prices grew just 1.6% excluding food and energy last month, we believe that inflation is the one bogey that can put the brakes on the recent market rally.

That’s because it’s also the Federal Reserve’s job to ensure that inflation does not run rampant. If prices continue to rise, Chair Jerome Powell & Co. could be pressured to increase short-term interest rates sooner, rather than later.

However, investors should not fear the potential for any temporary pullback. A decline in the stock market can lead to excellent opportunities in finding the best growth stocks, and above-average growth is the best antidote for keeping up with inflation.

We’ve found three such stocks to watch today, which we highlight below:

The Best Stocks to Watch Today

Best Technology Stock

Par Technology (PAR)

The company provides technology solutions for two distinct sets of customers: government contracts and the hospitality industry.

The stock recently changed hands around $75.92 and sports a market capitalization of about $1.9 billion. It is a component of the Russell 2000 index, a key proxy for small-cap investors.

While many operators in the hospitality industry have struggled in the past year, Par Technology is still delivering impressive growth. The company increased revenue more than 10% in the fourth quarter of 2020 and also posted 67% bookings growth for its point-of-sale software.

That kind of top-line growth potential has Par on the path toward future profitability. Both empirical data and anecdotal evidence have shown that buying a company on the cusp of generating sustainable profits can boost investment performance.

Par is also looking to augment its growth through acquisitions. Earlier this month, management said that it bought privately-held Punchh, for $500 million of cash and stock. The new business has industry-leading growth in supporting customer loyalty programs and expands the company’s presence in the restaurant industry.

Back in March, Sidoti upgraded the stock from Neutral to Buy. All five active analysts tracked by TipRanks rate Par a Buy and the average price target of $101.75 represents 34% upside potential.

Top technology stock today

In addition, the company carries a Smart Score of 10/10 on TipRanks. This proprietary score utilizes Big Data to rank stocks based on 8 key factors that have historically been a precursor of future outperformance.

par technology top Score

On top of the positive aspects mentioned already, the Smart Score indicates that shares have seen insider buying, in addition to improving sentiment from investors and financial bloggers.

Best Biotech Stock

ImmunityBio (IBRX)

The company develops immunotherapies to combat cancer and infectious diseases. ImmunityBio recently merged with NantKwest and a lead product of the combined company looks to treat bladder cancer.

The stock recently traded around $18.09 and has a market capitalization of about $6.7 billion. It is a component of the S&P Biotech sector SPDR and the Russell 2000 index.

In February, management said that Phase 2/3 clinical trials for its treatment Anktiva showed a complete response. ImmunityBio has received Breakthrough and Fast Track status for the product in this indication. The company is also running a Phase 2 study for lung cancer with Anktiva, in addition to testing its efficacy against pancreatic cancer.

What makes ImmunityBio a top biotech stock is that it has many irons in the fire, offering multiple potential avenues of future growth. The company is currently running more than 20 Phase 2 or Phase 3 trials.

In addition, management said earlier this month that initial Phase 1 data from its COVID-19 vaccine candidate showed a 10-fold increase in T-cell response from a single injection. The next step is a clinical trial with 80 participants that is expected to be fully enrolled in the second quarter.

ImmunityBio is also running early-stage trials for prostate cancer. In March, management said that its developmental vaccine developed T-cell responses for more than one targeted antigen in 94% of patients.

The stock is currently flying under the market’s radar and has just one activist analyst tracked by TipRanks. Joseph Catanzaro has a Buy rating and $25 price target, reflecting 38.2% upside potential.

Analyst recommended best stock

Even though ImmunityBio currently has limited analyst coverage, Catanzaro is considered one of the top names on Wall Street, which adds weight to the call. TipRanks rates him in the top-4% of the more than 7,400 analysts tracked. 

Best Electric Vehicle Stock

Workhorse (WKHS)

The company serves the commercial transportation market and is looking to change the future of vehicle delivery. Workhorse has developed an electric truck that it distributes through Ryder System (R) and even a delivery drone that’s dubbed HorseFly.

The stock recently changed hands around $12.46 and sports a market capitalization of about $1.7 billion. It is a component of the Russell 2000 index.

The company reportedly missed out on a contract with the U.S. Postal Service to deliver electric deliver trucks back in February, although the validity of the deal that was awarded to its competitor is currently under question. Because it’s temporarily down on its luck, Workhorse may well be the best EV stock to buy now.

That’s because the company has a backlog of over 8,000 vehicles. Management has guided that it will deliver 1,800 of those trucks in this year, which is a growth trajectory leading to a consensus analyst estimate that Workhorse can generate over $300 million of revenue in 2022.

The company also has a hidden asset in that it’s the second largest investor in electric pickup truck manufacturer, Lordstown Motors (RIDE). Workhorse owns 9.3% of Lordstown, a stake that’s currently worth about $160 million.

In addition, Wall Street sees value in the stock. Earlier this month, B. Riley initiated coverage of the company with a Buy rating, stating:

“We believe Workhorse has the potential to gain early footing with key customers as it ramps up production and sales this year. The company will be beating to market most of the electric competition focused on the delivery space by quarters or years with its C-Series ramp expected this year, and we believe the larger size cargo offers differentiation in the space relative to the smaller-volume vans coming from the large auto OEMs and upstarts.”

Of the seven active analysts tracked by TipRanks, the average price target of $21.20 represents 70.1% upside potential.

Top EV Stock today

Like Par Technology, Workhorse also has a Smart Score of 10/10. On top of the positive aspects mentioned already, the Smart Score indicates that Workhorse has seen improving sentiment from hedge funds and financial bloggers.

Focus on Growth

Investors are always looking for growth; but it’s more important than ever, when stocks are near record highs and inflationary pressures are rising. With U.S. GDP approaching double-digit growth in 2021 and the Federal Reserve likely to keep short-term interest rates low for the next several quarters, these three names are among the best stocks to watch today.

Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this article are solely those of the featured analysts. The content is intended to be used for informational purposes only. It is very important to do your own analysis before making any investment.

The post 3 Top Growth Stocks to Buy Today appeared first on TipRanks Financial Blog.

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COVID-19 may never go away, but practical herd immunity is within reach

It is unlikely that we will reach full herd immunity for COVID-19. However, we are likely to reach a practical kind of herd immunity through vaccination.

The level of immunity needed — either through vaccination or infection — for practical herd immunity is uncertain, but may be quite high. (Shutterstock)

When people say that we won’t reach “herd immunity” to COVID-19, they are usually referring to an ideal of “full” population immunity: when so many people are immune that, most of the time, there is no community transmission.

With full herd immunity, most people will never be exposed to the virus. Even those who are not vaccinated are protected, because an introduction is so unlikely to reach them: it will sputter out, because so many others are immune — as is the case now with diseases like polio and mumps.

The fraction of the population that needs to be immune in order for the population to have “full” herd immunity depends on the transmissibility of the virus in the population, and on the control measures in place.

It is unlikely we’ll reach full herd immunity for COVID-19.

For one thing, it appears that immunity to COVID-19 acquired either by vaccination or infection wanes over time. In addition, SARS-CoV-2 will continue to evolve. Over time, variants that can infect people with immunity (even if this only results in mild disease) will have a selective advantage, just as until now selection has mainly favoured variants with higher transmission potential.

Electron micrograph of a yellow virus particle with green spikes, against a blue background.
The B.1.1.7 variant of the SARS-CoV-2 virus. Over time, variants of concern will likely continue to emerge. NIAID, CC BY

Also, our population is a composition of different communities, workplaces and environments. In some of these, transmission risk might be high enough and/or immunity low enough to allow larger outbreaks to occur, even if overall in the population we have high vaccination and low transmission.

Finally, SARS-CoV-2 can infect other animals. This means that other animal populations may act as a “reservoir,” allowing the virus to be reintroduced to the human population.

Practical herd immunity

Nonetheless, we are likely to reach a practical kind of herd immunity through vaccination. In practical herd immunity, we can reopen to near-normal levels of activity without needing widespread distancing or lockdowns. This would be a profound change from the situation we have been in for the past 18 months.

Practical herd immunity does not mean that we never see any COVID-19. It will likely be with us, just at low enough levels that we will not need to have widespread distancing measures in place to protect the health-care system.

Read more: COVID-19 variants FAQ: How did the U.K., South Africa and Brazil variants emerge? Are they more contagious? How does a virus mutate? Could there be a super-variant that evades vaccines?

What level of immunity (either through vaccination or infection) we need for practical herd immunity is uncertain, but it may be quite high. The original strain of SARS-CoV-2 was highly transmissible and transmission is thought to be higher still for some variants of concern.

Empty vials of Pfizer's COVID-19 vaccine
To achieve two-thirds immunity, 90 per cent of the eligible population would need to be vaccinated or infected naturally. (AP Photo/John Locher)

The amount of immunity we need will also depend on what level of controls we are willing to maintain indefinitely. Continued masking, contact tracing, symptomatic and asymptomatic testing and outbreak control measures will mean we will require less immunity than we would without these in place.

Some estimates suggest that we may need two thirds of the population to be protected either by successful vaccination or natural infection. If 90 per cent of the population is eligible for vaccination, and vaccines are 85 per cent effective against infection, we can obtain this two thirds with about 90 per cent of the eligible population being vaccinated or infected naturally.

The United Kingdom has already exceeded these rates in some age groups. Higher rates are even better, because there is still uncertainty about the level of transmissibility and vaccine efficacy against infection (although research shows they are very good against severe disease). We don’t want to discover that we do not have enough immunity through vaccination and have another serious wave of infection.

Emerging variants

A sticker reading 'I'm COVID-19 vaccinated' from Vancouver Coastal Health
Booster vaccinations will hopefully allow us to maintain long-term practical herd immunity against future variants of COVID-19. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward

Higher vaccine uptake will mean there are fewer infections before we reach practical herd immunity. The remaining unvaccinated individuals will be safer, protected indirectly by the immunity of those around them. Outbreaks will be smaller and rarer, and there will be fewer opportunities for vaccine escape variants to arise and spread.

That said, variants of SARS-CoV-2 will continue to emerge, and selection will favour variants that escape our immunity. Vaccine developers will continue to broaden the spectrum of the vaccines that are available, and boosters will hopefully allow us to maintain long-term practical herd immunity.

It’s possible that an immune escape variant will emerge that is severe enough, and transmissible enough, that it will cause a new pandemic for which we do not have even practical herd immunity. But barring that, while we may not be free of COVID-19, we can be confident that in the not-too-distant future it will be manageable when we return to near-normal life.

Caroline Colijn's research group receives funding from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada, Genome British Columbia, the Michael Smith Foundation for Health Research, the Public Health Agency of Canada and Canada 150 Research Chair program of the Federal Government of Canada.

Paul Tupper's research group receives funding from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada.

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UK Government Adviser Says Mask Mandates Should Continue “Forever”

UK Government Adviser Says Mask Mandates Should Continue "Forever"

Authored by Paul Joseph Watson via Summit News,

A UK government adviser and former Communist Party member Susan Michie says that mask mandates and social distancing should…



UK Government Adviser Says Mask Mandates Should Continue "Forever"

Authored by Paul Joseph Watson via Summit News,

A UK government adviser and former Communist Party member Susan Michie says that mask mandates and social distancing should continue “forever” and that people should adopt such behaviour just as they did with wearing seatbelts.

Michie, who is a Professor of Health Psychology at UCL and a leading member of SAGE, said such control measures should become part of people’s “normal” routine behaviour.

"Vaccines are a really important part of pandemic control but it is only one part. [A] test, trace and isolate system, [as well as] border controls, are really essential. And the third thing is people’s behaviour. That is, the behaviour of social distancing, of… making sure there’s good ventilation [when you’re indoors], or if there’s not, wearing face masks, and [keeping up] hand and surface hygiene."

"We will need to keep these going in the long term, and that will be good not only for Covid but also to reduce other [diseases] at a time when the NHS is [struggling]… I think forever, to some extent…"

"I think there’s lots of different behaviours that we have changed in our lives. We now routinely wear seatbelts – we didn’t use to. We now routinely pick up dog poo in the parks – we didn’t use to. When people see that there is a threat and there is something they can do to reduce that [to protect] themselves, their loved ones and their communities, what we have seen over this last year is that people do that."

Michie’s comments once again emphasize how many scientific advisers have become drunk on COVID-19 power and never want to relinquish it.

“Unsurprisingly, Channel 5 News made absolutely no effort to scrutinise these claims. The programme’s presenter raised no objection to the idea that mask-wearing and social distancing could continue “forever”, resorting only to friendly laughter,” writes Michael Curzon.

“Professor Michie’s co-panellist, a fellow scientist at UCL, Dr Shikta Das, said:

“I think Susan has made a very good point here,” adding that the vaccine roll-out has created a “false sense of security”.

She concluded:

“I don’t think we are yet ready to unlock.”

How’s all that for balance!

Perhaps unsurprisingly, Michie is known to be a long-time Communist hardliner and was so zealous in her beliefs she garnered the nickname “Stalin’s nanny.”

Her sentiment echoes that of fellow government adviser Professor Neil Ferguson, who once acknowledged that he was surprised authorities were able to “get away with” the same draconian measures that Communist China imposed at the start of the pandemic.

“[China] is a communist one-party state, we said. We couldn’t get away with [lockdown] in Europe, we thought… and then Italy did it. And we realised we could,” said Ferguson.

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Tyler Durden Sat, 06/12/2021 - 11:30

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Venezuela Says US Sanctions Blocking COVID Vaccines: ‘Global Health System’ As Geopolitical Weapon

Venezuela Says US Sanctions Blocking COVID Vaccines: ‘Global Health System’ As Geopolitical Weapon

Authored by Brett Wilkins via via,

Venezuelan Vice President Delcy Rodríguez has accused the US-backed international financia



Venezuela Says US Sanctions Blocking COVID Vaccines: 'Global Health System' As Geopolitical Weapon

Authored by Brett Wilkins via via,

Venezuelan Vice President Delcy Rodríguez has accused the US-backed international financial system of blocking the country's access to Covid-19 vaccines under the COVAX program, even though Venezuela has paid all but $10 million of the $120 million it owes.

Appearing in a televised address, Rodríguez said Venezuela was unable to pay the remaining $10 million because it was being blocked from transferring funds to the Switzerland-based GAVI Vaccine Alliance, which directs COVAX. "The financial system that also hides behind the U.S. lobby has the power to block resources that can be used to immunize the population of Venezuela," she said.

Via Reuters

Venezuelan Foreign Minister Jorge Arreaza tweeted a letter from COVAX stating that it "received notification from UBS Bank" that four payments, totaling just over $4.6 million, were "blocked and under investigation."

Arreaza said that "Venezuela has paid all of its commitments," adding that "the bank has arbitrarily blocked" the country's final payments and calling the situation "a crime."

The vice president and foreign minister's remarks follow accusations from Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro last week that "organizations of US imperialism" are engaged in an effort to stop vaccine producers from selling doses to the country.

"Venezuela might be the only country in the world that is subject to a persecution against its right to freely purchase vaccines," said Maduro, according to Venezuelanalysis. "Venezuela is besieged so that it cannot buy vaccines."

A mural in Caracas symbolically shows Venezuela and Russia uniting to defeat the coronavirus, with the caption: "We will beat Covid-19 together." Image: AFP via Getty

Successive US administrations have targeted Venezuela with economic sanctions that critics say have devastated the nation's once-thriving economy and have caused tremendous suffering for the poor and working-class people whose dramatic uplift was once hailed as the great success of the Bolivarian Revolution launched under the late President Hugo Chávez. 

According to a 2019 report from the Center for Economic and Policy Research, a progressive think tank based in Washington, D.C., as many as 40,000 Venezuelans have died due to sanctions, which have made it much more difficult for millions of people to obtain food, medicine, and other necessities. 

Maduro also denounced the World Health Organization (WHO) for its role in delaying vaccine delivery to Venezuela. The president had expected "many millions" of the Covid-19 jabs to be delivered in July and August. "The COVAX system owes a debt to Venezuela," asserted Maduro. "We made a deposit in April and we are waiting for the vaccines."

That $64 million deposit to GAVI came after a rare deal between the Maduro administration and Juan Guaidó, the coup leader recognized by the United States and dozens of other nations as Venezuela's legitimate head of state despite never having been elected.

Adept at circumventing US interference in its affairs, Venezuela turned to China, Russia, and Cuba to launch its mass vaccination program, which aims to inoculate 70% of the population this year. Earlier this month, the country reached a deal to buy and locally manufacture the Russian EpiVacCorona vaccine. Venezuela has also already acquired about three million doses of the Russian Sputnik V and Chinese Sinopharm jabs, and last month began clinical trials on Cuba's Adbala vaccine.

Compared to other nations in the region, Venezuela has reported a very low rate of coronavirus infections and deaths. According to Johns Hopkins University's Coronavirus Resource Center, there have been nearly 248,000 reported cases and 2,781 deaths in the country of 28.5 million people during the ongoing pandemic. Neighboring Colombia, with just over 50 million people, has reported more than 3.6 million cases and over 94,000 deaths.

Tyler Durden Sat, 06/12/2021 - 16:30

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