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2 High-Growth Stocks That Could Soar

By Daniel Sparks – Sep 25, 2019 at 1:21PM

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Both of these companies have seen significant improvement in their top and bottom lines recently -- and this momentum should continue.

With growth stocks getting slammed left and right over the last few weeks, one has to ask: Have some been oversold? Programmatic ad-buying platform The Trade Desk (TTD -0.01%) and electric-car maker Tesla (TSLA 1.22%) are two stocks that are looking particularly compelling after their recent sell-offs.

There's no guarantee either stock will soar in the coming years. But The Trade Desk and Tesla both appear to have underlying business momentum that could potentially support significant share price appreciation. Of course, in order for this to happen, both companies will need their current tailwinds to persist and their management teams to execute shrewdly.

Here's a look at both companies.

A chart showing three lines, with one seeing outsize growth

Image source: Getty Images.

The Trade Desk

Shares of The Trade Desk have been hammered recently. The stock is down 27% in the last two months. But its underlying business continues to see strong growth. In the company's second quarter, revenue rose 42% year over year as major global advertisers continued to shift more advertising dollars to programmatic.

Key growth drivers for the company's business include increased ad spend in mobile video, mobile in-app, connected TV (CTV), and audio channels. All of these channels saw ad spend rise 50% year over year or more in Q2, with CTV and audio ad spend rising 150% and 270%, respectively.

But what's particularly attractive about The Trade Desk is that this growth stock is already reporting significant profits -- and these profits are growing rapidly. For the six-month period ending June 30, net income was $38 million, up from $28 million in the first half of 2018. Non-GAAP (adjusted) net income increased from $43 million to $69 million over the same period.

Highlighting its momentum, The Trade Desk lifted its full-year view for revenue and adjusted EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization) when it reported its second-quarter results. Management now expects 2019 revenue to be "at least" $653 million, up from a previous forecast for $645 million or more. It expects adjusted EBITDA of $201 million (about 30.8% of revenue), up from $188.5 million (about 29% of revenue).


Unlike The Trade Desk, Tesla isn't consistently profitable, but its gross profit is growing quickly and its losses are narrowing as revenue soars. In addition, the automaker's uncanny growth in vehicle sales suggests the company is positioned at the epicenter of growing consumer interest in fully electric vehicles.

Fueled by the success of its Model 3, Tesla's vehicle unit sales jumped 134% year over year in Q2 -- and this growth wasn't isolated to just one quarter. Over the trailing 12 months, vehicle sales climbed 163% year over year.

Meanwhile, the company's financials have improved significantly. Tesla's trailing-12-month gross profit is $4.5 billion, compared to to $4.0 billion in 2018 and $2.2 billion in 2017. Tesla's trailing-12-month net loss was $659 million, an improvement from losses of $976 million and 2.0 billion in 2018 and 2017, respectively. The company's progress is particularly impressive on its cash flow statement, where trailing-12-month free cash flow is positive $1.4 billion, up from negative $222 million in 2018 and negative $4.1 billion in 2017.

The company expects further improvement in its financials throughout the remainder of 2019. Guiding for total deliveries to rise 45% to 65% year over year, management believes this sales growth will enable Tesla to fund its business with its own cash from operations going forward. Further, it expects to be profitable on a GAAP basis in Q3 and beyond.

With Tesla stock down 33% year to date, shares may be oversold.

Daniel Sparks has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool owns shares of and recommends Tesla and The Trade Desk. The Motley Fool has the following options: short January 2020 $125 calls on The Trade Desk and long January 2020 $60 calls on The Trade Desk. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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