The stock market is in a full bull run to finish 2020, and the Nasdaq Composite (^IXIC 0.45%) is enjoying an amazing streak of strong performance. Investors have been excited about the prospects for the U.S. economy in the hopes that the COVID-19 pandemic will soon be under control, and that's driven a lot of folks back into the highest-growth stocks in the market. As of 2:50 p.m. EST, the Nasdaq was up half a percent, which was enough to get it even further into all-time record territory.
Earnings have been a key driver of the Nasdaq's performance this week, and today, DocuSign (DOCU 4.83%) added its name to the list of big risers following its most recent quarterly report. Yet even some stalwarts are posting gains, with Qualcomm (QCOM 0.02%) getting some buying interest in the wake of the new 5G revolution.
Everyone's signing up with DocuSign
Shares of DocuSign climbed 5% late Friday afternoon after having been up much more sharply earlier in the session. The electronic signature specialist delivered great results in its latest quarter, continuing its momentum as 2021 approaches.
DocuSign's numbers were impressive. Revenue jumped 53% from year-ago levels, and billings rose at an even faster 63% pace. DocuSign doubled its adjusted earnings per share year over year, with free cash flow going positive.
DocuSign attributed the solid gains to a number of operational highlights. The latest release of its Agreement Cloud platform shows investors that DocuSign is good for more than just signatures, as the company tries to expand to cover all aspects of preparing, managing, and storing corporate and legal agreements.
Investors were also looking closely at DocuSign's guidance, and they generally liked what they saw. With revenue slated to rise to $404 million to $408 million in the fourth quarter, it looks like the company should be able to keep growing even if the pandemic starts to fade in the months to come.
Qualcomm gets a boost
Elsewhere, chipmaker Qualcomm's stock was higher by nearly 5%. The well-known tech giant has been a big player in wireless technology since the 3G days, and the latest upgrades to 5G are spelling a brand new wave of growth for the San Diego-based company.
Wall Street analysts seem to agree. Analysts at Piper Sandler came out with their latest report on Qualcomm, and while they kept their rating on the stock neutral, they boosted their price target by $10 per share to $150.
It's hard to overstate the opportunity that 5G represents for Qualcomm. The company believes that it will be able to sell between 450 million and 550 million 5G-enabled devices in 2021. That's a roughly 150% increase from the previous year, and with a forward earnings multiple in the low 20s, it's difficult to say that Qualcomm shares completely reflect the growth opportunity lying directly ahead of the chipmaker.
Look for solid growth
The Nasdaq's strength in 2020 has come from companies that have overcome challenges to produce consistent and accelerating growth. As 2021 approaches, prospects for many Nasdaq-listed companies will only get better. Smart investors should keep their eyes open now to identify the best prospects for the year ahead.