Make no mistake -- it's been a tough year for growth stocks. The growth-heavy Nasdaq Composite Index is down 24% year to date, and some individual companies are down 50%, 60%, or even 80% from their all-time highs.
That said, growth stocks won't be out of favor forever. And when they start roaring back to life, investors will want to own the best names.
I see these five growth stocks as solid candidates to lead this now-out-of-favor group back to its former heights.
Zoom Video Communications
Most of us became acquainted with Zoom Video Communications (ZM 1.40%) during the pandemic as all manner of interactions shifted from in-person to online. However, Zoom isn't simply a pandemic one-hit-wonder. It's profitable and generated $1.5 billion in free cash flow over the last 12 months. It even boasts a solid return on equity of 24.5%.
What's more, analysts expect Zoom to grow steadily over the next two years. Consensus estimates are for the company to increase revenues by between 11% and 13%. That's a far cry from the more than 300% revenue growth the company delivered in 2020 and 2021, but those rates were never sustainable for the long term.
Trading at a price-to-earnings ratio of 25.8, Zoom is the cheapest it's been in years. Investors should take notice.
The number of monthly active users of Spotify Technology's (SPOT 1.05%) audio streaming service grew 19% year over year in the first quarter to 428 million. Premium subscriptions totaled 182 million, up 15%.
Despite that solid growth in its key metrics, its shares are down 52% year to date amid the tech sector rout. In Spotify's case, the selloff seems overdone, and Chief Executive Officer Daniel Ek must agree: He bought $50 million worth of Spotify shares in May. Needless to say, he'll be motivated to deliver a solid quarter when the company reports earnings on Wednesday.
Tesla (TSLA 1.37%) certainly meets the definition of a monster growth stock. Despite supply chain challenges, it continues to ramp up its electric vehicle (EV) production, boosting its revenue and earnings.
Tesla reported another solid quarter last week. Revenue in Q2 surged 42% year over year to $16.9 billion, though that was slightly below estimates. However, its adjusted earnings per share of $2.27 beat the consensus expectation of $1.81.
Most consumers know Lululemon Athletica (LULU 0.87%) for its premium yoga apparel, but the retailer's diversifying its product offerings. It expanded into the footwear category in its most recent quarter with the launch of its Blissfeel running shoe. Its men's apparel segment registered a three-year compound annual growth rate of 30%, outpacing the women's apparel segment, which grew at a 24% clip.
Its revenue growth indicates that Lululemon continues to find new customers, and its impressive 38% return on equity and 21.6% operating margin give me confidence in management.
Duolingo (DUOL -0.67%) helps people of all ages learn new languages by utilizing gamification -- making the daunting task easier by dividing it into small, manageable, and fun levels. Along the way, users of the app are rewarded with shareable badges to show off their progress.
With a market cap of only $3.7 billion, Duolingo is relatively small, and its focus at this stage is still on growing its user base and revenue. As of the end of Q1 (its most recently reported quarter), Duolingo had 49.2 million monthly active users and 2.9 million paid subscribers.
The company generated $276 million in revenue over the last four reported quarters and is growing revenue by 47% year over year. What's more, analysts expect its revenue to grow by 41% in 2022 and 27% next year.
It's not for the faint of heart, but Duolingo is a name investors should keep in mind when looking for a long-term growth stock to add to their portfolio.