A lot of blue chip stocks have the blues. Sure, the Dow Jones Industrial Average is no longer in bear market territory. However, the index remains down more than 10% year to date, and nearly two-thirds of the Dow's 30 stocks are in the red.
But investors can still find some solid picks in the heavily followed index even during a period of economic uncertainty. Here are three Dow stocks you can buy without any hesitation.
OPEC+ is cutting oil production, which should result in oil prices remaining at high levels. This works to Chevron's advantage. The company is well positioned to continue buying back shares and paying an attractive dividend even if oil prices fall significantly.
That dividend is a pretty good reason to like Chevron stock all by itself. The dividend yield currently tops 3.1%. Chevron is a Dividend Aristocrat with 35 consecutive years of dividend increases. That streak will almost certainly extend into 2023 and beyond.
Chevron also has its eye on the future. Management isn't burying its head in the sand by ignoring the shift to renewable energy. Instead, the company is investing in developing renewable fuels, hydrogen, and carbon capture projects.
2. Johnson & Johnson
Johnson & Johnson's (JNJ 0.87%) low-single-digit gain so far this year normally wouldn't be anything to crow about. But in the current dismal market, it makes J&J stand out.
This performance might be surprising in light of Johnson & Johnson's Q3 results. The healthcare giant reported year-over-year sales growth of only 1.9%. Its adjusted earnings per share fell by 1.9% from the prior-year period. However, there are two main reasons why J&J stock has held up well.
First, Johnson & Johnson is widely viewed as a safe haven during challenging times. The company has been in business since 1886. It's a Dividend King, with 60 consecutive years of dividend increases.
Second, investors expect better days are on the way. Johnson & Johnson plans to spin off its slower-growing consumer health unit next year. It's also planning to acquire Abiomed. Buying the heart-pump maker should boost J&J's revenue growth.
3. UnitedHealth Group
One key factor behind UnitedHealth's gain is its solid underlying business performance. The company reported 12% year-over-year revenue growth in Q3, with adjusted earnings per share jumping 28%.
UnitedHealth's Optum unit recently acquired healthcare data and analytics company Change Healthcare. Optum also awaits the closing of its pending buyout of home healthcare provider LHC Group. Both deals expand UnitedHealth's diversification in the healthcare market.
The company should benefit from demographic trends over the long term. As the U.S. population ages, it will likely drive increased demand for UnitedHealth's Medicare Advantage plans and other healthcare services.