The economy may be heading into a recession next year. Inflation remains around 8%, and layoffs are mounting, particularly in the tech sector. Consumers have already been tightening their budgets, and they may have to cut costs even further next year. The bearish outlook on the economy has already sent many stocks into a free fall.
Shares of GoodRx Holdings (GDRX 3.28%) and Netflix (NFLX -0.68%) are both down more than 50% off their highs. But despite their recent struggles, these are two stocks that could outperform the markets next year, and here's why.
1. GoodRx Holdings
GoodRx is a business I could see doing well amid a downturn in the economy next year, even as inflation continues to rise. That's because the company's aim is to help save people money on prescription medications. Through its coupons, consumers can reduce their costs, and they don't even need to opt for a costly membership to do so.
However, year to date, the stock is down more than 80% as the company's growth rate has slowed. At less than $6, the stock is nowhere near its 52-week high of $43. Last quarter, revenue totaled $187.3 million for the period ended Sept. 30 -- down 4% year over year but still better than expected. This slowdown stems at least in part from an issue with an unnamed grocery chain, which earlier this year was not accepting discounts on certain drugs. The issue has since been resolved, but it has negatively impacted GoodRx's revenue for multiple quarters.
The company still projects revenue to decline to a range of $175 million and $180 million for the last quarter of the year. That projection includes up to a $50 million negative impact from the grocer's issue on its prescription transactions. Although the issue is technically resolved, the company is still feeling its effects. GoodRx is also focusing more on improving its margins and its bottom line, which can put revenue growth on the back burner. Last quarter, the company's net loss was $41.7 million, more than double the $18.1 million loss that GoodRx reported in the prior-year period. Here too, the company lists the grocery issue as being a key reason for the worsening bottom line.
The healthcare stock has faced challenges this year, but 2023 could be a much better one for the business; there will likely be growth opportunities ahead as consumers look for cost-saving options to keep their expenses down. And although GoodRx isn't profitable today, a focus on its bottom line should also help make the stock a more tenable investment. At less than three times revenue, GoodRx is trading at a much cheaper multiple than it has in the past:
Streaming company Netflix has been rallying of late as the company recently posted strong results that suggested the business isn't doomed after all. The company added 2.4 million subscribers in the third quarter (ended Sept. 30), and that was what mattered to investors; a couple of periods of subscriber losses had many wondering if the streaming company was simply facing too much competition and that its glory days were ending.
But it will take much more of an increase in price to offset the stock's deep losses this year, as Netflix is still down around 50% in 2022. And for it to get back to its 52-week high of over $700, the stock would need to rise by more than 130% from where it is now.
Netflix may not get back to that high anytime soon, but it can still deliver much more positive returns for investors in 2023. The introduction of an ad-based plan should help attract more price-conscious consumers, especially those trying to keep their budgets down and who may be trying to keep multiple subscriptions. At just $6.99, the new plan will undercut its rivals and could be a way to boost its overall subscriber numbers even higher.
The company is also cracking down on password sharing, which can drive more revenue growth, either by people paying to share their accounts with others or simply having people sign up for their own accounts, and having a cheaper ad-based option could make that a more tenable option for consumers.
Netflix is heading into 2023 with a couple of catalysts that should help strengthen its financials, as up until now, neither ads nor password sharing looked to be a priority for the business. At 26 times earnings, this isn't the cheapest the stock has been but with potentially more growth on the horizon and a greater focus on keeping its costs down, that multiple could come down, and that's why buying the stock today could be a good move for investors.