If you're looking to stock up on stocks with long-term potential, now is a great time. That's because so many promising players have seen their prices drop this year. And that's left them at very interesting valuations. Companies with solid earnings prospects and those with an extra something like a growing dividend could fare well over time.
So, where to look for such players? Healthcare is a good start. Here, Motley Fool contributors Keith Speights and Adria Cimino share two stocks that have dropped by double digits -- and make great buys today. Teladoc Health (TDOC -2.75%) is a leader in the high-growth telemedicine market. And Abbott Laboratories (ABT 0.98%) is a diversified healthcare company that's awarded investors with dividend growth year after year.
A diamond in the rough
Keith Speights (Teladoc Health): I have bad news, good news, and great news about Teladoc Health. The bad news is that the company's shares are down close to 75% year to date and nearly 90% below its all-time high. The good news is that the telehealth stock has picked up positive momentum in recent weeks, soaring more than 45% over the last month.
Now for the great news: Teladoc should have a lot more room to run. Why? For one thing, the company is making pretty good progress toward achieving profitability.
The main reason behind Teladoc's recent surge is that the company delivered surprisingly good third-quarter results. Sure, the virtual care provider remains unprofitable. However, Teladoc's bottom line is moving in the right direction. And the company anticipates continued improvement in the fourth quarter.
More importantly, Teladoc still has a massive market opportunity. Less than one-third of total U.S. covered lives currently have access to the company's virtual care products. Teladoc also has significant opportunities within its customer base to cross-sell other products.
There's plenty of competition in the virtual care market. But Teladoc stands as the clear leader with a larger customer base and a broader array of products and services. I think this beaten-down stock is a great pick for investors looking for a diamond in the rough.
An earnings track record and dividend strength
Adria Cimino (Abbott Laboratories): Abbott's strength is in its diversification. The healthcare company has four business units: medical devices, diagnostics, nutrition, and established pharmaceuticals. This range of businesses helps Abbott maintain earnings growth in various market situations.
For example, Abbott's suite of coronavirus tests has driven gains in diagnostics during the pandemic. At the same time, medical device sales slipped during certain phases of the crisis as hospitals postponed surgeries. Today, medical device sales are rising again -- and can keep revenue climbing even if coronavirus testing falls.
Speaking of medical devices, this business traditionally has been Abbott's biggest revenue driver. This is led by diabetes care. Abbott sells one of the world's leading continuous glucose monitoring systems. The FreeStyle Libre brought in $1 billion in the third quarter alone -- and sales growth of the device in the U.S. topped 40%.
Abbott has a track record of growing earnings, free cash flow, and return on invested capital over time. And the company, even in today's difficult economic environment, recently raised its full-year earnings-per-share guidance.
All of this sounds great. But the picture gets even better. Abbott belongs to the elite group known as Dividend Kings. These companies have raised their dividend for at least 50 consecutive years. This shows dividend growth is important to Abbott. So there's reason to be optimistic Abbott will continue increasing its dividend over time. And that equals passive income for you as an investor.
Now, let's talk price. Abbott shares are trading at around 19 times forward earnings estimates. That's compared to more than 27 earlier this year. At the same time, sales over the past nine months climbed in three out of four of Abbott's business. And the company continues to launch new products that should drive future earnings growth. All of this means that Abbott's shares -- down 26% this year -- look like a bargain at today's level.
Is now really the right time to buy?
It may seem scary to jump into the market when stocks have fallen so much. But it's important to remember that bear markets and economic troubles don't last forever. Strong companies can weather the storm -- and thrive down the road.
If you invest when the market is down, you have the opportunity to get in on some of these potential success stories at an excellent price. So right now is the perfect time to check out Teladoc, Abbott, and other beaten-down stocks that may boost your portfolio over time.