In 2020 and 2022, all the major market indices experienced two bear markets. In between, they enjoyed a period of incredible euphoria. This year they’re all running higher again. To say volatility is ruling the markets is an understatement. Despite the volatility, there are still growth stocks that will put investors in good shape.
While corrections are painful, they are part of the ebb and flow of investing. Savvy investors understand it’s when things look darkest that the best investment opportunities are found. Warren Buffett said it best: “We simply attempt to be fearful when others are greedy and to be greedy only when others are fearful.”
But it’s not easy being a contrarian. Going against the crowd and conventional wisdom is difficult until you realize bull markets always follow bear markets. Bull markets also tend to be measured in years, whereas corrections are measured in months. That means you can profit from the volatility on display.
The following three growth stocks to buy are companies you can pick up today and look back 10 years from now without regret.
A bet on Visa (NYSE:V) is one on the resilience of the U.S. consumer and economy over time. As the largest payment processor by far, Visa will grow as the economy expands and people keep buying stuff.
Obviously, it won’t be a smooth ride higher. Because recessions and depressions force individuals to make hard choices about where and when they spend money, Visa will certainly face lagging periods. But over time those valleys smooth out and the trend remains ever upward.
Payments volume was $3 trillion in Visa’s fiscal third quarter, up 9% on a currency-adjusted basis from last year. Visa processed $8.9 trillion worth of payments over the first nine months. In contrast, rival Mastercard (NYSE:MA) processed $1.65 trillion in purchases last quarter. There are 4.2 billion Visa cards in circulation while Mastercard has 3.2 billion cards out there.
While an economic downturn will weigh on Visa, its downside is protected. It doesn’t get into the lending side of things. That means the payment processor is unaffected if consumers default on credit and loan payments.
Visa is an easy choice for a regret-free stock to own for the next decade and beyond.
Axon Enterprise (AXON)
Stun gun maker Axon Enterprise (NASDAQ:AXON) is the next stock you won’t look back on with regret in 2033. The maker of Taser energy weapons, body cameras, and evidence database management tools is taxiing on a long runway of growth.
The Taser remains Axon’s moneymaker. Segment revenue jumped 14% last quarter to $154 million. As the public and law enforcement demand the deployment of less-than-lethal options, the Taser becomes a central component in a police department’s arsenal. It’s a lucrative business, too, as gross margins run north of 60%.
That’s fairly remarkable for a physical product like the energy weapon, considering Axon’s cloud and services margins are about 70%. The sensor segment, which hosts body cams, in-car cameras, and other related products, also posted healthy 53% gross margins this past quarter.
What is truly impressive is how agencies keep coming back for more. Recurring revenue for the period surged 52% to $559 million. It shows just how sticky Axon’s dominant business is. Once a company integrates its comprehensive tools and services, extricating itself from a competitor is difficult.
Demand for its energy weapons, cameras to record what’s happening, and database management systems to log and store the evidence is only going to grow over time. It’s therefore part of a pack of growth stocks that are due to outperform.
Walgreens Boots Alliance (WBA)
Where Visa and Axon instill confidence, Walgreens Boots Alliance’s (NASDAQ:WBA) stock chart does not offer up regret-free feelings. The stock is down 43% in 2023 and is off 70% over the last five years. It’s been a long, painful slog lower for shareholders.
Part of that was due to the pandemic. Although healthcare stocks tend to be resilient in all kinds of markets, a business based on foot traffic is going to suffer whenever the government imposes lockdowns. Although deemed an essential business, customers still stayed away in droves.
The pandemic showed the need for greater digital options. It reintroduced curbside order pickup that it previously discontinued due to little demand. Online orders are now ready for in-store pickup in as little as 30 minutes.
Its decision to not sell its U.K.-based pharmacy chain Boots and the beauty care products company No7 Beauty also upset investors. They wanted Walgreens to focus on just its U.S. healthcare operations, but both are healthy businesses and won’t drag down performance. Walgreens is investing in the U.S. market: it owns almost two-thirds of Village MD, expanding Walgreens’s reach into primary, specialty care, and urgent care.
At a crazy five times earnings estimates and going for fractions of its sales and book value, the market seemingly gave up on the stock. That’s a mistake you can cash in on. Even small operational improvements will get magnified at these discounted levels. It also has a new CEO.
In 10 years, you will be happy that you picked up this stock that the rest of the market threw in the trash. This helps solidify as one of those growth stocks to buy.
On the date of publication, Rich Duprey held a LONG position in WBA stock. The opinions expressed in this article are those of the writer, subject to the InvestorPlace.com Publishing Guidelines.