Stock Splits 2024: 3 Stocks That Could Follow in Walmart’s Footsteps

Stocks to buy

Walmart (NYSE:WMT) recently surprised the market by splitting its stock 3-for-1. That means for every one WMT share you own you will now have three. The announcement was the first time in over 20 years that the retailer split its shares. More stock splits in 2024 could be coming.

For those who don’t know a stock split is a corporate action where a company divides its existing shares into multiple shares to boost the liquidity of the shares. Although the number of shares outstanding increases by a specific multiple, the total dollar value of the shares remains the same, meaning the split does not alter the company’s market capitalization. This action often makes the stock more accessible to a broader range of investors by reducing the price per share.

Because the purpose of the split was to make its stock more affordable for Walmart employees to buy, we may see more high-priced stocks follow suit. The three companies below are ripe for stock splits in 2024.

Ulta Beauty (ULTA)

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At $554 a share, Ulta Beauty (NASDAQ:ULTA) is primed for a price cut via a stock split. The personal care and cosmetics retailer has grown to become the largest specialty beauty retailer in the U.S. with nearly 1,375 stores in all 50 states. 

Ulta has been aggressive in returning value to shareholders. Although it doesn’t pay a dividend, the beauty retailer has been repurchasing shares. After the fiscal third quarter report, Ulta said it would buy back $950 million worth of shares instead of its previous guidance of $900 million worth of shares. A stock split would make ULTA stock as attainable as its makeup.

Beauty supplies tend to be resilient in both good and bad economies. An affordable luxury, consumers will continue to buy such products despite hard times. There is even a name for it: the Lipstick Effect. Because consumers can’t afford to buy upscale goods they purchase smaller indulgences instead.

Since its IPO in 2007, Ulta Beauty generated returns in excess of 1,603% versus a 239% return by the S&P 500. Bringing its stock down to an affordable luxury range would generate even greater investor interest in this high-growth company.

Broadcom (AVGO)

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Broadcom (NASDAQ:AVGO) would be a perfect candidate for a stock split in 2024. The move would align with other tech stocks that split their shares two years ago. Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) and Alphabet (NASDAQ:GOOG, NASDAQ:GOOGL) were among those splitting their stock then and the chipmaker can afford to do the same now. This makes it one of those potential stock splits for 2024.

At just under $1,400 per share, it is ready. AVGO stock is up 135% in the last 12 months and 412% over the last five years. The original Broadcom stock was founded in 1991 and split its shares on three separate occasions. It was acquired by Avago in 2016 but kept the Broadcom name (and the Avago ticker symbol). Since then, it hasn’t split shares at all.

The new Broadcom has been something of a serial acquirer itself, making numerous software acquisitions over the past few years. Among those were the software businesses from CA, Symantec, and Brocade. It most recently completed its acquisition of VMWare last November.

Broadcom’s network and server solutions for data centers are optimized for artificial intelligence (AI). That blends well with the AI chips it is developing as well. AI is a fast-growing business and generated $1.5 billion in revenue for the company last quarter. 

Broadcom is well on its way toward trillion-dollar status and a stock split would make AVGO stock more accessible to all.

Microsoft (MSFT)

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Tech giant Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) is the cheapest stock of the three at only $415 a share but even it could split its shares. The company has nine other splits in its history, so it is not unheard of, but the last one was back in 2003. Since then, MSFT stock has grown 1,560% but including reinvested dividends would boost its total return to almost 2,600%. In comparison, the broad market index has but an 812% total return.

The company just delivered impressive second-quarter earnings. Sales surged 18% from the year-ago period to $62 billion as AI pervaded throughout all of its products and services now. CEO Satya Nadella says half of all Fortune 500 companies are using Microsoft’s Azure AI models now and the cloud services platform has grown to 53,000 AI customers.

Microsoft is the richest company on the market with a $3.1 trillion valuation. It ended its fiscal second quarter with $81 billion in cash. Profits of $22 billion were up 33% from last year. This is a tech stock firing on all cylinders. Investors ought to consider MSFT stock for their portfolios, no matter if it splits its stock or not.

On the date of publication, Rich Duprey did not hold (either directly or indirectly) any positions in the securities mentioned in this article. The opinions expressed in this article are those of the writer, subject to the InvestorPlace.com Publishing Guidelines.

Rich Duprey has written about stocks and investing for the past 20 years. His articles have appeared on Nasdaq.com, The Motley Fool, and Yahoo! Finance, and he has been referenced by U.S. and international publications, including MarketWatch, Financial Times, Forbes, Fast Company, USA Today, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Cheddar News, The Boston Globe, L’Express, and numerous other news outlets.

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