/Best Stocks of 2018

Best Stocks of 2018

With nearly every U.S. major stock index at or near all-time highs, it’s becoming increasingly difficult to find attractively priced growth vehicles. But not impossible: When we asked three Foolish investors to name some outstanding growth opportunities available in this frothy market, they delivered. Their picks — clinical-stage biotech Novavax (NASDAQ:NVAX), food products giant Hormel Foods Corp. (NYSE:HRL), and fast-food franchise titan Carrols Restaurant Group (NASDAQ:TAST) — all sport stellar long-term growth projections, arguably making them worthwhile buys to kick off 2018.

George Budwell (Novavax): Novavax has started to show signs of recovery after a painful 2017. The synthetic-vaccine maker’s stock is already up by 57% less than two full weeks into the new year. Even so, I think the best is yet to come for this once-forgotten biotech stock.

Why? Novavax now has two major clinical catalysts on the calendar this year that could light fires under its share price. First up, the company is expected to roll out new data for its experimental flu vaccine, known as NanoFlu, in February. In a nutshell, Novavax is attempting to bring a more consistent flu vaccine to market for older adults.

While the company hasn’t made any specific claims in regard to potential peak sales, the global flu vaccine market is estimated to worth more than $3 billion in annual sales. Given that the biotech’s market capitalization was only $627 million at the time of writing, if NanoFlu grabbed even 10% of that market, it would be a big winner for the company.


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