These S&P 500 stocks are cheap and well-liked by analysts heading into June

These S&P 500 stocks are cheap and well-liked by analysts heading into June

Online pickup orders inside an Ulta Beauty store in the Upper East Side neighborhood in New York, US, on Monday, Nov. 27, 2023.

Bing Guan | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Several stocks, ranging from a mass-market beauty retailer to a major biotech company, may be selling at attractive valuations right now.

Although stocks are wrapping up May on a strong note, this week’s declines may have created some buying opportunities for investors. All 11 sectors of the broad-market S&P 500 retreated on Wednesday, adding to investors’ concerns that the wider market may be weakening. Still, the S&P 500 is up 4.3% for the month, while the 30-stock Dow Jones Industrial Average has gained 0.9%. The Nasdaq Composite has advanced about 7.6% this month.

Using the CNBC Pro Stock Screener Tool, we searched for stocks that are considered “cheap” relative to the broader market and that meet the following criteria: 

  • Forward price-to-earnings ratio below the S&P 500’s 21
  • Forward price-to-earnings ratio below the 5-year average valuation
  • Consensus buy rating
  • Upside to analysts’ consensus price target of 25% or more

Take a look at the stocks, listed below:


Symbol Company FWD P/E P/E 5Y Avg Upside to avg PT (%)
AKAMAkamai Technologies14.707129.618525.1031
CVSCVS Health7.207815.808329.2117
DLTRDollar Tree16.544834.295831.2818
EPAMEpam Systems17.639555.316229.7219
GILDGilead Sciences9.488920.734327.4637
GMGeneral Motors4.43767.050825.8893
GPNGlobal Payments8.616565.438748.4193
HSTHost Hotels & Resorts16.570139.654428.8212
LKQLKQ Corp10.347915.317541.0769
LVSLas Vegas Sands Corp16.19242026.91741.9076
MGMMGM Resorts International14.485416.967247.0027
MTCHMatch Group13.913347.954130.0103
ULTAUlta Beauty14.550822.888832.0457
VICIVICI Properties10.431416.982825.3832

Source: LSEG

Financial services company Global Payments, which has slumped more than 20% this year, has the highest expected upside of the lot, at about 48%. The company has a low forward price-to-earnings ratio of roughly 8.6.

Global Payments beat first-quarter earnings expectations earlier this month but reported roughly in-line net revenue, leading several analysts from Jefferies to JPMorgan to lower their price targets on the stock.

“Despite cleaner headline results than recent quarters, concerns around the runway for margins beyond ’24 + the med-term EPS growth algo are unlikely to fade in the near-term,” Jefferies analyst Trevor Williams wrote in a May 1 note, maintaining his buy rating but lowering his target price by $30 to $140. “We’re encouraged by April trends (steady with 1Q), and believe more confidence in post-’24 Merchant
margins can emerge as Y/Y expansion returns in 2H.”

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Ulta Beauty also made the screen as a cheap stock that analysts are bullish on. The stock has a 14.5 forward price-to-earnings ratio and a consensus buy rating from analysts polled by FactSet. Their average price target suggests shares can climb 32%. This year, the stock is down about 21%.

Stifel recently kept its hold rating but lowered its price target on Ulta from $565 to $475, which implies 25% potential upside, slightly less than the consensus call. In a May 13 note, Stifel cited weakening U.S. mass beauty sales growth, particularly in makeup, and said that Ulta appears to be losing share to Sephora, suggesting a shift towards prestige beauty, and Amazon’s expanded product offerings. Still, it sees upside given “muted investor expectations and an undemanding valuation.”

Ulta is set to report earnings on Thursday after market close.

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