In this very special Action Alerts PLUS Daily Rundown, Chris and Bob break down the top three stocks for AAP's newest members.
CHRIS VERSACE: Good morning, Action Alerts PLUS members. As this airs, Bob and I will be headed home hot off yesterday's members only call, so we wanted to do a special rundown geared to our newest members and the stocks to help you get started with the AARP portfolio.
Now, during yesterday's call, we picked CBOE Global Markets as our top stock for new members. Bob, remind us why we like SIBO.
BOB LANG: Boy, we really do like the CBOE here. It's officially the biggest options exchange in the world here. The stock has been really strong in 2022. It's up near an all-time high. It's actually up today when the markets are getting hammered here on Tuesday. Stock is up about 1 and 1/2 percent.
But we like it because the stock fundamentally has been producing some tremendous metrics. I think yesterday they came out with their fourth consecutive record month of metrics for trading. And as you know, they just keep coming out with new products, very innovative products.
More recently, they came out with everyday expiration on the S&P 500 or the SPY, which is interesting. So every single day, Chris, you have a S&P 500 or SPY expiration every single day. So it's really done a tremendous amount of contraction and volatility for the SPY, but also offered a lot of opportunity for traders and investors to hedge their positions on a regular basis, on a daily basis.
It's really astonishing. They've done this with the NASDAQ as well too, three days a week with the NASDAQ. They're going to be going to five days a week sometime in 2023. The Russell 2000 as well too. So the more products they put out, Chris, the more opportunities for SIBO to make income and make revenue.
CHRIS VERSACE: Right. And I know that one of the reasons we like CBOE is because their products, their options in particular, help investors tamp down market volatility.
BOB LANG: That's right.
CHRIS VERSACE: But they also allow them, as you like to say, get protection in volatile markets. And we don't see that really ending anytime soon, do we?
BOB LANG: No, we don't. And some of the competitors for CBOE, which include the ICE, which owns here the New York Stock Exchange, the NASDAQ, and a few other companies out in Europe, have also ramped up their businesses as well too to try to compete with the CBOE, and CME as well too.
So as they're ramping up their business, they're seeing the opportunities that the CBOE has with options and protecting portfolios. I think the most ideal product that the CBOE has, Chris, is the VIX, the volatility index, and all the different products that are being offered out there for hedgers to go ahead and protect their portfolios.
It's really a genius move. They make money going in. They make money going out. So whether you're buying or selling. And as options volume starts to hit record levels over and over and over again, and they have been for the past 4 and 1/2 months, we're seeing CBOE's record numbers continue on as well too.
CHRIS VERSACE: Right. So we continue to like that name well into 2023.
BOB LANG: Yes, we do.
CHRIS VERSACE: All right. Now, let's turn to another company that I want to talk about, one of my favorites, Vulcan Materials. And you know why I like this, Bob. It's because of the infrastructure bill that we have and the starting of the flows starting to move-- sorry, the flow of funds for that starting and the pickup that we're going to see.
What I like about it, though, is no matter what the projects are, you're going to need the aggregates that Vulcan Material produces. So it's not as if we're tied just to airports. We're not tied just to street or highway construction. You need this for all of it. So it's really a rising tide that should lift demand for Vulcan Materials.
BOB LANG: Yes. And the chart is not in a bad shape either. We looked at two names when we were trying to decide which infrastructure name to do. We were looking at Marietta Materials--
CHRIS VERSACE: That's right.
BOB LANG: --MLM, and this one, Vulcan Materials. And they're really similar looking charts. However, back in the late fall, Chris, we saw Vulcan Materials diverge away from Marietta Materials. And actually, it went up when Martin Marietta Materials went down. So I think that we picked the right name.
CHRIS VERSACE: Oh, I think so.
BOB LANG: We were very lucky and fortunate in that regard. But I think the chart looks really strong for Vulcan Materials over the long term. It's only within about spitting distance of an all-time high, if you can believe that. So these material names are just getting a lot of demand, a lot of money flows coming into the stocks.
CHRIS VERSACE: Now Bob, what's the third name that we want members, new members in particular, to begin with?
BOB LANG: Well, a new name for members is actually an old name for the portfolio, which is Microsoft. And I think Microsoft has gotten beat up with a lot of big tech names over the past couple of months, certainly for the past six months. And then, actually, when you take a look at Microsoft's core product, which is the software, we've seen a lot of slowdown in this business as well too.
But they've really diversified themselves, Chris, in a way that insulates themselves that, if we do have a slowdown and continue to slowdown in PC markets, they have some other ways to take share and take advantage of it. And of course, we know that they're trying to buy Activision, which is a gamer like Take-Two and Electronic Arts.
We're not sure if that acquisition is going to go through, but if it does I think it's going to give Microsoft a leg up over the competition because they're actually-- you talk about buying the bullets and not the gun. So actually, they're going to have both because they have the Xbox, of course, and if they have the games of Activision, and of course they have their own games, that would be a huge strategic advantage for Microsoft if this one gets through.
So I think leading into 2023, Chris, 2024, especially if the dollar comes down a little bit more-- they really had some headwinds with the stronger currency-- I think Microsoft's going to be where it's at for subscribers.
CHRIS VERSACE: Right. And as you pointed out the weak PC market, I actually think that as we go through the current cycle, people are going to start valuing Microsoft differently because they realize that it is not as reliant on that PC market.
BOB LANG: That's right.
CHRIS VERSACE: And finally, if you missed yesterday's live show, please be sure to catch the replay available now in the Video tab on the AAP home page. Thanks for joining us for this special rundown.