Since you usually get what you pay for, the concept of the best stocks under $15 to buy now brings up a dilemma. Are these market ideas really worth investors’ time considering the risks they may pose? Though most folks should arguably focus their energy on established players, occasionally you do find some hidden gems.
Utilizing Gurufocus’s screener, I’m bringing to you what I genuinely believe are some of the top names among the best stocks under $15 to buy. Featuring (relatively) low risk and high fiscal stability, these market plays may be cheap now. However, once the market figures out what’s going on, they might rocket higher.
So, if you’re ready to dip into a higher-pressure zone (but smartly), take a look at these best stocks under $15 to buy.
Best Stocks Under $15: United Microelectronics (UMC)
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One of the powerhouses in the semiconductor space, United Microelectronics (NYSE:UMC) represents Taiwan’s first semiconductor company, founded in 1980. Currently, United commands a market capitalization of $15.4 billion. At the time of writing, shares trade hands for $6.37. On a year-to-date basis, UMC hemorrhaged over 45% of equity value, presenting understandable concerns.
Still, here’s something to keep in mind. Per Benzinga, United grew revenue by 27.1% on a year-over-year basis in October. As well, it beat the consensus target for earnings per share of 30 cents for the fiscal third quarter, delivering instead 34.5 cents. However, it’s the bigger picture that makes UMC appealing as one of the best stocks under $15 to buy.
Primarily, UMC trades for 7.7-times forward earnings, representing a significant discount relative to the industry’s median level of 14.9 times. Moreover, United features excellent profitability margins, with a net margin of 28% beating out nearly 91% of the competition.
Based in the U.K., Abcam (NASDAQ:ABCM) represents a producer, distributor and seller of protein research tools, per its public profile. At the moment, Abcam carries a market cap of $3.32 billion. Also, it trades hands for, at the time of writing, $14.90, just barely making it one of the best stocks under $15 to buy. Since the start of the year, ABCM lost almost 38% of its equity value, drawing concerns among market observers.
Nevertheless, Abcam is well worth keeping on your radar if you’re a contrarian investor. For one thing, the company’s antibody business will likely be relevant for years to come. Further, the financials present an attractive picture. For instance, Abcam’s three-year revenue growth rate stands at 13.9%, beating 61.5% of its peers.
On the bottom line, the company enjoys solid profitability margins as well. For example, its net margin is 3.13%, ranked higher than 74% of the biotechnology space. Also, it’s worth pointing out that its return on equity (ROE) is 0.85%. Though a small figure nominally, it beats out nearly 81% of the industry.
Best Stocks Under $15: Neogen (NEOG)
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Based in Michigan, Neogen (NASDAQ:NEOG) is an international food safety company that provides test kits and relevant products to detect dangerous substances in food. Currently, Neogen commands a market cap of just over $3 billion. As I write this, NEOG closed the Nov. 7 session at $14.02. Since the beginning of this year, NEOG dropped an alarming 68.4% of its equity value.
Naturally, such a loss draws serious concerns among Wall Street participants. However, it’s also fair to point out recent momentum. On Monday, NEOG popped up 2.4%. In the trailing five days, the stock gained nearly 4%. Over the trailing month, shares moved up almost 16%. But does near-term enthusiasm make NEOG one of the best stocks under $15 to buy?
Possibly and that’s largely related to the wider financials. According to data from Gurufocus, Neogen carries zero debt on its books. That gives the company incredible flexibility as we venture into ambiguous waters. Also, based on the Shiller price-earnings ratio, NEOG represents an undervalued investment.
Tencent Music Entertainment (TME)
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Based in China and founded in 2016, Tencent Music Entertainment (NYSE:TME) is a company that develops music streaming services for the Chinese market. Presently, Tencent Music carries a market cap of $6.73 billion. Since the January opener, TME dropped 42% of its equity value. However, shares may have stabilized recently, losing “only” 1.7% in the trailing month.
Naturally, Tencent attracts concerns regarding its viability due to the vagaries associated with China’s economy. For instance, rumors that Beijing will relax its zero-Covid policy turned out to be for naught. Instead, CNN reports that no immediate sign of zero-Covid-policies ending. Still, that could be a positive for Tencent Music based on the cynical captive audience thesis.
On a far-less cynical note, the company enjoys attractive financials. Primarily, it enjoys stability in the balance sheet. For instance, its equity-to-asset ratio is 0.71 times, ranked better than 61% of the competition. Also, it trades at just under 10-times forward earnings, favorably below the industry median of 16 times. Therefore, TME is an enticing name among the best stocks under $15 to buy.
Best Stocks Under $15: Vipshop (VIPS)
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Another China-based enterprise, Vipshop (NYSE:VIPS) operates the e-commerce website VIP.com, which specializes in online discount sales. At the moment, Vipshop commands a market cap of $5.26 billion. Also, it trades hands at $8.27 per share. Since the start of this year, VIPS only gave up 1.2% of equity value, which should raise eyebrows.
True, China concerns will weigh on the securities based in the country. For instance, Beijing’s consolidation of power under President Xi Jinping’s unheard-of third term raises serious concerns about free market reform. Still, VIPS tends to fall under the radar compared to China’s biggest tech flagships. As well, e-commerce could perform well under the zero-Covid policy.
Financially, VIPS features a strong cash balance. Right now, the underlying enterprise’s cash-to-debt ratio stands at 7.9 times, ranked better than 86% of the competition. Also, its Altman Z-Score is 3.73, indicating lower-than-average bankruptcy risk over the next two years. Therefore, VIPS is well worth consideration for the best stocks under $15 to buy.
Sandstorm Gold (SAND)
Based in Vancouver, British Columbia, Sandstorm Gold (NYSE:SAND) represents a gold royalty enterprise. Per the company’s website, a “gold royalty is a contract that gives the owner (a gold royalty company) the right to a percentage of gold production or revenue in exchange for an upfront payment.”
Currently, Sandstorm features a market cap of just under 2 billion CAD (translating to $1.47 billion). At the time of writing, SAND trades hands at $5.05. Since the start of this year, shares declined by 16.4%. However, in the trailing month, SAND gained over 5%.
The positive swing may be surprising given that the Federal Reserve remains committed to attacking inflation through higher interest rates. Nevertheless, gold could be responding to the fear trade. With much uncertainty awaiting the global markets, some investors may turn to the intrinsic value of gold.
Also, keep in mind that Sandstorm brings tremendous profitability to the table. For example, its net margin stands at nearly 49%, beating out almost 94% of the competition. Thus, it’s one of the best stocks under $15 to buy for contrarian investors.
Best Stocks Under $15: FutureFuel (FF)
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Headquartered in Clayton, Missouri, FutureFuel (NYSE:FF) is a developer and producer of chemicals and biofuels. Currently, the company carries a market cap of a hair over $305 million. At the moment, shares trade hands for $6.97 a pop. Since the beginning of the year, FF declined by 10.4%. While not great by any measure, it’s also important to point out that the benchmark S&P 500 dropped 20.6% during the same period.
Primarily, I believe FutureFuel will attract contrarians because of its massive cash balance. As I write this, the company’s cash-to-debt ratio stands at nearly 343 times, better than almost 91% of its peers. In addition, FutureFuel’s Altman Z-Score pings at 4.26, reflecting low bankruptcy risk. Thus, from a stability standpoint, it’s worth considering for best stocks under $15 to buy.
Finally, it’s also a discounted market idea. It features a Shiller PE ratio of 5.3 times. In contrast, the industry median is 20 times.
On the date of publication, Josh Enomoto did not have (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.
A former senior business analyst for Sony Electronics, Josh Enomoto has helped broker major contracts with Fortune Global 500 companies. Over the past several years, he has delivered unique, critical insights for the investment markets, as well as various other industries including legal, construction management, and healthcare.