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These 2 Aerospace Stocks Are Flying Under the Radar

These two aerospace stocks are flying under Wall Street’s radar but are checking off my “3 Rs” growth stock criteria just the same.


The lion’s share of my focus is typically on the usual growth sectors: Technology infrastructure, consumer-facing tech, medical and retail (especially cookie-cutter stories with great store economics).

Those areas also happen to be where we find the majority of our winners.

But there’s another area that’s not normally included in the “growth” group that has a solid history of launching winners.

I’m talking about aerospace stocks, which might not seem growth-y, but they fill the main criteria I use when hunting for leaders and right now, they’re flying pretty much under Wall Street’s radar.

The criteria, which I sometimes call the “3 Rs,” are having a long Runway of both Rapid and Reliable growth. In terms of the first two Rs (long runway and rapid growth), following a freeze with the pandemic, it turns out demand for new aircraft and all that goes into them—mostly commercial, with newer, more efficient jets, but this also includes defense-related orders—is going wild, and short of another virus or major recession, it should continue years into the future.

As for the 3rd R—reliability—one reason aerospace names have appeal is that … there simply aren’t that many of them, which means there’s usually not a ton of competition. Combining it all, the industry outlook for increased engine and jet sales has many firms in the sector releasing bullish longer-term forecasts for sales, earnings and cash flow; again, barring a huge disruption, the writing is on the wall for strong newbuild and aftermarket demand for a long time to come.

We’ve seen a handful of aerospace names show up in Cabot Top Ten Trader recently, and here’s what we wrote about a couple of them.

The first is ATI (ATI), which produces high-performance titanium- and nickel-based alloys, stainless steel and specialty components for a variety of sectors including oil and gas and specialty energy. But aerospace is more than 60% of revenue, and all the metrics (backlog at a record high, engine shipments up 15% in Q1, margins rising) look good. Best of all, the top brass sees EBITDA (a measure of cash flow) just beginning to ramp—for this year and next, that figure should rise 33% in total, while for 2024-2027, the goal is for a 57% EBITDA gain. ATI broke out in February and tightened up in March and early April before gapping up on earnings in May. It’s since closed that earnings gap and dipped below its 50-day line, but it’s worth watching here.


Another idea in the aerospace sector is Woodward (WWD). Its product line isn’t exciting—it sells a variety of energy conversion and control solutions like fuel pumps, engine and flight deck controls, air valves, fuel nozzles, injectors, actuators, integrated propulsion systems—but commercial aerospace is the driver, including big growth in aftermarket services (revenues there up 30% last year and 18% in Q1). Again, like ATI and many peers, the top brass is looking ahead to even brighter times: At last December’s Investor Day, management forecast 8% annual sales growth, 16% EBITDA growth and cumulative free cash flow of $20 or more during the next three years.

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There are others, but the bigger point is that, while some traditional growth areas like chips and some AI stocks are cooling off, aerospace-centric names are doing well—and given the multi-year runway of steady, reliable growth ahead, big investors should remain interested. The stock is a bit extended here, but a near-term shakeout would be tempting.

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A growth stock and market timing expert, Michael Cintolo is Chief Investment Strategist of Cabot Wealth Network and Chief Analyst of Cabot Growth Investor and Cabot Top Ten Trader. Since joining Cabot in 1999, Mike has uncovered exceptional growth stocks and helped to create new tools and rules for buying and selling stocks. Perhaps most notable was his development of the proprietary trend-following market timing system, Cabot Tides, which has helped Cabot place among the top handful of market-timing newsletters numerous times.