Bond yields have tumbled as global economic fears have heightened.
For those seeking safety in the tech trade, these three sector plays could provide shelter, says Ari Wald, Oppenheimer’s head of technical analysis.
“Key for us is seeing this drop in interest rates the world over and signaling the threat of a slowdown in the global economy. We expect a premium to continue to be placed on these higher growth, large cap quality companies, and this includes a lot of your popular large-cap tech names like Apple,” Wald said Monday in a CNBC “Trading Nation” segment.
After underperforming the market at the beginning of the year, Apple has broken out this month. The stock has soared 9 percent in March, far better than the S&P 500’s advance of less than 1 percent.
Apple shares were up 1.8 percent Tuesday, a day after coming under pressure as the iPhone maker announced new subscription services, including a credit card and a streaming service.
“They’re planting flags in markets that are fairly mature and so I think that’s going to be challenging for Apple,” Gina Sanchez, CEO of Chantico Global, said on the segment. “I do think that Apple has to make a pivot, but … I think this is going to be a brand challenge for Apple if ever there was one.”
Wald sees two other names that could hedge against any tech squeeze: Microsoft and Amazon.
“For Microsoft, here’s a stock coming off a new cycle high in this mixed and questionable market tape. It held up better through the Q4 volatility, led on the way back higher as well, we see this as a sign of relative strength. It scores well in our momentum work,” said Wald.
He said Microsoft should find support at $114 after breaking out above that level in mid-March. It has rallied 3 percent since then.
“For Amazon, here’s a stock that’s probably the most tactical it’s been in years, and we say this looking at the stock’s weekly MACD [moving average convergence divergence indicator] inflecting positively from its most oversold condition since 2014 with a long-term uptrend that’s still intact as well,” said Wald.
The indicator has been trending upward since earlier this month, pointing to a change in trend.
“Broad-based strength, relative strength, you still want to own these high-growth companies,” said Wald.
Apple has added nearly 20 percent this year, Microsoft is up 16 percent, and Amazon has gained 18 percent.