After the next several trading days, we should know whether or not we just experienced the stock market correction everybody has been anticipating. I'll leave it to others to run down the numbers and consider the possibilty of a meaningful correction. We've been through this -- and worse -- before. During times like these, you should defend yourself against the risk of big losses and prepare to enter stocks that are dropping for no good reason.
Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL). Today, America's Company starts selling the iPad 2. On Thursday, however, the stock took a beating, falling 1.65 percent to close at $346.67. AAPL started the week at $361.40. Clearly, this is the buying opportunity of a lifetime. Ignore critical rebukes of the new iPad. Everybody wants to take down the man at the top. The reality is that Apple is more than a technology company. And the iPad is more than a high-quality utilitarian and time-wasting wonder. Like the iPod, iPhone, and, increasingly, a MAC, it's a status symbol. Apple products carry the same cache as luxury brands like Gucci and Audi. Lost in the iPad shuffle -- Apple will continue to dominate desktop and laptop sales growth this year, a CDMA iPhone is coming to China Telecom, and Apple TV just underwent a significant, but overlooked upgrade. According to Yahoo! Finance, the consensus AAPL price target stands at $419.98, as of March 10th.
Advanced Micro Devices (NYSE:AMD). Whenever AMD gains some ground, something goes wrong. As the stock was getting set to make its home above $9, the board abruptly ousted CEO Dirk Meyer. Shared tanked from as high as $9.25 on January 10th to as low as $7.34 later in the month. In February, AMD got another boost above $9 on news that Apple's new Macbook Pro will feature AMD graphics processors. Takeover speculation kept the shares in the $9 range until the recent market downturn. AMD closed at $8.42, down 2.88 percent, on Thursday. Takeover or not, something's up at AMD. When the dust settles, the stock could reach one analyst's optimistic price target of $12.50.
Ford (NYSE:F). One day you're Wall Street's darling turnaround play, the next your stock gets treated like a brand new used car. Ford has done nothing but produce solid sales as of late, including the most recent report for February. The company also intends to increase production, yet shares of the automaker have retreated 25 percent after appreciating 1,391 percent from their 2008 low. Yahoo! Finance lists a $19.58 average price target for F.
Amazon.com (NASDAQ:AMZN). Talk about a freefall. Amazon.com shares flirted shamelessly with $190 back in mid-February. AMZN closed at $166.14 on Thursday, a descent of more than 12 percent. The street expressed caution after Amazon.com's last earnings report. The company noted that capital expenditures would rise. The notion of reinvesting in the business should not scare potential AMZN shareholders away. Amazon also reported strong Kindle sales and continuing growth of loyalty features such as Subscribe & Save and Amazon Prime. And for the first time ever, sales of media items like books and DVDs accounted for less than half of the company's revenues, meaning that other areas, such as consumer staples, are growing. If you have a long-term time horizon, any further pull-back in shares presents a buying opportunity not far from the one that exists in Apple shares. Amazon exists as the first choice for consumers looking for more than just cheap books.
Nvidia (NASDAQ:NVDA). Shares of Nvidia got trashed after the company didn't update its financial lookout at its analyst day on Wednesday. Shares of NVDA closed off by 6.37 percent on Thursday. For the week, investors have seen NVDA dive from an intraday high of $20.98 on Monday to yesterday's closing price of $17.92, two cents above the low of the day. The story, however, has not changed regarding Nvidia. Several analysts came out after Wenesday's event, noting that the company's business plan remains impressive, intact, and on track. Yesterday, Raymond James' chip analyst Hans Mosesmann went on record, noting that Nvidia will not be hurt by tablet issues, as he expects smartphones to drive its growth. Yahoo! Finance lists an average price target of $23.86 for NVDA shares.
If you have time on your side and can stomach a little bit of volatility, shares of these five stocks on the recent and any future dips could prove beneficial to your portfolio. Had you invested $50,000 in these companies ($10,000 in each) one year ago, you would have $58,743, as of yesterday's close. And that includes each stock's considerable slide over the last week. Your only loser would have been AMD. The biggest winner: Apple.