How the market’s forgotten stocks could lead a ‘once-in-a-generation’ buying opportunity

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A once-in-a-generation opportunity is coming for the stock market, according to investment chief Richard Bernstein.

That’s because profits are about to accelerate for companies throughout the stock market.

It could usher in a decade of sagging returns for current market leaders, and huge gains for the rest of the market.

Brace for a big investing opportunity that’s about to come for stocks — and not in an area of the market investors may be expecting.

That’s according to Richard Bernstein, the CIO of Richard Bernstein Advisors, a $16 billion asset manager.

He argues that while the Magnificent Seven mega-cap firms have dominated the S&P 500’s gains in 2023, less high-profile stocks are now primed to see big returns over the next decade.

That coming pendulum swing in market leadership is a “once-in-a-generation” buying opportunity brewing among forgotten and under-loved areas of the market, Bernstein says. Speaking with Insider, Bernstein said he sees it similar to a period like the 2000s, when the biggest leaders in the S&P 500 shed value while underdog sectors like energy and emerging markets saw “monster returns.”

“Despite profits growth becoming more abundant, investors generally continue to focus on the so-called Magnificent 7 stocks. Such narrow leadership seems totally unjustified and their extreme valuations suggest a once-in-a-generation investment opportunity in virtually anything other than those 7 stocks,” he wrote in a note this week.

So what makes this time different from other periods of changing market leadership?

Bernstein — who was previously the chief investment strategist at Merrill Lynch — says his expectation for a stock boom isn’t to be mistaken with something like the two years of the pandemic market rally, which featured narrow leadership by so-called reopening names, similar to what’s now happening with the Magnificent 7. His thesis hinges on a broader swath of the market getting a lift by a resilient economy and surging corporate profitability.

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