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These are the top S&P 500 picks favored by Wall Street for the second half

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As we approach the second half of the year, Wall Street analysts are predicting that several stocks in the S&P 500 are poised to outperform the market. The S&P 500 has already seen a significant rally of over 15% in 2024, with investors flocking to AI-related stocks such as Nvidia. Major investment firms like Goldman Sachs, Evercore ISI, and Citi have raised their year-end forecasts for the S&P 500, with Goldman Sachs setting a target of 5,600. CNBC Pro has screened for stocks in the S&P 500 that are forecasted to have at least 20% upside to their analyst price targets for the rest of the year, and are already showing gains in 2024. Among the list is Warren Buffet’s Berkshire Hathaway, which is projected to rise 20.8% over the next 12 months and has already gained around 13% year-to-date. Analysts are bullish on Berkshire Hathaway, with three out of four analysts rating it as a buy or strong buy.

Disney is another stock favored by Wall Street going into the second half of the year, with analysts predicting a 25% rally in the next 12 months. Guggenheim noted that demand trends for Disney’s parks segment remain healthy, and around three-quarters of analysts covering the stock have a strong buy or buy rating. Disney shares are already up 12% in 2024, showing positive momentum. In addition to these consumer stocks, several energy stocks have also made the list of potential outperformers for the second half of the year. While the energy sector has underperformed the broader market so far in 2024, analysts believe that certain energy stocks have the potential for significant gains. Coterra Energy, for example, is forecasted to rally 26.5% despite only being up less than 5% year-to-date. UBS has named Coterra as one of its favorite energy and utilities picks, with two-thirds of analysts covering the stock giving it a strong buy or buy rating.

Oil giant Chevron is another energy stock expected to outperform in the second half of the year. Despite a modest year-to-date gain of only 2.8%, analysts are optimistic about Chevron’s growth potential. The stock is currently trading at a forward P/E ratio below its 5-year average, signaling potential for growth ahead. Chevron has also been making strategic moves, including a fight with Exxon Mobil over offshore oil assets in Guyana and the acquisition of Hess for $53 billion earlier in 2024. These developments have contributed to analysts’ positive outlook on Chevron’s future performance. Overall, as we head into the second half of the year, these stocks have caught the attention of Wall Street analysts and are expected to outperform the market based on their strong fundamentals and growth potential.

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