Stock Market

Alphabet (NASDAQ:GOOG,NASDAQ:GOOGL) stock is well-positioned to be resilient in the face of slowing economic growth and the valuation of GOOG stock has become quite favorable. As a result, Alphabet’s shares are definitely a buy for many investors.

And for those with a long-term time horizon, Alphabet continues to provide a means of exploiting the tremendous profits that autonomous vehicles will generate.

Ticker Company Price
GOOG Alphabet Inc. $2,247.74

Resilient to Many Challenges

Alphabet’s near-monopoly status in the online search engine space leaves it much less vulnerable to the current economic slowdown than its large-tech peers.

As a result of this status, Alphabet should not be badly hurt by a number of trends — including the reduction of demand for goods, intensifying competition, China’s struggles, and lower ad budgets — that have negatively impacted a number of other tech giants.

For example, Meta Platforms (NASDAQ:META) and Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX) have been slammed by competition, but Alphabet’s revenue from online search ads will not be materially impacted by competition due to its overwhelming market share in the space. Meanwhile, consumers’ well-documented switch to experiences from products is probably having significant, negative impacts on Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) and Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT). But since Alphabet generates revenue from ads for experiences as well as for goods, it should be much less affected by the goods-to-experiences switch than other tech giants.

Similarly, since Alphabet generates very little revenue from China, it should not be, unlike Apple and Microsoft, materially affected by China’s economic issues.

And finally, many companies use Snap’s (NYSE:SNAP) Snapchat as a means of establishing brand identity among young people. When companies’ business slows, brand identity advertising is one of the first items that they cut. Conversely, of course, ads on Google are targeted toward consumers who are looking to buy goods or services immediately.

Waymo Is Still Likely to Move the Needle Eventually

For a couple of years, I have been optimistic about the ability of Waymo, Alphabet’s autonomous-driving unit, to drive GOOG stock higher. Waymo’s progression has been slower than I thought, but the division has had some achievements. Specifically, it has expanded its robotaxi service to downtown Phoenix and the city’s airport. It is expected to start a similar service in San Francisco soon and is partnering with UPS (NYSE:UPS) and Walmart (NYSE:WMT) to deliver products. Waymo is also partnering with Uber (NYSE:UBER) on autonomous trucks.

According to CNBC, autonomous vehicles are “poised to reach 12% of new car registrations globally by 2030.” It’s a good bet that Waymo will continue to play a major role in the sector as it expands in the coming years.

Alphabet is well-positioned to prosper despite the current macroeconomic headwinds and the future of its Waymo unit is very bright. On the valuation front, the shares are changing hands for a forward price-to-earnings ratio of just 19. Consequently, GOOG stock is a buy for both medium-term and long-term investors.

On the date of publication, Larry Ramer did not have (either directly or indirectly) any positions in the securities mentioned in this article. 

Larry Ramer has conducted research and written articles on U.S. stocks for 15 years. He has been employed by The Fly and Israel’s largest business newspaper, Globes. Larry began writing columns for InvestorPlace in 2015. Among his highly successful, contrarian picks have been GE, solar stocks, and Snap. You can reach him on StockTwits at @larryramer.

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