Are These The Best Defensive Stocks To Buy Today?

Defensive stocks are becoming an increasingly prominent area of focus in the stock market today. For the most part, this comes as more analysts continue to mention the possibility of a U.S. economic recession. Should this be the case, it would make sense that investors are turning towards more recession-proof stocks such as these. After all, some of the top defensive stocks today consist of long-standing companies in critical industries. Furthermore, they often boast strong dividend-paying histories as well.

Overall, this ranges from key logistics names such as FedEx (NYSE: FDX) to consumer product giants like Procter & Gamble (NYSE: PG). On one hand, FedEx continues to serve the masses via its global delivery network. It currently offers a quarterly dividend of $0.75 a share, an annual yield of 1.48%. On the other hand, Procter & Gamble beat Wall Street estimates in its latest earnings report last week. The firm is raising its forecast for the year and has a quarterly dividend of $0.91 per share, a 2.25% annual yield. All in all, there seems to be plenty of excitement around defensive stocks in the stock market now. On that note, here are four more to check out today.

Defensive Stocks To Buy [Or Sell] Right Now

United Parcel Services Inc.

For starters, we will be taking a look at United Parcel Services, or UPS, for short. In brief, it is a multinational shipping & receiving and supply chain solutions provider. For a sense of scale, the company’s total revenue in 2021 was $97.3 billion. The likes of which are thanks to its comprehensive array of logistics services. Because of UPS’s global reach, investors could be keeping an eye on UPS stock this earnings season. Accordingly, the company does not seem to be slowing down on the operational front as well.

Evidently, UPS posted solid results in its latest quarterly earnings update. As it stands, the company is looking at an earnings per share of $3.05, substantially beating consensus analyst forecasts of $2.88. Additionally, UPS also raked in total revenue of $24.4 billion, above Wall Street expectations of $23.78 billion. In the larger scheme of things, the company continues to leverage soaring e-commerce demand and high-profit markets as part of its strategy. Would all this make UPS stock a buy for you?

UPS stock chart
Source: TD Ameritrade TOS

[Read More] Stock Market Today: Dow Jones, S&P 500 Fall As China Covid Woes Persist; UPS In Focus On Earnings Beat

PepsiCo Inc.

PepsiCo is a multinational food, snack, and beverage corporation. In essence, its business encompasses a broad selection of the food and beverage markets and the company says that its products are enjoyed by consumers more than a billion times a day across the globe. Accordingly, it is behind the brands like Lays, Doritos, Pepsi-Cola, Mountain Dew, and Quaker among others. Today, the company reported its first-quarter financials for 2022, and also provided an update on its full-year outlook.

Diving in, net revenue grew by 9.3% year-over-year to $16.2 billion. Pepsi also reported an earnings per share of $3.06, more than doubling from a year earlier. “For the first quarter, we delivered strong results which reflect our presence in growing, global categories and the investments we have made towards becoming an even Faster, even Stronger, and even Better company with PepsiCo Positive (pep+) at the center of everything we do. Given the strength and resilience of our businesses to date, while reflecting higher than expected input cost inflation for the balance of 2022, we now expect our full-year organic revenue to increase 8 percent (previously 6 percent) and we continue to expect core constant currency earnings per share to increase 8 percent,” said CEO Ramon Laguarta. With that in mind, is PEP stock a buy?

PEP stock chart
Source: TD Ameritrade TOS

AT&T Inc.

Following that, we have AT&T, one of the largest telecommunications companies in the U.S. It serves over 100 million families and friends and helps them connect in meaningful ways. It has continuously driven innovation in two of its key businesses, 5G and fiber. The company is also well-positioned for the dawn of a new age of connectivity that will be powered by the widespread and growing availability of 5G and fiber. It also serves nearly all of the Fortune 1000 companies and boasted a 2021 revenue of over $100 billion.

Last week, it also reported its first-quarter financials for 2022. Firstly, the company posted consolidated revenue of $38.1 billion. This was driven by mobility revenues, at $20.1 billion, an increase of 5.5% year-over-year. Secondly, it also reported a diluted earnings per share of $0.65. AT&T says that its growing customer base is reaching historical levels. It has had its best quarter for postpaid phone net adds in more than a decade. Furthermore, the company says that its fiber broadband net additions also remain consistently strong. For these reasons, is T stock worth investing in?

T stock chart
Source: TD Ameritrade TOS

[Read More] 3 Top Consumer Staples Stocks To Watch In The Stock Market Today

Pfizer Inc.

Topping our list today, we have Pfizer, a pharmaceutical company that has been at the forefront of the health care space. The company continues to advance treatments and cures for some of the most feared diseases of the times. This would include Covid-19, where the company has delivered billions of its life-saving vaccines to people all over the globe. Today, the company announced an exciting piece of news with Valneva SE (NASDAQ: VALN).

The companies reported positive Phase 2 pediatric data for their Lyme disease vaccine candidate, VLA15. The vaccine candidate has shown strong immunogenicity in study participants aged 5-17 years one month after the primary vaccination series. Based on these new results, Valneva and Pfizer plan to proceed with the inclusion of pediatric participants in their planned Phase 3 trial. The trial will evaluate VLA15 in adults and pediatric subjects 5 years of age and above and is expected to be initiated in the third quarter of 2022, subject to regulatory approval. With this piece of information, is PFE stock a top defensive stock to add to your portfolio?

PFE stock chart
Source: TD Ameritrade TOS

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