Personal computers (PC) are expected to continue their good run in 2021 following robust sales last year owing mainly to the COVID-19 pandemic that compelled the world to work and learn remotely. Notably, per a report by Canalys, the global PC market is estimated to increase 8% in 2021 with total shipments being expected to rise to 496.8 million units, as quoted in a Business Wire article.
The article mentioned that the PC market will be aided by factors such as backlog of device orders from 2020 that are being boosted by workers and students, who are still affected by the pandemic-led restrictions. Moreover, the article stated that demand for Chromebooks and tablets should be robust this year and witness a rise of 30% and 8%, respectively, with the education segment continuing to be the key driver of growth. Canalys also expects the broader commercial segment to increase the deployments of Chromebooks and tablets.
Notably, PCs already saw strong shipments in 2020, increasing 13.1% annually, per a report by the International Data Corporation (“IDC”). In fact, IDC mentioned in the report that the last time the PC market saw such robust growth was in 2010 when the market witnessed year-over-year growth of 13.7%. Moreover, in the fourth quarter of 2020, global shipments of PCs rose 26.1% on a year-over-year basis.
The report further stated that gaming PCs and monitor sales saw all-time highs last year. This is because practicing of social distancing meant that people had to resort to various forms of entertainment at home in order to curb the risk of exposure to the virus.
In fact, reflective of the all-time high sales of gaming PCs, the United States saw robust growth in sales of gaming hardware last year. Per a report by the NPD Group, gaming hardware saw double-digit percentage gain of 35% in 2020. Overall, the spending on video game products was also strong last year as consumers stayed engaged in gaming. Total spending on video game products in the United States reached $57 billion in 2020, witnessing a rise of 27% from 2019.
5 Stocks to Keep an Eye On
The global PC market seems poised to continue its good run in 2021 as demand is expected to remain strong. This makes it a good time to look at names that can benefit from this continued upswing. Notably, we have selected five such stocks that carry a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy) or 3 (Hold). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.
Apple Inc. AAPL designs, manufactures, and markets smartphones, personal computers, tablets, wearables and accessories worldwide. The company currently has a Zacks Rank #2. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for its current-year earnings increased 10.9% over the past 60 days. The company’s expected earnings growth rate for the current year is 36.3%.
Microsoft Corporation MSFT develops, licenses and supports software, services, devices, and solutions worldwide. Its More Personal Computing segment provides Windows original equipment manufacturer licensing and other non-volume licensing of the Windows operating system. It also offers Surface, PC accessories, PCs, tablets and so on. It currently has a Zacks Rank #2. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for its current-year earnings increased 9.1% over the past 60 days. The company’s expected earnings growth rate for the current year is 27.4%.
NVIDIA Corporation NVDA operates as a visual computing company worldwide. The company’s GPU segment offers processors, which include GeForce for PC gaming and mainstream PCs. It currently has a Zacks Rank #2. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for its current-year earnings increased 15.1% over the past 60 days. The company’s expected earnings growth rate for the current year is 32.7%.
Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. AMD operates as a semiconductor company worldwide. The company provides x86 microprocessors for desktop PCs under the AMD Ryzen, AMD Ryzen PRO, Ryzen, and other processors brands. It currently has a Zacks Rank #3. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for its current-year earnings increased 7.2% over the past 60 days. The company’s expected earnings growth rate for the current year is 49.6%.
Alphabet Inc. GOOGL provides online advertising services. Notably, Alphabet’s Google offers its Chrome operating system, which helps in running the Chromebook laptops. Alphabet currently has a Zacks Rank #3. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for its current-year earnings increased 10.7% over the past 60 days. The company’s expected earnings growth rate for the current year is 17.8%.
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