Stocks to buy

With the risk-on trade back in 2023, many investors have switched from playing defense to offense. In other words, they aren’t just looking to protect their portfolios; they are on the hunt for stocks and cryptos that could make them rich.

While economic uncertainty remains, growth investors have done well buying the dips. Indeed, many have used the recent bear market to load up on stocks and cryptos that have underperformed — and they have been rewarded for it.

As long as the positive momentum in the broader market continues, the names below are among the stocks and cryptos that could make you rich.

Meta Platforms (META) 

Source: Aleem Zahid Khan / Shutterstock.com

Between the fall of 2021 and fall 2022, Meta Platforms’ (NASDAQ:META) shares lost more than three-quarters of their value. In addition to the broader tech wreck, investors seemed to disapprove of the social media juggernaut throwing billions of dollars down the black hole known as the company’s Reality Labs division.

But that was then. Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Mark Zuckerberg declared 2023 the “year of efficiency.” Cost-cutting efforts, including layoffs, have helped improve investor sentiment, with shares up 77% so far this year and more than 140% since bottoming out in November. And a renewed focus on the company’s core cash flow driver — its social media business — could mean more profits for investors on the horizon.

Meta’s current objectives are to optimize its operations, minimize expenses and prioritize artificial intelligence, the next major technological frontier, which could provide it with another sizeable income stream. “Our single largest investment is in advancing AI and building it into every one of our products,” Zuckerberg said in March. 

Zuckerberg sees the potential to leverage AI to enhance user engagement and advertising efficiency. This will help drive profitability across its Facebook and Instagram platforms, enabling it to remain competitive with other tech giants like Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) and Alphabet. To achieve this, the company has established a new team dedicated to generative AI that utilizes machine-learning algorithms to generate text, visual content and audio that mimic human production.

For investors who want to ride the AI train to big profits, META stock just may be your ticket.

Alibaba (BABA)

Source: Shutterstock

Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba (NYSE:BABA) is a stock that likely made some investors very rich. After going public at $68 per share in 2014, it hit a high above $300 in 2020. Over the ensuing two years, though, shares cratered more than 80%. However, since bottoming out in October, BABA has rallied 54%.

The sharp drop in shares between late 2020 and late 2022 has to do with the company’s slowing growth, as well as Chinese regulatory crackdowns on tech companies, the country’s strict Covid-19 policies and supply chain issues.

In late March, Alibaba announced a major reorganization, saying it will split the firm into six different entities (a de-merger, if you will). The six areas of focus are the cloud and artificial intelligence, online shopping platforms, food delivery service and mapping, logistics services, international e-commerce, and streaming and movies.

The goal is “to unlock shareholder value and foster market competitiveness,” Alibaba said. Analysts are also taking it as a sign that the Chinese government may be easing up on the tech sector.

While de-listing concerns and ongoing headwinds tied to China remain, there is plenty of growth potential for the company as China reopens. Long-term investors should consider buying shares at this dirt-cheap level.

Solana (SOL-USD)

Source: solvertv / Shutterstock.com

Solana (SOL-USD) is one of the cryptos I believe has excellent upside potential over the long term. This cryptocurrency network, which utilizes smart contracts and a proof-of-stake consensus mechanism, has seen impressive growth in recent years. 

Much of this is tied to the rise of Web3 applications and non-fungible tokens (NFTs.) Given Solana’s speed and cost advantage — thousands of transactions can be processed every second at a fraction of a cent each — lower-cost NFT sales can be done on this network much more easily than on competitors’ networks.

Earlier this month, Solana introduced the Saga phone, an Android device priced at $1,000 that’s optimized for Web3 and crypto enthusiasts, The phone is marketed as “Web3 in your pocket,” enabling faster, more secure cryptocurrency payments and NFT trading. 

“According to Solana, the device will allow users to trade tokens while waiting for coffee or mint NFTs during their morning commute,” my InvestorPlace colleague Julia Magas wrote recently.

In short, there are plenty of catalysts underpinning Solana’s future outperformance.

On the date of publication, Chris MacDonald has positions in META, BABA, SOL-USD. The opinions expressed in this article are those of the writer, subject to the InvestorPlace.com Publishing Guidelines.

Chris MacDonald’s love for investing led him to pursue an MBA in Finance and take on a number of management roles in corporate finance and venture capital over the past 15 years. His experience as a financial analyst in the past, coupled with his fervor for finding undervalued growth opportunities, contribute to his conservative, long-term investing perspective.

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