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3 top ASX stocks: Woolworths Limited, AMP Limited and Crown Resorts Ltd

The last year has been rather mixed for Woolworths Limited (ASX: WOW), AMP Limited (ASX: AMP) and Crown Resorts Ltd (ASX: CWN). In fact, only AMP has delivered gains, with Woolworths and Crown Resorts being in the red over the last twelve months by 7% and 20% respectively (versus a gain of 31% for AMP).

However, looking ahead, all three companies could be worth buying at the present time and look set to deliver stunning share price growth in 2015.


Clearly, a fall in share price for Woolworths and Crown Resorts means that their respective valuations are less demanding than they were a few months ago. For example, Woolworths now trades on a price to sales (P/S) ratio of just 0.65, which compares very favourably to the wider food and staples retailing sector’s P/S ratio of 0.98. As such, Woolworths could be all set for an upward adjustment to its rating moving forward.

Meanwhile, Crown Resorts has a price to earnings (P/E) ratio of 15.9, which compares well to the wider consumer services sector’s P/E ratio of 18. And, not to be outdone, AMP’s P/E ratio of 16.4 may seem rather rich while the ASX has a P/E ratio of 15.2, but it seems more appealing when considered alongside the insurance sector’s rating of 17.6. As a result, both stocks could see their share prices rise moving forward due to increases in their ratings versus their respective sectors.

Looking Ahead

All three stocks have relatively bright long-term prospects with, for example, Crown Resorts being forecast to increase its bottom line at an annualised rate of 8.4% over the next two years. Certainly, it has the potential to deliver even better growth over the medium to long term, since it is focused on developing new offerings in Asia and other parts of the globe, but in the near term a weak Aussie dollar could provide a major boost to its bottom line.

Meanwhile, AMP’s profitability is forecast to rise by 11.5% in the current year, with the insurer’s funds under management figures having the potential to surprise on the upside, too. And, with Woolworths also set to benefit from a lower fuel price and an interest rate policy that is likely to be dovish throughout the course of the year, it could also grow its bottom line at a faster rate than the 3% that is currently being priced in by the market.

So, while their performance over the last year has been somewhat mixed, Woolworths, AMP and Crown Resorts could be worth buying at the present time.

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Motley Fool contributor Peter Stephens does not own shares in any of the companies mentioned.

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