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3 Analyst Favorite Blue-Chip Stocks to Buy Now In this article, we highlight 3 analyst favorite blue-chip stocks to buy now.

By Sean Sechler

This story originally appeared on MarketBeat

MarketBeat.com - MarketBeat

These 3 Analyst Favorites Belong On Your Watchlist

Analysts on Wall Street have an astounding amount of resources and plenty of experience making estimates based on corporate financial data, which is why their recommendations tend to have an impact on share prices. With that said, the ratings from these sell-side analysts can be hit or miss and should never be the sole reason why investors consider adding shares of stock. Using these price target estimates and ratings can be a good starting point towards making an informed decision about a stock, and finding the certain stocks that are favored among more analysts than others can be a smart approach to investing.
Blue-chip stocks, in particular, are always going to be analyst favorites given their track records of success and financial stability. These stocks are particularly attractive during a time in markets where dramatic moves are occurring, as they offer more safety and reliability than many other parts of the market. That's why we've put together the following list of 3 analyst favorite blue-chip stocks to buy now.
Keep reading below to learn more.

Visa (NYSE: V)

Adding shares of Visa, the world's largest retail electronic payment network and one of the strongest payments brands in the world could be a great move long-term, particularly when you stop to consider how much the digital payments industry could grow over the next decade. The company serves consumers, businesses, banks, and governments in over 200 countries and enables digital currency transactions with products like credit, debit, and prepaid cards. Analysts love this blue-chip name, as the stock has a consensus buy rating with a $269.09 price target according to MarketBeat, which implies over 25% of upside from current levels.
It's rare to find a market-leading company that still has plenty of room for growth, yet that's exactly what Visa has to offer. Additionally, investors should be excited about cross-border payment volumes getting back to normal after the pandemic as travel restrictions are eased. The company posted Q1 net revenue of $7.1 billion, up 24% year-over-year, which was driven by strong international transaction revenues. This could be a sign of big things to come for Visa, and the payments giant will report its Q2 earnings on April 26th.

Schlumberger Limited (NYSE:SLB)

The energy sector has absolutely been the place for investors to be in 2022, and with major supply chain issues expected to keep oil prices elevated thanks to the conflict in Ukraine, it's easy to recognize why analysts are bullish on companies like Schlumberger Limited. It's a leading oilfield services company that provides equipment and technology to the global oil & gas industry. With many countries in need of services and equipment used in drilling, producing, and maintaining oil and natural gas wells, Schlumberger could be in for a very prosperous next few years.
With a consensus buy rating and a $44.95 analyst price target consensus, Wall Street is definitely on board with what this company has to offer. Schlumberger also offers a decent dividend yield of 1.16% and could be bumping up that payout in the coming months as business gets back to normal following the impacts of the pandemic. The bottom line is that there aren't many companies out there that can help oil producers cut costs, which is why this blue-chip name should definitely be on your shopping list at this time.

McDonald's (NYSE: MCD)

Is there a more recognizable logo than the golden arches from McDonald's? As arguably one of the strongest brands in the world, this fast-food empire consists of over 40,000 restaurants in over 100 countries and is definitely the type of stock to look at in an uncertain market environment. This analyst favorite stock is worth a look for its market-leading position and for the type of consistency it can offer, as the company has raised its dividend payout for 46 consecutive years. Owning dividend aristocrats like this over the long-term tends to pay off in a big way, and with a 2.2% dividend yield, this stock is ideal for income investors.
McDonald's recently posted Q4 revenue growth of 12% year-over-year to $6.01 billion and saw its digital sales grow by 60% year-over-year in 2021. This is a sign that the company has navigated the pandemic well and has set itself up for long-term success with its digital and delivery ordering options. According to MarketBeat's analyst ratings, McDonald's shares are a buy with over 9% of upside from current levels, so keep an eye on how shares perform when the company reports its Q1 earnings on April 28th.

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