- These are the energy stocks to buy for investors looking for strong fundamentals and robust cash flows.
- Chevron Corporation (CVX): Annualized cash flow visibility of $40 billion to be used for dividends, share repurchases and capital investments.
- Occidental Petroleum (OXY): Deleveraging will improve credit metrics, and robust reserves ensure long-term cash flow visibility.
- Albemarle Corporation (ALB): Continues to benefit from increasing demand for lithium via growth in the EV sector.
If we look at stocks to buy for the long term, the energy sector is likely to remain an important focal point for investors. A report by International Energy Agency indicates that the world is facing its first "truly global energy crisis."
Geopolitical factors remain the key reason for this situation. The European Union embargo on Russia oil imports likely to intensify disruptions in energy markets in 2023. Furthermore, the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) has pursued production cuts amidst economic uncertainty.
Even as the world gradually shifts towards cleaner energy sources, fossil fuels will remain of key importance to all regions of the world. Thus, it's not surprising that Warren Buffett has aggressively invested in two quality oil and gas exploration companies in 2022.
Of course, higher fossil fuel prices also imply that investments will accelerate in the alternative sources of energy. Attractive investment ideas would therefore include renewable energy sources and themes like electric vehicles.
Let's discuss three stocks to buy to benefit from a looming energy crisis and these aforementioned secular catalysts.
Chevron Corporation (CVX)
While oil has corrected from highs of the year, Chevron Corporation (NYSE:CVX) stock has remained firm. This stock, which currently provides a dividend yield of 3.1%, is buoyed by a business model which has proven to be a cash flow machine.
To put things into perspective, Chevron reported operating cash flow of $13.7 billion for Q3 2022. If oil trades in the region of $80 to $90 per barrel, the company is positioned to report annual cash flows of $40 billion.
These cash flows will allow Chevron to increase dividends and pursue larger share repurchases. At the same time, Chevron is targeting massive capital investments of $15 to $17 billion annually over the next few years. These will ensure robust reserve replacement over time, providing for future growth.
It's also worth noting that Chevron is investing in reducing the company’s reliance on its carbon-heavy businesses. Chevron expects capital expenditures of $10 billion through 2028 in lower-carbon business segments. The focus will be on renewable natural gas, other renewable fuels, and renewable base oil & lubricants.
Occidental Petroleum (OXY)
Occidental Petroleum (NYSE:OXY) stock is another oil and gas exploration name that has remained resilient at higher levels. It also seems to be one of the favorite stocks for Warren Buffett. This isn’t a surprise, considering the company's cash flow potential in the long-term.
For Q3 2022, Occidental reported $3.6 billion in free cash flows. For the same period, the company reduced debt by $1.5 billion. Occidental plans to continue deleveraging, and as credit metrics improve, the stock is likely to trend higher.
It's also worth noting that as of December 2021, Occidental reported proved reserves of 3.5 billion barrels of oil equivalent. On a year-over-year basis, proven and probable reserves increased by 600 million barrels of oil equivalent. With robust financial flexibility, the company will continue to invest in exploration. This will translate into long term cash flow visibility for investors looking to play this space for years or decades.
Finally (and perhaps most importantly), Occidental also has very low breakeven costs. Thus, even with oil trading around the $80 range, strong cash flow and dividend growth is likely to be sustained.
Albemarle Corporation (ALB)
A common policy focus of governments globally is to increase the adoption of electric vehicles in the coming decades. This will require significant investment in lithium production, to meet the surging demand for EV batteries. Just to put things into perspective, it's estimated that by 2035, global lithium production is expected to come in at 1.1 million metric tons, or 24% lower than demand. Considering this key factor, Albemarle Corporation (NYSE:ALB) stock is attractive at current levels.
The company has already been a key beneficiary of this supply and demand imbalance. Accordingly, with the company increasing lithium production, coupled with higher realized price, margins are set to really take off. This is already showing through in Albermarle’s results, with revenue and adjusted EBITDA for Q3 2022 increasing 152% and 447% respectively on a year-over-year basis. Albemarle has also guided for full-year adjusted EBITDA growth in the range of 280% to 300%. With robust cash flows, ALB stock is among the top-quality dividend growth stocks to buy.
It's also worth noting that the company reported lithium conversion capacity of 88,000 metric tons per year in February 2022. Albemarle expects to increase conversion capacity to 200,000 metric tons per year by 2025. Therefore, the company is positioned for sustained growth. If lithium prices continue to remain in an uptrend, the company’s cash flow outlook will continue to be extremely enticing.
On the date of publication, Faisal Humayun did not hold (either directly or indirectly) any positions in the securities mentioned in this article. The opinions expressed in this article are those of the writer, subject to the InvestorPlace.com Publishing Guidelines.