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Two Dow stocks look like buys as the DJIA celebrates 125 years, strategists say

The Dow Jones Industrial Average hit a major milestone: The blue-chip index turned 125 years old.

Of course, the DJIA looks quite different now than when it was first published in The Wall Street Journal on May 26, 1896. None of the 12 original components remain, and its 30 members now include companies that were created decades later, like tech heavyweights Apple, Microsoft, Intel and Salesforce.

To mark the occasion, CNBC’s “Trading Nation” asked two market watchers for their favorites of the bunch.

Gina Sanchez, CEO of Chantico Global and chief market strategist at Lido Advisors, highlighted Microsoft as a favorite.

“This is a company that has just beat earnings, and this was a story that was already building before the pandemic. It got some extra rocket fuel during the pandemic as they built out their cloud-based offering which is the Azure suite,” Sanchez said Wednesday.

Microsoft beat estimates on the top and bottom lines in its third quarter ended March and reported in late April. Its Azure segment reported 50% revenue growth.

“Now, they’re experiencing the recovery as PC sales pick up [and] their core Windows sales are also picking up. It’s just hitting on every cylinder,” said Sanchez.

Microsoft has risen 7% this quarter, outpacing the 4% gain for the Dow. It last hit an all-time high at the end of April.

From an outperformer to a laggard, Miller Tabak chief market strategist Matt Maley says Boeing has ample opportunity ahead.

“The stock obviously got hit even before the pandemic because of this whole problem it had with the 737 Max. And the stock, unlike many, many stocks in the Dow and the overall market that have come back to pre-pandemic levels or even higher, we haven’t seen that at all with Boeing,” Maley said.

Boeing is still well below its March 2019 peak hit above $444 before the 737 Max crisis. The stock currently trades at $244.

“However, Boeing is … too big to fail. They’re way too important to the airline industry, which is going to continue to grow out of this pandemic and of course to the defense industry, and we still have issues with the Middle East, growing tensions in China. So they’re going to be a situation where the stock is well behind a lot of these Dow components, but its upside should be just as good or even greater,” said Maley.

He added that the technical setup looks strong for the stock after it made a string of higher highs and higher lows, establishing an upward-trending channel. It has also broken above a downward-sloping trend line established during that 2019 peak.

Disclosure: Lido and Sanchez hold MSFT.

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