NVDA Stock May Pass AMZN in Market Cap. Next Up Could Be GOOGL.

Stock Market

There’s nothing artificial about Nvidia’s (NASDAQ:NVDA) parabolic stock market run. The chip giant, fueled by strong sales of AI-powered processors, has surged more than 40% already this year and is now worth a staggering $1.73 trillion. The stock is trading at a record high, having recently passed the $700 threshold. If Nvidia, which is due to report its latest earnings on Feb. 21, continues its impressive rally, the company will soon top two other tech giants in market value.

Nvidia is on the verge of passing both Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN), which is now worth $1.76 trillion, and Google owner Alphabet (NASDAQ:GOOG, NASDAQ:GOOGL), which has a market cap of $1.82 trillion. Saudi Aramco, which is valued at just under $2 trillion, is within Nvidia’s reach as well.

Nvidia Is Racing to Take Amazon’s Crown

After that, the stock would have a ways to go before it catches Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) and Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL), which are each worth around $3 trillion. Still, Nvidia’s potential ascension to becoming the third most valuable company on the planet would be an amazing milestone.

The question now for investors though is whether Nvidia shares may eventually run out of steam. After all, the stock has climbed more than 200% in just the past 12 months and has skyrocketed nearly 1,800% in the past five years. That type of appreciation is unsustainable. Even if you don’t subscribe to the notion that what goes up must eventually come down, it seems reasonable to expect the pace of Nvidia’s stock price appreciation to inevitably slow.

But when will that happen? Nvidia bulls still have much to cheer. The company is expected to report in a few weeks that its earnings per share more than quintupled in its fiscal fourth quarter. Analysts are forecasting a revenue surge of more than 200%. For the full fiscal 2024 year, sales are estimated to more than double. And Wall Street thinks revenue for fiscal 2025 will soar another 60% and that earnings will be up more than 70%.

Despite this, Nvidia shares still trade at a reasonable (if not exactly dirt cheap) valuation of 33 times earnings estimates for its next fiscal year. And it’s worth wondering if those fiscal 2025 earnings estimates are too low. The consensus earnings projection for next year has increased by nearly 25% over just the past three months. If Nvidia reports another blowout quarter on Feb. 21, analysts may have to frantically raise their forecasts again just to keep up.

The Bottom Line: NVDA Stock Forecast

Of course, there is no guarantee that Nvidia will eclipse the market caps of Amazon and Alphabet anytime soon. Both of those companies have momentum as well, with each of them benefiting from AI investments too. But Nvidia is the quintessential Wall Street darling right now. Nearly all (34 out of 38) of the analysts that cover the company have Nvidia rated a buy.

Sure, there is the substantial risk that Nvidia is an increasingly crowded trade and that even the slightest miss on earnings or indication that profit growth won’t live up to the considerable hype could send investors fleeing for the exits. Nvidia also must contend with increased competition in AI from rivals like Advanced Micro Devices (NASDAQ:AMD) and Intel (NASDAQ:INTC). But for the time being, Nvidia is the undisputed champion of the semiconductor industry.

As of this writing, Paul R. La Monica 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.

Paul R. La Monica is a veteran financial journalist with nearly 30 years experience (including more than 20 at CNN) covering the stock market and other asset classes, the economy and other corporate and business news.

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