The Best-Performing S&P 500 Stocks So Far in 2022? Think Oil and M&A

The Best-Performing S&P 500 Stocks So Far in 2022? Think Oil and M&A

While the S&P 500 has taken a beating this year, certain equities have continued to prosper. Among the five best performers are a corporation on the verge of being bought and three oil-related names.

The S&P 500 is down 7.4% year to date, approaching correction territory, which officially refers to a down of 10% or more from an all-time high. As a result, it has proven difficult to identify successful stocks: According to FactSet, only approximately one-quarter of the S&P 500's components are up for the year.

The fall is being fueled by the Federal Reserve's tightening monetary policies in response to excessive inflation. Markets anticipate additional interest rate hikes. Not only might they stifle economic price rising, but they are also increasing long-term bond rates, making future gains less desirable in today's terms.

Halliburton (HAL), Schlumberger (SLB), Hess (HES), Activision Blizzard (ATVI), and Las Vegas Sands (LVS) are the names that have shone through regardless.

The stocks of Halliburton and Schlumberger NV (SLB) are up 25% and 22% year to date, respectively. Oil-services companies often benefit from increased demand when the price of oil increases, and the price of West Texas Intermediate crude is up about 11% year to date.

Hess, a producer of crude oil, has seen its shares gain 20% year to date.

Activision Blizzard's stock is up 20% year to date. Shareholders got fascinating news when Microsoft (MSFT) agreed to acquire the gaming maker for over $68 billion, or $95 per share. That was a 45 percent premium to the day's closing price prior to the deal's announcement. The stock price, which was at $79 as of Monday's closing, reflected the risk that Washington authorities may block the merger of companies. Prior to the announcement of the deal, shares were down 1.7 percent year to date.xx v

Las Vegas Sands' stock has increased 19 percent year to far, benefiting from favorable reforms to China's gaming rules. On Jan. 14, the Macau government halved the number of casino concessions it grants. This benefited Las Vegas Sands' shares, as the company derives around 46% of its revenue from Macau, according to FactSet.

Thus far, the biggest winners have been oil-price beneficiaries and equities that have had totally company-specific occurrences.