There’s a big problem with Goldman’s stock picks: Portfolio manager

There's a big problem with Goldman's favorite stocks, according to portfolio manager Kim Forrest.

On Friday, Goldman Sachs released a list of stocks that it believes have the most potential to beat the market, based on the comparison between the Goldman analyst's target and the current stock price, as well as the potential for those stocks to move independently of the market.

Topmost on the list are First Solar and HanesBrands, which Goldman apparently expects to rise 55 percent and 52 percent, respectively. Following those are Regeneron, Tyson Foods, Harman and Juniper Networks.

But Forrest, of Fort Pitt Capital, believes that Goldman is focusing too much on momentum names that have stumbled.

"A lot of the names that are on this list though are fallen angels, fallen momentum angels," Forrest said Friday on CNBC's "Trading Nation." "So that just gives me a cold feeling looking at their list."

However, Forrest does agree with Goldman's broader point in the note prepared by its portfolio strategy research team. Goldman argues that the dispersion of stock returns has risen, meaning that picking particular stocks to outperform may become less of a fool's errand.

"I like them saying, 'Hey, stock pickers, it might be your time,'" she said.

Forrest also thinks that the focus on consumer discretionary and information technology stocks are steps in the right direction. Her own suggestions, however, include clothing retailer Urban Outfitters and memory storage manufacturer SanDisk, both of which Forrest expressed in an email to CNBC as having good growth potential.

On the other hand, Chantico Global founder Gina Sanchez believes that some of the stocks on Goldman's list, such as First Solar and Valero Energy, hold potential.

Transportation fuel manufacturer Valero Energy has dropped by almost 24 percent year to date, but a continued rise in oil could reverse the company's downtrend. First Solar, while not an obvious choice according to Sanchez, could also turn its 28 percent year-to-date drop around.

"First Solar is trading at a premium to the rest of its cohort, which tells us that it's a very high-quality company," said Sanchez. "However, it has a pretty high short interest right now because it really needs something to help pick it up. I think if we saw an increase in oil prices, the interest in solar will pick up again."

Disclosure: Fort Pitt Capital owns Urban Outfitters stocks.


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Michael Santoli

Michael Santoli joined CNBC in October 2015 as a Senior Markets Commentator, based at the network's Global Headquarters in Englewood Cliffs, N.J.  Santoli brings his extensive markets expertise to CNBC's Business Day programming, with a regular appearance on CNBC's “Closing Bell (M-F, 3PM-5PM ET).   In addition, he contributes to CNBCand CNBC PRO, writing regular articles and creating original digital videos.

Previously, Santoli was a Senior Columnist at Yahoo Finance, where he wrote analysis and commentary on the stock market, corporate news and the economy. He also appeared on Yahoo Finance video programs, where he offered insights on the most important business stories of the day, and was a regular contributor to CNBC and other networks.

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