From a massive stock market rally to a spectacular plunge in the space of just two trading days, market turbulence defines today's markets. As investors look for shelter, CNBC identifies buy-rated global stocks that have a track record of stability. To identify these stocks from the U.S. and beyond, CNBC Pro looked up FactSet data on the historical volatility of MSCI World stocks and weeded out those that are more volatile than the index. CNBC then screened for stocks that are up this year and pay a dividend of at least 2%. They are also buy-rated by the majority of analysts covering them, with potential average upside of at least 10% over the next 12 months, according to FactSet data. A host of utility stocks — which have long been sought out during bouts of market volatility — made the screen. The sector has steady, regulated earnings, inflation-based contract clauses and higher dividend income relative to other sectors, making it a classic safe-haven during periods of market upheaval. The sector has beaten an otherwise volatile market this year. It was one of just two sectors on the S & P 500 whose shares rose in the first quarter — the other was energy — ending the period up 4.8%. It has the second-highest dividend yield relative to other sectors on the index, according to Goldman Sachs. Among the utility names on CNBC Pro's screen, Japan's largest gas retailer Tokyo Gas has the lowest historical beta. The stock is up 17.7% and is rated buy by 80% of the analysts covering it. The analysts think the stock has average upside of 13.3%. "Beta" is a measurement of a stock's volatility . A beta of 1 means that a stock's volatility is equal to the market; a beta below 1 means that stock is less volatile than the market. Read more Wall Street likes these defensive stocks, especially during a sell-off These low-volatility funds offer stability when the Dow swings by 1,000 points Stay defensive with these global stocks amid market volatility, analysts say Other utility stocks that made the screen include Germany's RWE , Spain's Iberdrola , U.S energy firm Public Service Enterprise and Ohio-based FirstEnergy . A raft of financial stocks also turned up on the list. Japan Post has the lowest historic beta in this group and the highest potential upside of 18.8%, according to FactSet. The remaining financial stocks are all insurers, including Canada's Intact Financial , Australia's Suncorp , Japan's MS & AD and Denmark's Tryg . Just one health care stock — French pharmaceutical giant Sanofi — made the list. The stock is up 12.9% this year, but analysts see further average upside of 14%. Illinois-based biopharmaceutical firm Abbvie , with a historical beta of 0.8, almost featured, with analysts giving the stock average upside of 9.2%. Biopharma stocks have traditionally been viewed as defensive bets in a volatile market. Large-cap biopharma specifically outperforms the S & P 500 during a recession , according to Wells Fargo analyst Mohit Bansal. A number of consumer staples also made CNBC Pro's screen, including British American Tobacco and Reckitt Benckiser . Coca-Cola , which has a historical beta of 0.6, narrowly missed the cut with potential upside of 9.2%. Analysts like consumer staples for their ability to retain market share and beat the market during periods of rising prices and even recessions. Toyota Motor was the sole automaker on the screen. The stock has a historical beta of 0.8 and has gained nearly 6% this year. Analysts covering the stock sees further upside ahead, with an average potential upside of 12.2%.
A Nasdaq market maker works at the Nasdaq Market site in New York, May 2, 2019.
Brendan McDermid | Reuters
From a massive stock market rally to a spectacular plunge in the space of just two trading days, market turbulence defines today's markets. As investors look for shelter, CNBC identifies buy-rated global stocks that have a track record of stability.