This story has been updated from 3:18 pm ET with updated stock prices and charts.
According to a note to clients titled "Late-Cycle Playbook: Lack of cheap, under-earning sectors favors single-stock selection," investors looking at entire sectors will have a hard time finding value, but there are opportunities on a stock-by-stock basis.
"Today not a single sector screens as being both cheap and under-earning," Goldman analysts Jessica Binder Graham and Christopher Wolf wrote in the April 1 note to clients. "Thus, such a top-down perspective may suggest a lack of 'value' to be found in today's market, but delving down one layer deeper we do find single-stock opportunities with 13% of our coverage fitting these criteria."
Based on this idea, Goldman offered three investment strategies in the note to clients on how to play stocks: buy "cheap under-earners with upside," sell "expensive over-earners" and buy "incremental margin winners."
Goldman found 14 stocks among its coverage list that were either buy- or neutral-rated based on the strategy, which looked specifically at inexpensive stocks that are "incremental margin winners" and are expected to have strong top-line growth in 2016 and 2017.
TheStreet checked up on those "cheap stocks" a month later to see how they had done. We found just six of the 14 were in the black since April 1.
Goldman Sachs has a buy rating and a price target of $800 on Amazon. Amazon's stock is listed on Goldman's "Americas Conviction Buy List."
Amazon is projected to have sales growth of 24% and an EBIT margin of 5% in 2016, according to Goldman.
Shares of VeriFone Systems (PAY) , a San Jose, Calif.-based electronic payments technology and equipment company, are up 0.85% in April.
VeriFone is expected to report quarterly earnings in early June.
Goldman Sachs has a neutral rating and a $31 target price on VeriFone.
VeriFone is projected to have sales growth of 8% in 2016, according to Thomson Reuters. Goldman projects EBIT margins of 7% in 2016, according to the April 1 note.
The Providence, R.I.-based commercial aerospace company reported better-than-expected first-quarter top and bottom line results on April 20.
The company's brands include the Bell helicopter, Cessna aircraft and Beechcraft.
Textron also reaffirmed its earnings-per-share guidance of $2.60 to $2.80 for 2016. Analysts are looking for earnings of $2.71 per share.
Goldman Sachs has a neutral rating and a $41 target price on Textron.
Textron is projected to have sales growth of 5% in 2016, according to Thomson Reuters. Goldman projects EBIT margins of 10% in 2016, according to the April 1 note.
Shares of B/E Aerospace (BEAV) are up 5.4% in April.
On April 20, the Wellington, Fla.-based commercial aerospace company reported first-quarter net income of $82.6 million, or 81 cents a share, ahead of Wall Street expectations.
Goldman Sachs has a buy rating and a $57 target price on B/E Aerospace.
B/E Aerospace is projected to have sales growth of 4% in 2016, according to Thomson Reuters. Goldman projects EBIT margins of 19% in 2016, according to the April 1 note.
The restaurant chain saw shares slump following its quarterly earnings report on April 19 in which it reported sales that missed expectations and same-store sales declines as compared to the prior year's quarter.
Goldman Sachs has a neutral rating and a $45 target price on the Dallas-based owner of several restaurant chains, including Chili's Grill & Bar and Maggianos.
Brinker International is projected to have sales growth of 9% for its fiscal 2016 (which ends in June), according to Thomson Reuters. Goldman projects EBIT margins of 11% in 2016, according to the April 1 note.
Hexcel, which makes advanced composites for the aerospace, space and defense and industrial sectors, reported quarterly profit of $56 million, or 59 cents a share, above Wall Street expectations. Sales rose 5.5% to $497.7 million for the March ending quarter. The company also raised its quarterly dividend by 10% to 11 cents a share.
Goldman Sachs has a neutral rating and a $46 target price on Hexcel.
Hexcel is projected to have sales growth of 8%, according to Thomson Reuters. Goldman projects EBIT margin of 19% in 2016, according to Goldman.