Among the sub-sectors of the stock market that’s been hit the hardest in 2022, growth certainly leads the pack. Investors who sought out high-growth stocks last year are now focusing on companies with durable competitive advantages, defensive business models, and cash-flow-generating businesses.

Makes sense. But in this current downturn, some high-growth stocks have simply become too attractive to avoid. Despite earnings estimates which are still likely to come down, there are plenty of companies out there worth considering.

The Federal Reserve is likely to keep its foot firmly on the brakes through the first half of the year. However, the market appears to be pricing in a greater probability of a pause and pivot than Fed officials would like to admit. Thus, for those banking on an end-of-year rally, adding some exposure to high-growth stocks right now isn’t a bad idea.

Here are three such companies that I think are worth considering in this current environment. They are among the beaten-down FAANG group of companies. These stocks each have the kind of fundamentals, and defensive posture long-term investors want. And the kicker is they’re all trading far below their peaks right now.

Apple (AAPL)

An Apple MacBook Air laptop sitting under bright purple lights.

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Let’s start off this list of high-growth stocks to buy with the world’s largest company, shall we?

With a projected net income of $94.6 billion in 2022, Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) is among the blue-chip corporations with the strongest financial foundation worldwide. Apple may no longer be a stock with significant growth potential, but the company nonetheless had an 8.1% increase in revenue in the most recent quarter.

Analyst Angelo Zino appreciates Apple’s substantial worldwide ecosystem, growing potential market, and good customer retention rates. Zino is also optimistic about the management team and the firm’s ambitious buyback program. For the AAPL stock, CFRA has a “buy” rating and a $165 price objective.

The market is beginning to perceive less of a need for the Federal Reserve to be proactive about monetary policy in the near future, despite the fact that the Federal Reserve remains typically hawkish about interest rates.

For instance, several regions of Europe appear to be experiencing greater strain on the economy than the US. Investors might find it appealing that over half of Apple’s revenue comes from the Americas, particularly the US, during uncertain economic times worldwide.

Between 2021 and 2022, Apple stock was briefly viewed by many as a gamble on inflation. This kind of encouraging market mood could be advantageous for AAPL as long as consumer prices are high.

Alphabet (GOOG, GOOGL)

GOOG stock: letters spelling out google

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Alphabet (NASDAQ:GOOG, GOOGL), the parent company of Google, YouTube, and Google Cloud, is a world leader in online advertising and search.

In the third quarter of 2022, Alphabet’s revenue growth dropped to only 6.1%. According to Post, Alphabet’s revenue from search and YouTube has been especially disappointing, while its revenue growth from cloud services actually jumped from 36% to 38% in the quarter.

Alphabet, according to a leading market analyst, is “a defensive stock with value support,” and given its strong cash flow, it may be eligible for significant stock buybacks. The stock also has a “buy” rating and a $114 price target from Bank of America.

Alphabet announced over a 6% increase in sales for the third quarter, which includes a 38% increase in cloud revenue. According to Zino, Alphabet is valued favorably in comparison to other large-cap tech firms. According to Zino, Alphabet has outstanding cash flow potential and can support long-term revenue growth of between 7% and 11%. For GOOGL stock, CFRA has a “buy” rating and a $120 price objective.

Amazon (AMZN)

An image of an Amazon logo on a building

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A leading e-commerce giant, Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN), really needs no introduction. This tech juggernaut has been on an impressive decline of late, dropping nearly 50% in 2022 alone. Of course, compared to the broader tech sector, that sort of underperformance is really unheard of. Accordingly, many long-term investors are now viewing this massive e-commerce player ass a compelling contrarian pick for 2023.

I’m one such investor.

Amazon’s Q4 revenue projection, according to Bank of America analyst Justin Post, was “very disappointing,” but he maintains that the business is still a “share gainer with loads of leverage ahead.” He predicts that as macroeconomic conditions improve, Amazon can increase margins, and over the next three years, Amazon Web Services, advertising, and third-party services will have a potential profit of $69 billion.

Investors may be disappointed by Amazon’s earnings growth during the coming year, but according to analyst Arun Sundaram, the company is well-positioned for long-term profit growth due to its investments in efficiency, cost control, and high-margin industries like cloud services and advertising. Sundaram anticipates a slowing of Amazon’s revenue growth to 8% in 2023. AMZN, which ended at $89.09 on December 9th, has a “buy” rating from CFRA and a $152 price target.

Also, this stock currently has a “buy” rating and a $137 price target from BoA.

On the date of publication, Chris MacDonald has a position in AAPL and AMZN. The opinions expressed in this article are those of the writer, subject to the InvestorPlace.com Publishing Guidelines.

Chris MacDonald’s love for investing led him to pursue an MBA in Finance and take on a number of management roles in corporate finance and venture capital over the past 15 years. His experience as a financial analyst in the past, coupled with his fervor for finding undervalued growth opportunities, contribute to his conservative, long-term investing perspective.