Why Growth Hunters Must Check Out Unilever plc, ARM Holdings plc & Taylor Wimpey plc!

Today I’m running the rule over three FTSE 100 growth stars.

Construct colossal returns

I feel certain that housebuilding giants like Taylor Wimpey (LSE: TW) are some of the safest destinations for those seeking cast-iron earnings growth.

Make no mistake, the country’s chronic housing shortage is set to last for some time yet. Homes are simply not being built at the rate that’s desperately required, with the government’s ‘Help To Buy’ scheme — allied with generous lending conditions, falling unemployment and rising wages — propelling demand relentlessly higher.

Data released by the Office for National Statistics this week underlined the scale of Britain’s housing market imbalance. Property prices galloped ahead 8.6% year-on-year in January, the organisation noted, taking the average UK home price to £292,000.

Against this backcloth Taylor Wimpey is anticipated to enjoy earnings growth of 16% and 8% in 2016 and 2017, respectively. And subsequent P/E ratios of 10.9 times and 10.1 times make the homebuilder too good to pass up on, in my opinion.

Chip in

Galloping demand for smartphones and tablet PCs has underpinned sterling profits growth at ARM Holdings (LSE: ARM) for many years now.

But more recently, signs of market saturation for these devices has prompted many to question whether the tech play can keep earnings shooting skywards. I don’t share these concerns however — ARM Holdings sets the standard when it comes to microchip design, allowing it to defend and gain market share from its competitors.

Meanwhile, the firm’s position as the chipbuilder of choice has also seen its expansion into hot new sectors like servers, networking and the mysteriously-monikered ‘internet of things’ from the get-go.

The City expects ARM Holdings to therefore follow a projected 43% earnings bounce this year with a 13% advance in 2017. While these figures leave the firm dealing on high ‘paper’ earnings multiples, at 29.3 times and 25.8 times, respectively, I believe the prospect of prolonged earnings propulsion still makes the business a terrific pick at current prices.

Brand brilliance

Regardless of broad economic pressure on consumers’ wallets, household goods giant Unilever (LSE: ULVR) has still managed to grid out earnings growth year after year, thanks to the strength of its product portfolio.

Goods like Magnum ice cream, Lynx deodorant and Lipton tea carry formidable pricing power that enables the firm to steadily raise prices and keep revenues rising. Meanwhile, Unilever’s exposure to a wide range of consumer markets provides its earnings outlook with additional strength.

On top of this, the London business is also doubling-down on cost-slashing to provide the bottom line with a further boost — indeed, a combination of shrewd pricing and cost savings drove gross margins 80 basis points higher in 2015, to 42.2%.

Given these factors, the number crunchers expect Unilever to enjoy earnings rises of 7% in both 2015 and 2016. Subsequent P/E ratios of 21.5 times and 20 times may appear conventionally heady, but I believe — like ARM Holdings — that Unilever’s market-leading products more than merit such a premium.

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Royston Wild has no position in any shares mentioned. The Motley Fool UK owns shares of and has recommended Unilever. The Motley Fool UK has recommended ARM Holdings. We Fools don't all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors.