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10 Best Basic Material Stocks to Buy Now

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·7 min read
In this article:
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  • BHP
  • ALB
  • CX
  • MT
  • CE
  • FCX
  • DD

In this article, we will take a look at the 10 best basic material stocks to buy now. You can skip our detailed analysis of these companies and go directly to the 5 Best Basic Material Stocks to Buy Now.

Over the last few decades, rising demand for raw materials to support infrastructure development, industrialization, and technological advancement have increased basic material providers' volumes, pricing power, and revenue. Some of the biggest raw material producers that benefit from the continuous structural changes in global economies include BHP Group (NYSE:BHP), Freeport-McMoRan Inc. (NYSE:FCX), Dow Inc. (NYSE:DOW), and DuPont de Nemours, Inc. (NYSE:DD). These companies are capitalizing on the increased flow of investments in a variety of industries such as metals and mining, chemicals, construction materials, packaging, and forest products.

Major Catalysts in the Basic Material Sector

Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, several countries around the world are increasing infrastructure spending to prevent billions of losses due to traffic congestion, poorly maintained airports, and inefficient energy systems. In the United States, the Senate recently approved a $1 trillion infrastructure bill to repair the country's aging roads and bridges, airports, public transit, as well as support new climate resilience and broadband network projects.

Following that, lithium producer Albemarle Corporation (NYSE:ALB) and aluminum manufacturer Alcoa Corporation (NYSE:AA) are also benefiting from the growing adoption of electric vehicles globally. In July, the world's biggest and specialty chemicals company Albemarle Corporation (NYSE:ALB) announced a new lithium battery lab in North Carolina, where the company plans to develop better batteries for electric vehicles.

10 Best Basic Material Stocks to Buy Now
10 Best Basic Material Stocks to Buy Now

Image by Rolf Dobberstein from Pixabay

Our Methodology

Our stocks were chosen based on their fundamentals and growth prospects. We included companies engaged in the exploration and production of basic materials including copper, lithium, cement, aluminum, and steel. We also considered companies that are operating in the production of specialty chemicals and packaging materials.

The hedge fund sentiment around each stock was gauged using the data of 873 hedge funds tracked by Insider Monkey. The stocks are arranged according to the number of hedge fund holders in each company.

Why should we pay attention to hedge fund sentiment while choosing stocks? Insider Monkey’s research was able to identify in advance a select group of hedge fund holdings that outperformed the S&P 500 ETFs by more than 86 percentage points since March 2017. Between March 2017 and July 2021, our monthly newsletter’s stock picks returned 186.1%, vs. 100.1% for the SPY. Our stock picks outperformed the market by 86 percentage points (see the details here). That’s why we believe hedge fund sentiment is an extremely useful indicator that investors should pay attention to. You can subscribe to our free newsletter on our homepage to receive our stories in your inbox.

Let’s now look at the 10 best basic material stocks to buy now.

Best Basic Material Stocks to Buy Now

10. BHP Group (NYSE:BHP)

Number of Hedge Fund Holders: 18

We start our list of the best basic material stocks to buy now with one of the largest mining companies in the world, BHP Group (NYSE:BHP). The Australian basic materials company primarily operates in manufacturing iron ore, silver, copper, and nickel. BHP Group (NYSE:BHP) also operates a segment engaged in crude oil and natural gas extraction.

On October 11, Bernstein and Macquarie both gave an Outperform ratings on BHP Group (NYSE:BHP), alongside price targets of A$45 and A$56 respectively.

Despite the announcement that BHP Group's (NYSE:BHP) energy business would be merged with Woodside Petroleum Ltd, hedge funds remained bullish on the Australian mining company. Multiple hedge funds have upped their stakes in BHP Group (NYSE:BHP) as of June including Citadel Investment Group which increased its BHP shares by 238% to 434,740 worth $31.7 million. Schonfeld Strategic Advisors and Marshall Wace LLP also increased their stake in the mining company by 261% and 132%, respectively. At the end of the second quarter of 2021, there were 18 hedge funds that have positions in BHP Group (NYSE:BHP) worth $753 million.

9. ArcelorMittal (NYSE:MT)

Number of Hedge Fund Holders: 22

Luxembourg-based steel manufacturing company ArcelorMittal (NYSE:MT) ranks ninth on the list of 10 best basic material stocks to buy now. The company produces and supplies steel for a variety of applications including automotive manufacturing, construction, and energy infrastructure. In addition, ArcelorMittal (NYSE:MT) operates mining facilities in Canada, Ukraine, Brazil, Liberia, Bosnia, Mexico, and Kazakhstan. In 2020, the company was able to produce 58 million tonnes of iron ore.

On October 4, Goldman Sachs analyst Jack O'Brien maintained a Buy rating on ArcelorMittal (NYSE:MT), with a price target of EUR 42 per share.

At the end of the second quarter, 22 of the 873 elite funds tracked by Insider Monkey were long ArcelorMittal (NYSE:MT), up from 21 in the first quarter of 2021. Raiv Jain of GQG Partners, one of the largest shareholders in the steel stock, has boosted his holdings in ArcelorMittal (NYSE:MT) by 92% to 23.7 million shares worth $738 million as of September 13.

8. CEMEX, S.A.B. de C.V. (NYSE:CX)

Number of Hedge Fund Holders: 23

Mexican cement producer CEMEX, S.A.B. de C.V. (NYSE:CX) ranks eighth on the list of 10 best material stocks to buy now. The cement maker sells ready-mix concrete and constructions materials globally.

On October 11, Citi analyst Andres Cardona upgraded CEMEX, S.A.B. de C.V. (NYSE:CX) to Buy from Neutral, with a $9.30 price target, citing the 27% fall from recent highs of the share price as an excellent opportunity to buy the cement stock.

CEMEX, S.A.B. de C.V. (NYSE:CX) grew its revenue by 25% year over year to $3.9 billion in the second quarter of 2021 driven by higher volumes and prices across all of its products globally.

CEMEX, S.A.B. de C.V. (NYSE:CX), along with BHP Group (NYSE:BHP), Freeport-McMoRan Inc. (NYSE:FCX), Dow Inc. (NYSE:DOW), and DuPont de Nemours and Company (NYSE:DD), is one of the basic material providers benefiting from rising raw material prices.

At the end of the second quarter of 2021, 23 hedge funds in the database of Insider Monkey held stakes worth $601 million in CEMEX, S.A.B. de C.V. (NYSE:CX), down from 24 hedge funds in the previous quarter worth $471 million.

7. Albemarle Corporation (NYSE:ALB)

Number of Hedge Fund Holders: 28

Albemarle Corporation (NYSE:ALB) is a North Carolina-based lithium producer that ranks seventh on the list of 10 best material stocks to buy now. The company has been in the business of chemical manufacturing and lithium battery production since 1887 and has established operations internationally including Europe, Western Australia, the Middle East, East Asia, and Chile. Albemarle Corporation (NYSE:ALB) is one of the world's biggest suppliers of lithium batteries for electric vehicles.

Albemarle Corporation (NYSE:ALB) is also a good stock to buy for income investors as the company currently pays its shareholders an annual dividend of $1.56 per share and offers a dividend yield of 0.73%.

On October 4, investment bank Loop Capital kept a Buy rating on Albemarle Corporation (NYSE:ALB) and increased its price target for the stock to $280 from $253.

6. Celanese Corporation (NYSE:CE)

Number of Hedge Fund Holders: 37

One of the biggest acetyl products manufacturers in the world, Celanese Corporation (NYSE:CE) ranks sixth on the list of 10 best material stocks to buy now. The Texas-based chemical and specialty materials company supplies polymers for medical, industrial, automotive, and consumer electronics applications. In addition, the chemical company produces preservatives and sweeteners.

Celanese Corporation (NYSE:CE) continues to actively explore acquisitions despite providing chemicals and specialized materials in practically every industry. In June, the chemical company announced its acquisition of Exxon Mobil Corporation's (NYSE:XOM)'s Santoprene business for approximately $1.15 billion. The deal is anticipated to close in Q4 2021.

On October 5, Wells Fargo analyst Michael Sison kept an Overweight rating on Celanese Corporation (NYSE:CE) and increased his price target for the stock to $188 from $186. Meanwhile, Thomas E. Claugus of GMT Capital is one of the biggest stakeholders of Celanese Corporation (NYSE:CE) as of the end of the second quarter, according to the data tracked by Insider Monkey. Overall, 37 funds were bullish on Celanese Corporation (NYSE:CE) by the end of the June quarter, compared to 36 in the previous quarter.

Click to continue reading and see the 5 Best Basic Material Stocks to Buy Now.

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Disclosure: None. 10 Best Material Stocks to Buy Now is originally published on Insider Monkey.