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Top 5 Best-Performing Stocks of the Past Decade

As the market rings in a new year and a new decade, investors look back to reflect on the best-performing stocks in the Standard & Poor's 500 over the past 10 years.

Recovering from the Great Recession, the index has returned nearly 185% since 2010. The S&P 500 has only recorded two years of losses since then as the economy experienced steady growth.




The technology sector left the rest of the market in the dust over the same period as innovation and demand accelerated. Similarly, CNBC reported the semiconductor sector was the best-performing industry of the decade on the back of the rise in cloud infrastructure and data centers.

According to the GuruFocus All-in-One screener, a Premium feature, the top five best-performing stocks listed on the S&P 500 over the past decade were Netflix Inc. (NASDAQ:NFLX), MarketAxess Holdings Inc. (NASDAQ:MKTX), Abiomed Inc. (NASDAQ:ABMD), United Rentals Inc. (NYSE:URI) and Align Technology Inc. (NASDAQ:ALGN).

Netflix

Climbing at an annualized rate of 45.01% over the past 10 years, Netflix has returned a whopping 3,726.2% in total since 2010.

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The Scotts Valley, California-based video streaming giant has a $143.19 billion market cap; its shares were trading around $327.03 on Jan. 2 with a price-earnings ratio of 104.49, a price-book ratio of 20.89 and a price-sales ratio of 7.83.

MarketAxess Holdings

Having posted an annualized gain of 39.56% over the past decade, MarketAxess' stock has risen roughly 2,770% since the beginning of 2010.

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The financial services company, which is headquartered in New York and operates an electronic trading platform, has a market cap of $14.41 billion; its shares were trading around $379.81 on Thursday with a price-earnings ratio of 71.85, a price-book ratio of 20.67 and a price-sales ratio of 29.16.

Abiomed

Recording an annualized return of 34.62% over the past decade, Abiomed's stock has soared nearly 2,009%.

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The Danvers, Massachusetts-based medical device manufacturing company has a $7.76 billion market cap; its shares were trading around $171.39 on Thursday with a price-earnings ratio of 35.97, a price-book ratio of 7.84 and a price-sales ratio of 9.66.

United Rentals

Up 32.75% on an annualized basis, United Rentals has returned 1,557% since 2010.

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The equipment rental company, which is headquartered in Stamford, Connecticut, has a market cap of $12.46 billion; its shares were trading around $165.67 on Thursday with a price-earnings ratio of 11.43, a price-book ratio of 3.45 and a price-sales ratio of 1.42.

Align Technology

Advancing at an annualized rate of 31.67% over the past 10 years, Align Technology posted a total return of 1,432% for the decade.

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The San Jose, California-based orthodontics company, which manufactures 3-D scanners and Invisalign products, has a $22.04 billion market cap; its shares were trading around $280.51 on Thursday with a price-earnings ratio of 53.8, a price-book ratio of 16.88 and a price-sales ratio of 9.82.

Additional top performers of the 2010s

According to the screener, other top-performing stocks in the S&P 500 over the past 10 years included Regeneron Pharmaceuticals Inc. (NASDAQ:REGN), TransDigm Group Inc. (NYSE:TDG), Old Dominion Freight Lines Inc. (NASDAQ:ODFL), Ulta Beauty Inc. (NASDAQ:ULTA) and Amazon.com Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN).

Disclosure: No positions.

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