As President Trump’s time in office draws to a close, conservatives are faced with questions about the direction of the Republican Party. WSJ’s Gerald F. Seib explains. Photo illustration: Laura Kammermann
As President Trump’s time in office draws to a close, conservatives are faced with questions about the direction of the Republican Party. WSJ’s Gerald F. Seib explains. Photo illustration: Laura Kammermann
When you start hearing about day trading at volume, you know the markets have gotten frothy and buying and holding long-term stocks isn’t a top priority for investors. But times like these are precisely when it should be. Trying to time trades is tricky business, even for Wall Street bigshots who have been trading for decades with state of the art equipment and a lifetime of institutional knowledge – and occasionally an advanced degree in mathematics. Trying to outsmart these people or play their game over the long term might be entertaining, but if your goal is to make money, I wouldn’t bother. Finding companies with solid fundamentals in key industries and buying for the long-term might be boring, but it makes money.InvestorPlace - Stock Market News, Stock Advice & Trading Tips 9 Stocks That Investors Think Are the Next Amazon Here are 7 long-term stocks to buy you’ll want to hang onto: Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) Clorox (NYSE:CLX) JD.com (NASDAQ:JD) PayPal (NASDAQ:PYPL) Qualcomm (NASDAQ:QCOM) Shopify (NASDAQ:SHOP) Sony (NYSE:SNE) These companies deserve your attention for the future because of how well they’ve handled the past. Long-term Stocks To Buy: Amazon (AMZN) Source: Sundry Photography / Shutterstock.com There are few companies that can turn into a global retail brand the way AMZN has done. From a humble online bookseller in the 1990s to market juggernaut in just three decades, Amazon has been on quite the journey. Now it’s hard for most Americans to imagine a day that doesn’t somehow involve an Amazon product. Whole Foods for grocery shopping (if you’re not buying supplies off its website). Prime for watching shows and movies. Of course, its bread-and-butter retail and logistics operations. And of course, cloud computing behemoth Amazon Web Services provides plenty of cash to keep all its new and existing ventures running. When the pandemic hit, everyone realized how valuable AMZN had become. But its value is much more now, as it holds a nearly $1.6 trillion market cap. It is kind of a one-stock index of the entire modern economy. If you’re a long-term bull on the U.S., AMZN is a long-term stock for you. Up 70% in the past year, its pace may vary but its continued growth isn’t in question. Clorox (CLX) Source: TY Lim / Shutterstock.com This company’s beginnings stand almost in direct opposition to that of AMZN. CLX made one product, bleach, for nearly 50 years and built a big business out of it. Now more than 100 years old, CLX has diversified its product line a bit, though not significantly. Now it has a portfolio of around 50 brands that are sold in over 100 countries. Reliable names like Glad, Handi Wipes, Liquid-Plumr, Pine-Sol and Tilex along with its titular Clorox line. This is a classic long-term US stock. During the pandemic, cleaning and disinfecting products have been in high demand at home and abroad. CLX stock remains rock solid. And that’s to be expected after growing through two World Wars, the Great Depression and everything else that has come its way. 9 Stocks That Investors Think Are the Next Amazon Up 24% in the past 12 months, it’s still trading at a P/E of 21 — below the average forward P/E of the S&P 500 — with plenty of growth ahead. JD.com (JD) Source: Sundry Photography / Shutterstock.com The growth of digital channels in the U.S. is mirrored in China, where its domestic market is almost an order of magnitude larger than U.S. market. The potential is huge. Also, the Chinese market operates a bit differently than the U.S. Large companies tend to work with each other to leverage their most important assets rather than try to compete head to head. But they also diversify. For example, JD is like the AMZN of China (and other Asian nations). It has expanded into logistics, AI, fintech and other sectors. Yet for all of its strength, it trades at one-tenth the market cap of AMZN and that’s after a 127% run in the past 12 months. Certainly there’s some trade risk here, as the U.S. threatens to delist Chinese firms from U.S. exchanges, but JD is far down that list. This is a top long-term stock for the China’s and Asia’s consumers. PayPal (PYPL) Source: JHVEPhoto / Shutterstock.com This is the company that launched Elon Musk before he became the maverick CEO we all know today. Even back then Musk was a handful, getting deposed as CEO after a couple years but still holding more stock than anyone else when eBay (NASDAQ:EBAY) purchased PYPL in 2002. That became the seed capital for Musk’s later ventures. But beyond the personality, PYPL is a pioneer in electronic payments and now in peer-to-peer (P2P) payments with its Venmo app. Time and again Wall Street has dismissed PYPL as not having the kind of financial reputation or muscle to take on the big financial institutions in the digital space. And time and again, PYPL has proven them wrong. The past year has been a boon for PYPL’s model and has showed that big banks weren’t altogether ready for the quick and massive shift to digital. And PYPL now has credit services as well as other payment platforms. 9 Stocks That Investors Think Are the Next Amazon The stock is up over 113% in the past 12 months and it’s now here to stay. Qualcomm (QCOM) Source: jejim / Shutterstock.com We’re well ensconced in the Mobility Age at this point. By that I mean what started as the digital revolution has now moved to the point where wireless networks keep us connected nearly all the time, much to some people’s chagrin. But the fact is, despite the downsides, there are plenty of upsides too. And now that 5G telecom tech is upon us, data will be flowing even faster than before. One the beneficiaries and leaders in pushing digital mobility further is QCOM, one of the world’s leading telecom companies. Its business model is unique because it develops chips and telecom equipment but makes money licensing the technology for others to manufacture and also taking a cut of sales. Both U.S. and Chinese (and others) phone makers rely on state of the art QCOM chips, especially for 5G. QCOM just signed a new deal to rekindle relations with Chinese phone makers earlier this week. As long as mobility is a thing, this is a long-term stock to own. The stock is up 75% in the past 12 months, yet the stock is trading at a P/E of 35. Shopify (SHOP) Source: Paul McKinnon / Shutterstock.com With unemployment nearing 6.7% and many states admitting that the pandemic has hampered their ability to accurately count the unemployed, there are a lot of Americans trying to figure out how to bring in a paycheck. Many have turned to driving Uber or Lyft, although passenger numbers are down significantly now as well. And taxis are even worse. That has led many to try their hands at turning their hobbies into businesses. And that’s where SHOP comes in. It’s a cloud-based platform that helps small and mid-sized business build out professional websites. The stock is up nearly 1000% over the past three years, and much of that has come in the past two years, as the economy has slowed. Vaccines may be on the way, and the government is working through another stimulus package, but the damage done to the economy has yet to be seen clearly given all the other issues facing the nation. 9 Stocks That Investors Think Are the Next Amazon This stock is up 167% in the past year and has plenty of potential growth ahead. Sony (SNE) Source: Girts Ragelis / Shutterstock.com Launched in 1946 in Japan, SNE has been known to every generation since for various electronics. For decades, SNE made the best televisions in the world after launching the first all-transistor television in 1959 and taking the global television market by storm. Then came the video generation. Then the Walkman generation, when SNE defined personal, portable music. And now, it’s the PlayStation videogame system. Along the way, it has moved into the entertainment industry, on both the content and equipment sides. Its contributions to our electronic era are practically too numerous to list and Sony continues to be a formidable player. The thing is, it generally cuts a low profile. SNE stock is currently up more than 43% in the past 12 months, yet trades at a P/E below 15. This durable, quality electronics firm may not garner headlines, but it still is a revered and important brand, generation after generation. Disclosure: On the date of publication, Louis Navellier had positions in AMZN, CLX, JD, PYPL and SHOP in this article. Louis Navellier did not have (either directly or indirectly) any other positions in the securities mentioned in this article. The InvestorPlace Research Staff member primarily responsible for this article did not hold (either directly or indirectly) any positions in the securities mentioned in this article. Louis Navellier had an unconventional start, as a grad student who accidentally built a market-beating stock system — with returns rivaling even Warren Buffett. In his latest feat, Louis discovered the “Master Key” to profiting from the biggest tech revolution of this (or any) generation. More From InvestorPlace Why Everyone Is Investing in 5G All WRONG Top Stock Picker Reveals His Next 1,000% Winner It doesn’t matter if you have $500 in savings or $5 million. Do this now. The post 7 Long-Term Stocks To Buy Youâll Want To Hang Onto appeared first on InvestorPlace.
President-elect Joe Biden’s $1.9 trillion “rescue plan” released on Thursday calls for three key tax improvements for 2021 that would help Americans across the income spectrum.
Hexavest of Montreal slashed each of its positions in Apple, Intel, and Microsoft stock, and initiated a small position in electric-vehicle firm Nio in the fourth quarter.
New retirees are like recent college graduates — they’re on their own after years of the same routine, and they have to find a new path to follow. This type of retiree ventures into the unknown, taking on a new job they’ve never done before.
If you haven't heard about the saver's credit, you'll want to get up to speed.
With stocks such as Nio (NYSE:NIO) and Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA) in the midst of seemingly undaunted ascents, electric vehicle ETFs are among the examples of thematic exchange traded funds stepping into the spotlight. For many investors, particularly those priced out of Tesla or those new to this space, electric vehicle ETFs make a lot of sense. The funds remove the need for investors to identify the best individual names, over diversity and many lack significant exposure to some of the more challenged EV stocks. Additionally, these thematic ETFs make for ideal plays on the Biden Administration’s renewable energy priorities, including the president-elect’s goal of building 550,000 EV charging stations over the next decade, which would reduce concerns about time in between charges, likely boosting EV demand in the process.InvestorPlace - Stock Market News, Stock Advice & Trading Tips 9 Stocks That Investors Think Are the Next Amazon The new president probably won’t be able to put an EV in every driveway, at least not anytime soon, but this administration and Congress are viewed as hospitable to the auto industries electric evolution and that could benefit the following electric vehicle ETFs. Global X Autonomous & Electric Vehicles (NASDAQ:DRIV) KraneShares Electric Vehicles & Future Mobility ETF (NYSEARCA:KARS) SPDR Kensho Smart Mobility ETF (NYSEARCA:HAIL) iShares Self-Driving EV and Tech ETF (NYSEARCA:IDRV) Global X Lithium & Battery Technology ETF (NYSE:LIT) Electric Vehicle ETFs: Global X Autonomous & Electric Vehicles ETF (DRIV) Source: Grisha Bruev / Shutterstock.com Expense ratio: 0.68%, or $68 annually on a $10,000 investment The Global X Autonomous & Electric Vehicles ETF is reflective of the newness of the EV investing concept. DRIV turns three years old in April and is one of the oldest ETFs in this category. With $311.20 million in assets under management, it’s also one of the largest. DRIV holds 76 stocks, which is a fairly deep bench for an electric vehicle ETF and none of its holdings exceed a weight of 5.16%. Tesla and Nio are DRIV’s largest and third-largest holdings, respectively, combining for about 8% of the ETF’s roster. Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) and Nvidia (NASDAQ:NVDA) are also found among the fund’s top 10 holdings. Exposure to those two traditional tech names is another indication of DRIV’s depth – the ETF features exposure to five sectors led by consumer cyclical and technology. DRIV is also geographically diverse as stocks from a roughly a dozen countries are represented in the fund. Positioned as an EV ETF, DRIV offers surprising depth into the broader renewable energy ecosystem and is a credible avenue for EV derivatives (think semiconductors). KraneShares Electric Vehicles & Future Mobility ETF (KARS) Source: Shutterstock Expense ratio: 0.72% KraneShares is usually known for its nifty lineup of China and emerging markets funds, but investors shouldn’t sleep on the KraneShares Electric Vehicles & Future Mobility ETF. KARS turns three years old next week and has $101.40 million, confirming there’s room for competition in the electric vehicle ETF arena. KARS tracks the Solactive Electric Vehicles and Future Mobility Index and similar to the aforementioned DRIV, the KraneShares fund goes beyond vehicle manufacturers to touch multiple corners of the EV landscape. In fact, Tesla isn’t a KARS component and five of its top 10 holdings, including Nvidia, are semiconductor equities. KARS capitalizes on KraneShares strong China competency as many of the ETF’s holdings, including Nio, are Chinese companies. That’s relevant to investors because the world’s second-largest economy is the biggest EV market. SPDR Kensho Smart Mobility ETF (HAIL) Source: xiaorui / Shutterstock.com Expense ratio: 0.45% The SPDR Kensho Smart Mobility ETF isn’t a dedicated electric vehicle fund. Rather, it’s a broad based play that’s arguably the most futuristic transportation ETF on the market. Looking for old guard airlines, freight haulers and railroad operators? Look elsewhere because HAIL delivers transportation’s tomorrow today. The underlying benchmark, the S&P Kensho Smart Transportation Index, provides exposure to “the areas of autonomous and connected vehicle technology, drones and drone technologies used for commercial and civilian applications, and advanced transportation tracking and transport optimization systems,” according to State Street. Home to 59 stocks, HAIL offers an expansive lineup that features EV manufacturers, such as Nio and Tesla, charging station operators, auto parts makers and semiconductor producers. Overall, more than 20 industry groups are represented in this SPDR ETF and its 0.45% expense ratio is among the lowest in the category. iShares Self-Driving EV and Tech ETF (IDRV) Source: pio3 / Shutterstock.com Expense ratio: 0.47% The iShares Self-Driving EV and Tech ETF follows the FactSet Global Autonomous Driving and Electric Vehicle Index and is one of the more basic EV ETFs on the market, but that’s not a slight because the iShares fund is higher by 67.4% over the past year, IDRV’s roster makes for an easy comp with the aforementioned DRIV as the iShares fund features allocations to Tesla and Nio as well as Apple and Nvidia. However, the rivals aren’t mirror images of each other because the Global X fund sharply outperformed its iShares competitor over the past year while IDRV offers a much lower fee. IDRV offers a bit more depth with 100 components, but the bottom line in this mini rivalry is that investors shouldn’t not hold both ETFs at the same time because there’s too much overlap. Global X Lithium & Battery Tech ETF (LIT) Source: Lightboxx/ShutterStock.com Expense ratio: 0.75% The Global X Lithium & Battery Tech ETF was an EV ETF before there were real EV ETFs, which is to say the $2.63 billion four-star rated fund turned 10 years old last July. At that age, it’s also fair to say LIT is one of the pioneers of the thematic ETF movement. LIT’s success attributable to several factors, not the least of which are early adopters’ willingness to bet on increased demand and Global X seeing past near-sighted critics that, a decade ago, call LIT too focused a fund to gain widespread acceptance. These days, LIT ranks as one of the premier avenues for accessing the “ingredients” side of the EV story and the fund is higher by 158% over the past year – a stellar showing considering Tesla isn’t even 6% of the fund’s weight. “At a high level, the industry’s ecosystem starts upstream with lithium miners that extract the metal from the earth,” according to Global X research. “These raw materials then move into the chemical conversion process to produce lithium carbonate or lithium hydroxide. Battery producers combine carbonate or hydroxide with materials to form a cathode and an anode, together forming an individual battery cell. Thousands of cells may be combined to create a battery pack for an EV.” On the date of publication, Todd Shriber did not have (either directly or indirectly) any positions in any of the securities mentioned in this article. Todd Shriber has been an InvestorPlace contributor since 2014. More From InvestorPlace Why Everyone Is Investing in 5G All WRONG Top Stock Picker Reveals His Next 1,000% Winner It doesn’t matter if you have $500 in savings or $5 million. Do this now. The post 5 Electric Vehicle ETFs Getting a Big Biden Boost appeared first on InvestorPlace.
Most financial markets will be closed for the celebration of the civil rights leader's life, the first one since protests over the killing of George Floyd touched off massive protests across the nation.
Biden stimulus buzz may be waning, as the market rally had a healthy pullback. So did Tesla. Qualcomm and JPMorgan are near buy points.
At a time when millions of people are strapped for money and counting on their income tax refund or a stimulus check, they’ll have to wait a little longer before they can file their taxes. Feb. 12 marks the first date the Internal Revenue Service will start accepting and processing returns. Tax season started Jan. 27 last year.
Investors chasing possible vaccine stocks might be puzzled by the market’s treatment of Pfizer (NASDAQ:PFE) and wondering why Pfizer stock isn’t trading higher. Source: Manuel Esteban / Shutterstock.com After all, the New York-based multinational pharmaceutical giant (and its German partner) gained prominence in the battle against the novel coronavirus with an innovative vaccine that apparently delivers impressive protection against Covid-19. This success fueled hope around the world the pandemic can be contained. Boy howdy, shouldn’t that send a company’s soaring?InvestorPlace - Stock Market News, Stock Advice & Trading Tips 9 Stocks That Investors Think Are the Next Amazon Perhaps, but the market – and those who use it – evaluate a stock’s value via a complicate assessment. This review incorporates many factors, primarily the strength of a company’s financial fundamentals. Other factors include demand for products and consumer support. Pfizer Stock at a Glance PFE rose over the course of last year. Most likely, traders “priced in” that performance some time ago. Generally, the market has a forward-looking perspective. This outlook can be disrupted, but those effects tend to brief. To me, Pfizer stock is more a candidate for slow-and-steady status than spectacular surges. The market already rewarded the stock for its vaccine success. Continued success over the course of this year will almost certainly buoy PFE shares. This will make it easier for the stock to climb on the back of other good news. Pfizer stock is attractive to investors with a long view because of its development pipeline. The company is focused on generating new products to replace revenue from older medicines. Pfizer has taken steps to move older medicines to other companies. This demonstrates its commitment to stay streamlined and nimble. Pfizer’s Covid-19 vaccine is a prime example. Pfizer did not invent the vaccine. Rather, it was a process by BioNTech (NASDAQ:BNTX), a small German-based biotech company, that forms the basis of the anti-Covid drug. Officials of the German company approached Pfizer about partnering to bring it to market. By being nimble, Pfizer was able to quickly form the partnership and, together with BioNTech, deliver the important vaccine. This is impressive because Pfizer is a massive company. Its 2019 drug sales revenue totaled $51.8 billion. The consistency of Pfizer stock is shown by its 52-week trading range. PFE topped the last year at $43.08 per share. But its low point was $27.88, which is far better than many popular stocks. The company’s market cap is about $206.7 billion and its price-earnings ratio about 24. Its dividend is 4.2%. A Long-Term Play As I wrote earlier, Pfizer stock is an excellent candidate for a long-term portfolio. That is, the investor not drawn by quick pops and drops but rather solid performance over years versus months or even days. I am not alone in this assessment. My InvestorPlace colleague Larry Ramer recently said the equity won’t soar but it fits the bill for conservative long-term investors. In his article on Jan. 7, Ramer cited the company’s development program and admirable dividend: I stand by my belief that Pfizer stock is unlikely to get a further, meaningful lift from the vaccine for the coronavirus… As a result, I remain convinced that short-term investors and those looking for a relatively fast growth should not buy the shares. For conservative, long-term investors and those looking for dividend income, Pfizer, however, looks like an excellent buy. Income investors will appreciate that Pfizer has raised its payout several times and that is expected to continue. Also, the company has promising new drugs in development and none slated to sunset for several years. The Bottom Line Pfizer stock was favored by many investors before its success with a coronavirus vaccine. The company nurtures its drug development program but also is ready for deals with others to bring products to consumers. And remember, its relationship with BioNTech isn’t limited to the Covid-19 vaccine but includes other products as well. Combined with a hearty dividend of about 4.2%, Pfizer stock is a buy for investors seeking a solid pharma firm. On the date of publication, Larry Sullivan did not have (either directly or indirectly) any positions in any of the securities mentioned in this article. Larry Sullivan is a veteran journalist in Florida who has covered banking and finance for several years. He is a former investing editor at U.S. News & World Report in Washington D.C. and began writing for InvestorPlace in 2020. More From InvestorPlace Why Everyone Is Investing in 5G All WRONG Top Stock Picker Reveals His Next 1,000% Winner It doesn’t matter if you have $500 in savings or $5 million. Do this now. The post Why Pfizer Is a Long-Term Investorâs Friend appeared first on InvestorPlace.
At 8.6% interest on its savings accounts, crypto fintech platform BlockFi is offering an interesting option for savers disappointed with low rates.
Watching the markets with an eye to the main chance, Raymond James strategist Tavis McCourt sees both risk and opportunity in current market conditions. The opportunity, in his opinion, stems from the obvious factors: the Democrats won both Georgia Senate seats in the recent runoff vote, giving the incoming Biden Administration majority support in both Houses of Congress – and increasing the odds of meaningful fiscal support getting signed into law in the near term. More importantly, the coronavirus vaccination program is proceeding, and reports are showing that Pfizer’s vaccine, one of two approved in the US, is effective against the new strain of the virus. A successful vaccination program will speed up the economic recovery, allowing states to loosen lockdown regulations – and get people back to work. The risks are also coming from the political and public health realms. The House Democrats have passed articles of impeachment against President Trump, despite the imminent natural closure of his term of office, and that passage reduces the chances of political reconciliation in a heavily polarized environment. And while the COVID strain is matched by current vaccines, there is still a risk that a new strain will develop that is not covered by existing vaccinations – which could restart the cycle of lockdowns and economic decline. Another risk McCourt sees, beyond those two, would be a sharp rise in inflation. He doesn’t discount that, but sees it as unlikely to happen soon. “…product/service inflation is only really a possibility AFTER re-openings, so the market feels a bit bullet proof in the very near term, and thus the continued rally, with Dems winning the GA races just adding fuel to the stimulus fire,” McCourt noted. Some of McCourt’s colleagues among the Raymond James analyst cadre are keeping these risks in mind, and putting their imprimatur on strong dividend stocks. We’ve looked into Raymond James' recent calls, and using the TipRanks database, we’ve chosen two stocks with high-yield dividends. These Buy-rated tickers bring a dividend yield of 7%, a strong attraction for investors interested in using the current good times to set up a defensive firewall should the risks materialize. Enterprise Products Partners (EPD) We’ll start in the energy sector, a business segment long known for both high cash flows and high dividends. Enterprise Products Partners is a midstream company, part of the network that moves hydrocarbon products from the wellheads to the storage farms, refineries, and distribution points. Enterprise controls over 50,000 miles worth of pipelines, shipping terminals on Texas’ Gulf coast, and storage facilities for 160 million barrels oil and 14 billion cubic feet of natural gas. The company was hurt by low prices and low demand in 1H20, but partially recovered in the second half. Revenues turned around, growing 27% sequentially to reach $6.9 billion in Q3. That number was down year-over-year, slipping 5.4%, but came in more than 6% above the Q3 forecast. Q3 earnings, at 48 cents per share, were just under the forecast, but were up 4% year-over-year and 2% sequentially. EPD has recently declared its 4Q20 dividend distribution, at 45 cents per common share. This is up from the previous payment of 44 cents, and marks the first increase in two years. At $1.80 annualized, the payment yields 7.9%. Among the bulls is Raymond James' Justin Jenkins, who rates EPD a Strong Buy. The analyst gives the stock a $26 price target, which implies a 15% upside from current levels. (To watch Jenkins’ track record, click here) Backing his bullish stance, Jenkins noted, "In our view, EPD's unique combination of integration, balance sheet strength, and ROIC track record remains best in class. We see EPD as arguably best positioned to withstand the volatile landscape… With EPD's footprint, demand gains, project growth, and contracted ramps should more than offset supply headwinds and lower y/y marketing results…" It’s not often that the analysts all agree on a stock, so when it does happen, take note. EPD’s Strong Buy consensus rating is based on a unanimous 9 Buys. The stock’s $24.63 average price target suggests an upside of 9% from the current share price of $22.65. (See EPD stock analysis on TipRanks) AT&T, Inc. (T) AT&T is one of the market’s instantly recognizable stock. The company is a member in long standing of the S&P 500, and it has reputation as one of the stock market’s best dividend payers. AT&T is a true large-cap industry giant, with a market cap of $208 billion and the largest network of mobile and landline phone services in the US. Its acquisition of TimeWarner (now WarnerMedia), in a process running between 2016 and 2018, has given the company a large stake in the mobile content streaming business. AT&T saw revenues and earnings decline in 2020, under pressure from the corona pandemic – but the decline was modest, as that same pandemic also put a premium on telecom and networking systems, which tended to support AT&T’s business. Revenues in 3Q20 were $42.3 billion, 5% below the year-ago quarter. On positive notes, free cash flow rose yoy from $11.4 billion to $12.1 billion, and the company reported a net gain of 5.5 million new subscribers. The subscriber growth was driven by the new 5G network rollout – and by premium content services. The company held up its reputation as a dividend champ, and has made its most recent dividend declaration for payment in February 2021. The payment, at 52 per common share, is the fifth in a row at current level and annualizes to $2.08, giving a yield of 7.2%. For comparison, the average dividend among tech sector peer companies is only 0.9%. AT&T has kept its dividend strong for the past 12 years. Raymond James analyst Frank Louthan sees AT&T as a classic defensive value stock, and describes T’s current state as one with the bad news ‘baked in.’ “[We] believe there is more that can go right during the next 12 months than can get worse for AT&T. Throw in the fact that shares are heavily shorted, and we believe this is a recipe for upside. Large cap value names are hard to come by, and we think investors who can wait a few months for a mean reversion while locking in a 7% yield should be rewarded for buying AT&T at current levels,” Louthan opined. In line with these comments, Louthan rates T an Outperform (i.e. Buy), and his $32 price target implies room for 10% growth from current levels. (To watch Louthan’s track record, click here) What does the rest of the Street think? Looking at the consensus breakdown, opinions from other analysts are more spread out. 7 Buy ratings, 6 Holds and 2 Sells add up to a Moderate Buy consensus. In addition, the $31.54 average price target indicates ~9% upside potential. (See AT&T stock analysis on TipRanks) To find good ideas for dividend stocks trading at attractive valuations, visit TipRanks’ Best Stocks to Buy, a newly launched tool that unites all of TipRanks’ equity insights. Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this article are solely those of the featured analysts. The content is intended to be used for informational purposes only. It is very important to do your own analysis before making any investment.
Q.: To lessen the death tax on my estate, if I put my Roth IRA in an irrevocable trust now and after my spouse and I die four years later, do my children afterward have six years or 10 years to invest all the money before they must dispose of the Roth money from the trust under the new rules of the 2019 SECURE Act? A.: John, you cannot put a Roth IRA in a trust while you are alive. You can move the assets in the Roth IRA out of the Roth IRA and then put those assets into the trust but trusts can only own Roth IRAs as Inherited Roth IRAs.
Picking retirement stocks is never an easy task. Stocks historically generated long-term gains that are bigger than those of any other asset class. However, picking retirement stocks is easier said than done. You always have a new sector upending the markets. This past year we saw that with electric vehicle stocks. Along with risky SPAC plays, they went hyperbolic. And the momentum doesn’t seem to stop. However, retirees must figure out how to produce enough income without a job. They shouldn’t operate with the same mentality as swing traders, a trading style that attempts to capture short- to medium-term gains. Since 1926, large stocks delivered an average of 10% return per year. And at no point have they lost ground over any period of 20 years or longer during that time. But the key theme here is that you have to go long to maximize your gains. Something that retirees can do, so long as the income stream is stable. It also goes without saying that the best retirement stocks have excellent yields. A good track record of dividend payments is a strong sign of security and is very attractive to income-oriented customers. Most of the retirement stocks we discuss in this list are real estate investment trusts, or REITs. REITs own or finance income-producing real estate across a range of property sectors. The reason for their selection is REITs must distribute at least 90% of their taxable income to shareholders annually via dividends.InvestorPlace - Stock Market News, Stock Advice & Trading Tips 9 Stocks That Investors Think Are the Next Amazon Therefore, without further ado, let’s look at four of the best retirement stocks to start planning for your future: Healthcare Trust of America (NYSE:HTA) Extra Space Storage (NYSE:EXR) American Tower (NYSE:AMT) AT&T (NYSE:T) Retirement Stocks: Healthcare Trust of America (HTA) Source: Shutterstock Healthcare Trust of America is a safe way to play the medical sector. Investors are looking to fill up their portfolio with biotechs and pharmaceuticals in the hopes of striking gold. Whether or not any one of these picks manages to create a vaccine is irrelevant. Unless you diversify your portfolio with a host of names, you could get burned pretty badly. That’s where HTA stock comes in. It’s a REIT that invests in medical office buildings. Medical professionals will continue to use these buildings regardless of whether their work revolves around developing vaccines or not. Let’s face it. Like most advanced developed nations, America is aging. The baby boomer generation has the disposable income to spend on quality medical facilities, which will keep demand up for the 25 million square feet of office space that HTA has at its disposal. Granted, there was a decrease in funds from operations per share in the second quarter of 2020. But things are pretty much back to pre-pandemic levels as of Q3. HTA hiked its dividend, reported normalized FFO of $0.43 per diluted share – a record for HTA – and revenue, NOI, adjusted EBITDA growth across the board. From a dividend perspective, you can’t get any more rock-solid than this one. Due to the steady net operating income growth, the company has consistently increased its dividend, leading to a very healthy yield at the moment of 4.8%. Considering that it’s a REIT, expect money coming into your account on a very regular basis if you buy HTA stock. Just the kind of investment you need when you have your feet up and enjoying traveling the world or remodeling your home. Extra Space Storage (EXR) Source: Shutterstock Our next entry is one of the largest self-storage REITs in the U.S. and is a member of the S&P 500. It has a fairly diversified portfolio. With a dividend yield of 3.2%, it is an excellent pick for long-term growth and stable returns. Despite the novel coronavirus pandemic, EXR managed to increase core FFO/share by 5.6% year-over-year to $1.31 in Q3’20. The business model is recession-resistant, so I am not surprised by the performance. Same-store occupancy is an excellent 95.9%, 210 basis points higher than the year-ago figure. From a financial health perspective, everything looks OK. The self-storage REIT has a solid balance sheet, with a debt-to-EBITDA of 6.07 times. That is par for the course if we are talking REITs. Its interest coverage ratio is a solid 3.7 times, and sales growth is a solid 11.3% for the last five years. Because of the factors discussed, the payout is not in danger. By 2025, the self-storage market’s valuation is expected to grow to $115.62 billion from $87.65 billion in 2019. A compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 134.79% over the forecast period of 2020-2025. 9 Stocks That Investors Think Are the Next Amazon Ultimately, EXR stock should garner your attention because of its solid balance sheet, strong occupancy and FFO/share growth, and juicy dividend yield. Shares are not the most affordable at the moment, trading at 31 times forward price-to-earnings. However, these are retirement stocks we are talking about. At this price, you are buying into an industry that will only grow, guaranteeing sustained income for several years to come. Retirement Stocks: American Tower (AMT) Source: Pavel Kapysh / Shutterstock.com For the final REIT on our list, we have another solid performer. Only this time, it’s in the broadcast communications space. American Tower is one of the largest providers of wireless communications services. The growing demand for 5G wireless streaming capability is pushing revenue higher for the communications REIT. Even before the pandemic, the world was marching to 5G network technology. But the current crisis has only exacerbated the need for faster uptake. That provides a secular trend that AMT can exploit in the United States and foreign countries. Operations are spread across the U.S., Germany, Ghana, Nigeria, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Mexico, South Africa, Uganda, Brazil and Peru. So you get a lot of geographic diversification when you buy EXR stock, always a good thing when you don’t want to hedge your bets. The company recently reported AFFO earnings of $2.29, beating analyst expectations by 22 cents and growing 14.5% year-over-year. Total revenue was up 3% year-over-year and beat Wall Street analysts’ estimates by $40 million. AMT boosted its dividend 34 quarters in a row. The multitenant communications REIT has grown its dividend for the last nine consecutive years and is increasing its dividend by an average of 20.02% each year. American Tower pays 62.61% of its earnings as a dividend, but the yield of 2.3% is not in danger. The solid earnings and revenue growth allow the company to keep investing in the 5G expansion while maintaining healthy distributions. AT&T (T) Source: Roman Tiraspolsky / Shutterstock.com We finally have a non-REIT here. InvestorPlace readers know that I love T stock for a variety of reasons. The telecommunications giant has a solid business model and is all set to have a blockbuster 2021 due to HBO Max. There were certainly issues that the platform experienced at its launch. But these are resolved. Late last year, AT&T reached an agreement to bring the platform to Roku (NASDAQ:ROKU), finally bringing its content to one of the largest streaming services in the world. WarnerMedia announced that its entire movie slate for 2021 will release simultaneously in theaters and on HBO Max. The movies will stream on HBO Max for one month before leaving the platform for a period of time. According to AT&T CEO John Stankey, HBO Max, which closed the third quarter at 8.6 million active subscribers in the U.S., scored another 4 million to reach 12.6 million as of early December. Meanwhile, reports are also emerging that the company is in discussions with a group of banks to raise $14 billion to buy more 5G airwaves. The move is essential because control of 5G airwaves will decide which company will emerge as the leader in U.S. telecommunications. 9 Stocks That Investors Think Are the Next Amazon Now let’s talk about my favorite aspect of the company: its dividend yield of 7.2%. This compares very favorably with the industry yield of 3.5%. Only Vodafone (NASDAQ:VOD) comes close with a 6.2% yield among its peer group. AT&T increased its dividend distribution for 10 consecutive years. If you are looking for one of the best retirement stocks for your portfolio, look no further. On the date of publication, Faizan Farooque did not have (either directly or indirectly) any positions in the securities mentioned in this article. Faizan Farooque is a contributing author for InvestorPlace.com and numerous other financial sites. Faizan has several years of experience in analyzing the stock market and was a former data journalist at S&P Global Market Intelligence. His passion is to help the average investor make more informed decisions regarding their portfolio. More From InvestorPlace Why Everyone Is Investing in 5G All WRONG Top Stock Picker Reveals His Next 1,000% Winner It doesn’t matter if you have $500 in savings or $5 million. Do this now. The post 4 Perfect Stocks to Start Your Retirement Portfolio appeared first on InvestorPlace.
BlackBerry Limited (BB) is somewhat of an enigma in the investment world, full of great promise but at the same time, it has let shareholders down time and again. The company is armed with a huge patent portfolio, and offers several cutting-edge products in cybersecurity, Internet-of-Things (IoT), and automotive technology. What’s more, shares have surged 32% in the last two sessions after BlackBerry announced that it has sold 90 smartphone technology patents to Huawei, as part of its shift away from the mobile phone space. But while BlackBerry gushes with potential, it also disappoints quarter after quarter. In the most recent quarter, BlackBerry missed on revenue and GAAP EPS. Most concerning were the drop in revenue, down 20% year-over-year, and the sizeable increase in GAAP operating loss of $127 million, up from the $29 million loss one year ago. To be fair, some of the performance issues were pandemic-related, particularly with regards to the auto sector where plant shutdowns have translated to fewer automobile deliveries, and hence, lower QNX licensing fees. However, the company’s revenue has been shrinking for several years before the pandemic. The five-year growth rate for example is -20.8%. Company Transformation The story is not all bad. Glimmers of hope are emerging in what may yet shape up to be a multi-year turnaround story that started in 2013, the year that John Chen took the reigns of BlackBerry as CEO. At that time, BlackBerry was a $6 billion Titanic, immersed in red ink after hitting an iceberg called the Apple iPhone. After taking charge, John Chen proceeded to monetize the company’s patent portfolio, and transform the mobile phone manufacturer into a much more modest $1 billion software company. The transformation has taken place over several years, with half a dozen acquisitions along the way, including Cylance, Good, and AtHoc. These companies have been assimilated and worked into BlackBerry's product streams, but also have resulted in a significant write down of goodwill, including $500 million earlier in 2020. BlackBerry has at least stabilized its financial situation, and now has positive free cash flow and adjusted EBITDA. That said, the turmoil surrounding the company has affected its stock price and resulted in an attractive valuation. BlackBerry also boasts some promising technologies that could lead to strong revenue growth down the road. This may be a great time to invest in BlackBerry. Valuation Metrics BlackBerry’s low valuation should come as no surprise given its past troubles. The company has superior metrics versus the software industry on a number of fronts, summarized in the table below. MetricBlackBerryIndustryPrice/Sales Ratio5.8511.31Price/Book Ratio3.0711.44Gross Margin74.2%70.9%Operating Margin-9.2%-23.6%Current Ratio2.271.57Total Debt/Equity0.330.55 Metrics such as price/sales and price/book ratio suggest that BlackBerry is quite undervalued, with a strong likelihood that the stock will outperform once the company’s future potential is recognized by the market. It is not at all unreasonable to expect a 2x - 3x stock price increase from its current level. BlackBerry IVY BlackBerry’s recent announcement regarding its strategic alliance with Amazon Web Services (AWS) may be enough to kick-start the company’s stock price. The exclusive partnership provides instant credibility along with a ‘Big Data’ mindset to vehicle data, resulting in unlimited potential for third-party applications in areas such as car insurance, maintenance, EV charging, and connected vehicles. The AWS platform gives BlackBerry IVY cloud-connectivity, scalability, and a global reach. This initiative will provide BlackBerry with a new source of recurring revenue in the automotive market, where it already has software installed in over 175 million cars. Spark Suite Apart from BlackBerry IVY, there are several other promising technologies emerging from BlackBerry, including Spark Suite, which combines Endpoint Management with Endpoint Security, a logical step in the evolution of mobile devices. Spark Suite provides Zero Trust, an emerging concept in cybersecurity that is becoming a necessity for enterprises as mobile devices such as wearables become the norm within the workplace. In addition to IVY and Spark Suite, BlackBerry has several other more mature product offerings including QNX, BlackBerry AtHoc, and BlackBerry SecuSUITE. While not as exciting as BlackBerry's recent initiatives, they provide a steady and increasing revenue stream. Wall Street’s Take From Wall Street analysts, BlackBerry earns a Hold analyst consensus based on 3 Hold ratings. Additionally, the average price target of $8 puts the downside potential at 18.7%. (See BlackBerry stock analysis on TipRanks) Summary and Conclusions BlackBerry has had a turbulent past, downsizing from a $6 billion hardware company into a $1 billion software company over the last seven years. Revenue was down 20% year-over-year in the latest quarter, but much of the poor performance can be attributed to the soft auto sector resulting from the pandemic. QNX licensing fees and royalties will pick up as the global economy improves. Despite several years of disappointing results, the company has stabilized its financial situation and appears to be positioned to capitalize on several leading-edge technology ventures, including its exclusive partnership with AWS and enterprise mobility management and security. Given the very low valuation, this could be an ideal time to invest in BlackBerry. Disclaimer: The information contained herein is for informational purposes only. Nothing in this article should be taken as a solicitation to purchase or sell securities.
* Benzinga has examined the prospects for many investor favorite stocks over the past week. * The week's bullish calls included the electric vehicle leader and a recovering retailer. * A ride-sharing company and a semiconductor maker were among the bearish calls.As the fourth-quarter earnings reporting season got underway last week, the major U.S. indexes lost a little ground. The Dow Jones industrial average concluded the week down about 1%, and the S&P 500 and Nasdaq retreated a little more.Of course, much of the attention during the week was focused on the political drama in Washington, D.C. The U.S. president became the first ever to be impeached twice, after the prior week's chaos at the U.S. Capitol. Social media pulled the plug on the president and others who fomented the insurrection. The outgoing president also kept up the pressure on China, while the incoming president laid out a huge pandemic and economic recovery program.In corporate news, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission opened a probe into a petroleum giant, a semiconductor leader announced management changes, a casino owner and Republican megadonor passed away, and the Detroit Auto Show was canceled.Through it all, Benzinga continued to examine the prospects for many of the stocks most popular with investors. Here are a few of this past week's most bullish and bearish posts that are worth another look.Bulls Tesla Inc (NASDAQ: TSLA) is not an auto company but rather a disruptive technology company. So says Shivdeep Dhaliwal's "Tesla Reaching T Valuation In 2 Years? Here's What Inspires Daniel Ives' Optimistic Target." Are U.S. political developments bullish for the Elon Musk-led company?Priya Nigam's "Marathon Oil Gets Upgrade Due To Higher Oil Prices, More Cash Return To Shareholders" is focused on how Marathon Oil Corporation (NYSE: MRO) is likely to generate around $2 billion over the next couple of years.In Jayson Derrick's "Baird Upgrades Walgreens Boots, Expects Turnaround Of 'Train Wreck' Performance," see the several catalysts that could help turn around specialty retailer Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc (NASDAQ: WBA)."Nvidia's Comprehensive Involvement In Gaming Market Continues Strong Demand: Rosenblatt" by Shanthi Rexaline examines how the competitive position of NVIDIA Corporation (NASDAQ: NVDA) in the gaming GPU market will only get better.In "Cantor Analyst Raises Aphria And Tilray Price Targets Amid Merger," Jelena Martinovic discusses why the impending merger with Tilray Inc. (NASDAQ: TLRY) has overshadowed the recent disappointing quarterly results from Aphria Inc. (NASDAQ: APHA).For additional bullish calls of the past week, also have a look at the following: * Study: Investors Say Tesla, Apple And Microsoft Were 2020's Top Stocks * Why KeyBanc Is Bullish On These 4 Casino StocksBears A Japanese tech investment giant has trimmed its stake in Uber Technologies Inc (NYSE: UBER), according to "SoftBank Dumps B Worth Of Uber Shares After Stock's Rally" by Aditya Raghunath. See how much of the stake in the ride-sharing company remains and whether it is still the largest investment in the firm's portfolio.Shanthi Rexaline's "Why Intel's CEO Transition Is A Negative For AMD: Analyst" argues that the "blue sky" scenario for Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. (NASDAQ: AMD) may start to crumble as its rival gets back on its feet. How much are AMD's share gains in servers likely to moderate?In Chris Katje's "Palantir Vulnerable With Valuation And Lockup Concerns, Citi Says," see whether shares of software company Palantir Technologies Inc (NYSE: PLTR) have run too far. Plus, a large share lockup expires around the same time as the upcoming earnings report."JPMorgan Says Hydrogen Stock Plug Power Trades At 'Steep Price,' Downgrades FuelCell Energy" by Jayson Derrick shows why the "compelling" path to $1.2 billion in sales by 2024 for Plug Power Inc (NASDAQ: PLUG) did not impress one top analyst.For more bearish takes, be sure to check out these posts: * Why Investment Strategist Ed Yardeni Is Worried About A Tech Stocks, Bitcoin-Led Market Meltdown * 'You're A Fool' Who Will 'Lose Everything' If You Take On Debt To Invest In Crypto, Mark Cuban Says * How Did Retail Perform During The Holidays?At the time of this writing, the author had no position in the mentioned equities.Photo Courtesy of PixabayKeep up with all the latest breaking news and trading ideas by following Benzinga on Twitter.See more from Benzinga * Click here for options trades from Benzinga * Barron's Picks And Pans: Dividend Aristocrats, Alibaba, GameStop, Walmart And More * Notable Insider Buys Of The Past Week: Howard Hughes, Party City, Perrigo And More(C) 2021 Benzinga.com. Benzinga does not provide investment advice. All rights reserved.
Andrew LeftCitron Research's Andrew Left criticized insurance company Lemonade Inc (NYSE: LMND) on Friday, saying its stock multiple is based on empty marketing tactics.The Lemonade Bear Case: In a Twitter live video, Left dismissed Lemonade Inc's claims of bringing new technology to the insurance industry, saying the company's technology is no different from insurers like Progressive Corp. (NYSE: PGR) or State Farm."They've been lying to their customers and their shareholders," said the noted short seller.The company has not responded to a request for comment.Not An ESG Company: He also blasted Lemonade's claims of being a "social good" company as an easy marketing ploy.Left said Lemonade is taking advantage of younger investors' interest in supporting companies that have a positive social impact, like Tesla Inc (NASDAQ: TSLA)."It's playing on the millennial investors," he said, adding that the company has a higher multiple than Zoom Video Communications (NASDAQ: ZM), Uber Technologies Inc (NYSE: UBER) or Tesla Inc (NASDAQ: TSLA).Lemonade insiders have sold $400 million in the past six months but gave just $1 million to charity last year, he said.Left said the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Federal Trade Commission should look more closely at companies that make claims of being socially responsible.Price Action: Shares of Lemonade ended Friday's trading down 6.79% at $147.74 on Friday. Left's video posted to Twitter at 11:30 a.m.Related Link: XL Fleet Spikes On CEO's CNBC Plug, Citron's Long CallSee more from Benzinga * Click here for options trades from Benzinga * Hillman Group In Talks With Tilman Fertitta SPAC: Bloomberg * 6 Sports SPACs To Consider For Your Investing Playbook(C) 2021 Benzinga.com. Benzinga does not provide investment advice. All rights reserved.
Some left-for-dead penny stocks are now billion-dollar companies, thanks to the rally in the S&P 500 and other indexes.
Last year was a tale of two halves for dividend equities. Owing to the novel coronavirus pandemic, the first half of 2020 was chock full of payout cuts and suspensions by S&P 500 member firms, but dividends rebounded mightily in the second half of the year, indicating that many of the top stocks for 2021 are dividend payers. The fourth-quarter trajectory of S&P 500 payouts indicates that the darkest clouds of the coronavirus cuts have passed. And dividend investors could be in for better things this year. “Indicated dividend net changes (increases less decreases) for U.S. domestic common stocks increased $9.5 billion during Q4 2020, compared to a decline of $2.3 billion in Q3 2020, and a gain of $10.6 billion in Q4 2019,” noted the S&P Dow Jones Indices. “For Q4 2020, aggregate increases amounted to $13.9 billion, up 64.2% from the $8.4 billion increase of Q3 2020 and up 15.7%, from Q4 2019’s $12.0 billion. Aggregate dividend cuts decreased 59.8% to $4.3 billion from Q3 2020’s $10.8 billion in cuts, and was up 221% from the $1.3 billion in cuts for Q4 2019.”InvestorPlace - Stock Market News, Stock Advice & Trading Tips Adding to the case for dividends in 2021 are recent dividend futures data, which, as Goldman Sachs notes, implies those contracts could bring cuts. But the bank says that’s a case of mispricing and that dividends should rise this year. 9 Stocks That Investors Think Are the Next Amazon With that opportunity ahead, here are some of the top dividend stocks to consider for 2021: Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) JPMorgan Chase (NYSE:JPM) Western Union (NYSE:WU) Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) VICI Properties (NYSE:VICI) Equinix (NASDAQ:EQIX) Texas Instruments (NASDAQ:TXN) Dividend Stocks: Apple (AAPL) Source: View Apart / Shutterstock.com Apple’s dividend yields just 0.64%. In this environment of historically low interest rates and depressed yields, the company doesn’t standout on the basis of yield. However, it is one of the rare examples of a name that’s legitimately a growth stock with a solidified, growing dividend. In bygone eras of investing, technology companies didn’t rush to pay dividends because it was supposedly a sign that growth was behind them. That’s not the case with Apple. A relatively new participant in the dividend landscape, AAPL stock has consistently surged since it became a dividend payer less than a decade ago. As of Jan. 15, the company has a market capitalization of $2.15 trillion. The combination of 5G iPhone sales, a bigger push into high margins, revenue-steadying subscription-based services and its robust entertainment arm make Apple a top stock for 2021. For its most recent quarter, the company had $191.83 billion in cash on hand — more than enough to support and grow the dividend this year. JPMorgan Chase (JPM) Source: Roman Tiraspolsky / Shutterstock.com For a good portion of 2020, allocating to bank stocks, including JPMorgan Chase, tried investors’ patience. The group fell out of favor because of low interest rates, but that wasn’t all. Shareholder rewards (the one benefit of being involved with these names) suffered a blow when the Federal Reserve told the largest banks to scrap buybacks and that there would be no payout growth in 2020. Rather, JPMorgan had to set aside large sums of capital to cover bad loans due to the fragile Covid-19 economy. On that note, the sour loan situation didn’t turn out to be as bad as the Fed expected. That could mean at some point in 2021, JPMorgan and rivals will be allowed to repatriate that cash back into earnings. 7 Dividend Stocks That Are Growing Their Payouts There are reasons for optimism when it comes to the JPM stock dividend, including the Fed relenting on the buyback freeze last month. JPMorgan seized on that announcement, swiftly saying it will repurchase $30 billion of its shares. Western Union (WU) Source: apichon_tee/ShutterStock.com Dividend stocks are often associated with large- and mega-cap companies, but some smaller stocks have enviable payout track records. That group includes money-transfer provider Western Union. The company has a $8.95 billion market cap and yields 4.16%. This results in an annual payout of 90 cents per share, up from 24 cents a decade ago. WU stock was a sluggish performer last year, and its prosaic business doesn’t seem to jive with the current level of sexiness ascribed to the fintech revolution. But Western Union has digital capabilities of its own that could act as catalysts for the sleepy stock this year. “Expanding real-time payout capability is a key focus of the Company’s digital growth strategy which centers on growing its industry-leading digital services offered through westernunion.com and digital partnerships,” according to the company. “Together, the two growth drivers grew digital revenue 45% year-over-year in the third quarter of 2020, representing 21% of Western Union’s consumer business and trending at an annual rate of over $900 million.” Microsoft (MSFT) Source: The Art of Pics / Shutterstock.com Microsoft’s dividend history is longer than Apple’s. But they are both prime examples of growth companies that offer much more than just a dividend. Rather, they are growth names with the ability to support and grow the payout while delivering impressive levels of capital appreciation. While so many energy, consumer discretionary and real estate companies — just to name a few sectors — were cutting and halting dividends in 2020, Microsoft grew its payout. Last September, the tech giant raised its quarterly payout to 56 cents a share, a 10% increase. The company finished 2020 with $136.52 billion in cash on hand, so future dividend growth is easily supported. The Top 7 Marijuana Stocks to Buy for January Of course, Wall Street demands more of MSFT stock than dividend growth. And investors should, too. Fortunately, the company can execute. In the September quarter, Microsoft’s Azure cloud business, the second-largest of its kind, grew 48%. While the PC market could ebb a bit this year, Office 365, particularly the version including Teams, adds another growth driver for the company. VICI Properties (VICI) Source: Shutterstock Real estate investment trusts (REITs) were among the most egregious offenders when it came to dividend cuts in 2020. But VICI Properties didn’t get that memo, raising its payout 11% for its third consecutive hike. VICI is a gaming REIT, meaning it’s in the casino real estate business. To that end, it’s worth noting the company is the property owner of Caesars Palace on the Las Vegas strip, among dozens of other domestic gaming venues. However, investors should also note that Caesars Entertainment (NASDAQ:CZR) is the REIT’s biggest client, and Caesars has a deep portfolio of regional casinos. Translation: VICI is significantly less Vegas-dependent than meets the eye. In fact, just about a quarter of its rental income was generated on the strip in the September quarter. VICI has some growth levers to pull as 2021 unfolds. Caesars is likely to divest several properties around the country to generate cash. VICI is the likely suitor for some of those venues, as it holds rights of first refusal for some assets on the strip. Additionally, VICI has served as partner for smaller casino operators looking to scoop regional venues, which leads to new rental income. Equinix (EQIX) Source: Ken Wolter / Shutterstock.com With a current price around $700, data-center REIT Equinix isn’t for everyone. EQIX is in the midst of a pullback that’s seen it retreat 17% from its 52-week high. But that could be a buying opportunity for investors. Data centers house servers and networking gear. And with cybersecurity and cloud-computing spending forecast to surge again this year, the case for EQIX stock remains strong. Plus, Equinix has recent history on its side, easily topping broader real estate benchmarks for five years. There are plenty of avenues for growth in 2021. 7 Hot Stocks That Will Keep You Energized With 3%-Plus Yields “Interconnection remains strong and, in our view, will continue to be the primary driver of Equinix’s continuing strength. The firm added eight new cloud on-ramps in the quarter, bringing its total to 160 and, resulting in a 42% market share in its footprint according to the company,” according to Morningstar. Texas Instruments (TXN) Source: Katherine Welles / Shutterstock.com Semiconductor maker Texas Instruments is one of the original tech dividend names, initiating its payout in 1962. That’s ancient in tech dividend terms. More importantly, the payout grew at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 27% from 2004 to 2019. 2020 marked the 17th consecutive year in which the payout grew. Like many of its tech dividend counterparts, Texas Instruments has growth outlets despite being a mature company. Its battery management system (BMS) makes it a credible electric vehicle (EV) derivative play. The BMS is used by EV manufacturers to “reduce the complexity of their designs, improve reliability and reduce vehicle weight to extend driving range.” Design and extended range are two of the big hurdles that, if cleared, could rapidly speed EV adoption. There are more glamorous semiconductor stocks, but TXN is a way for conservative investors to get some EV exposure while getting compensated. That’s no small feat given the scarcity of dependable dividends in the EV arena. On the date of publication, Todd Shriber did not have (either directly or indirectly) any positions in any of the securities mentioned in this article. Todd Shriber has been an InvestorPlace contributor since 2014. More From InvestorPlace Why Everyone Is Investing in 5G All WRONG Top Stock Picker Reveals His Next 1,000% Winner It doesn’t matter if you have $500 in savings or $5 million. Do this now. The post The 7 Top Dividend Stocks for 2021 appeared first on InvestorPlace.
One of the major investing themes coming out of 2020 is the soaring price of bitcoin (CCC:BTC). However, the cryptocurrency slid as much as 21% over a two-day period to as low as $32,389. Since the start of the novel coronavirus pandemic, it’s the biggest two-day drop, wiping off nearly $140 billion in total market capitalization. Source: Shutterstock In a nutshell, investors reacted to the stronger dollar and growing political uncertainty. The cryptocurrency is still up roughly 89% on a trailing one-month basis. Nevertheless, the drop did send shivers down the spines of investors. Peaks and valleys will always be part and parcel of investing in bitcoin. But I believe this is just a momentary blip, and normal service will resume soon enough. Covid-19 is surging once again in Asia, and the impeachment of President Donald Trump is jolting the markets. The strengthening of the dollar and higher bond yields are also an important contributing factor in the fall in bitcoin prices.InvestorPlace - Stock Market News, Stock Advice & Trading Tips However, all these factors are temporary in nature. In the long run, bitcoin will continue to climb higher. Financial institutions are increasingly allowing users to buy, store, and sell cryptocurrencies. That’s why in a recent Bloomberg Crypto monthly report, analysts are predicting that bitcoin could more than double from its current value in 2021. Bitcoin Finally Gaining Widespread Acceptance The recent surge in bitcoin prices is due to multiple factors. A weaker dollar, economic optimism, big-ticket investment banks backing the scarce digital currency against inflation, and a weakening U.S. dollar are some reasons. However, I believe the biggest contributor is higher institutional interest. 9 Stocks That Investors Think Are the Next Amazon Square (NYSE:SQ), Paypal (NASDAQ:PYPL), Nvidia (NASDAQ:NVDA), and CME Group (NASDAQ:CME) all provide exposure to the cryptocurrency to their users. All of these companies are large diversified conglomerates. Therefore it’s hard to pinpoint how much money these companies are making through bitcoin. However, considering the surge in its price, it will be a significant contributor to the bottom line looking ahead. Just as an example, Square’s Cash App generated $1.63 billion of bitcoin revenue and $32 million of bitcoin gross profit during the third quarter of 2020. This was up approximately 11x and 15x year-over-year, respectively. Pantera Capital research shows PayPal and Square are securing all the new bitcoin added to the market daily. That’s great news, particularly for PayPal users. The online payments system provider allows its customers to buy, hold and sell cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin and ethereum for as little as $1. Similarly, a range of mid- or high-end graphics cards from Advanced Micro Devices (NASDAQ:AMD) is selling out, leading to a shortage in the markets. It’s mainly due to cryptocurrency miners purchasing them in bulk to build machines to mine bitcoin and similar cryptocurrencies. CME Group, which is the biggest largest financial derivatives exchange, also offers bitcoin futures contracts. Up until Dec 16, 2020, 8,560 CME Bitcoin futures contracts – equal to roughly 42,800 bitcoin – traded on average each day. Simultaneously, the institutional interest keeps increasing. The number of large open interest holders reached a record of 110 in December. Here to Stay We have been here before. Dizzying highs and lows are not a new phenomenon for bitcoin. However, the cryptocurrency is now finally gaining institutional support, which eluded it for a long time. The pandemic certainly helped. During the widespread lockdowns, online commerce and payments ballooned, increasing interest in digital currencies exponentially. Bitcoin was always volatile. But the past year has shown that every asset class can become wobbly in an uncertain environment. It was always regarded as an interesting store of value due to the ultimate ceiling of 21 million and the difficulties in mining it. But its wider acceptance is bringing a sense of credibility and stability that was hitherto missing. For me, that is what makes it an interesting asset to hold, despite the risks that come with it. The prospect of central banks issuing their own digital currencies will always be there. However, now that financial institutions as large as BlackRock (NYSE:BLK) are warming up to it, the future looks very bright for bitcoin. On the date of publication, Faizan Farooque did not have (either directly or indirectly) any positions in the securities mentioned in this article. Faizan Farooque is a contributing author for InvestorPlace.com and numerous other financial sites. Faizan has several years of experience analyzing the stock market and was a former data journalist at S&P Global Market Intelligence. His passion is to help the average investor make more informed decisions regarding their portfolio. More From InvestorPlace Why Everyone Is Investing in 5G All WRONG Top Stock Picker Reveals His Next 1,000% Winner It doesn’t matter if you have $500 in savings or $5 million. Do this now. The post Bitcoin Crash Is Excellent Opportunity to Buy the Dip appeared first on InvestorPlace.