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Top Casino Stocks For 2019

Oil prices have been blistering hot so far in 2018. A barrel of WTI, which is the U.S. oil price benchmark, has rocketed 23% in the first half to more than $74, its highest level since November 2014. Meanwhile, Brent, the global oil benchmark, has been almost as hot, rising 18.8% for the year to more than $79 per barrel.

Those surging crude prices fueled big gains for the stocks of oil producers, with the following five components of the S&P 500 leading the way:

Top Casino Stocks For 2019: Fossil Inc.(FOSL)

The S&P’s single best performer is a stock that many investors had left for dead before the start of the year. In fact, Fossil (NASDAQ:FOSL) shed 70% of its value in 2017 as demand for wearable tech disrupted its core watch business. The stock has rebounded lately thanks mainly to surprising strength in its new wearables segment. However, for shares to continue their growth, Fossil will need show that it can return to steady sales and profit gains. That isn’t likely this year, given that management is projecting revenue declines of between 14% and 6% in 2018, compared to an 8% drop last year.

These market-thumping gains raise the pressure on each of the companies to show strengthening results in the quarters ahead. The shifting investor opinions on their businesses, meanwhile, are likely to drive future volatility — one way or the other — in their stocks.

Top Casino Stocks For 2019: Anadarko Petroleum Corporation(APC)

Anadarko Petroleum is also sending more money back to shareholders thanks to higher oil prices. After initially authorizing a $2.5 billion repurchase program last fall (enough to retire 10% of its outstanding shares), the oil giant added $500 million to its buyback this year and is expected to spend the entire amount by the end of the second quarter. On top of that, Anadarko announced a fivefold increase in its dividend and committed to repaying another $1 billion in debt by the end of next year. With oil running well above Anadarko’s $50-a-barrel budget level, the company should generate even more excess cash that it could send back to shareholders.

Top Casino Stocks For 2019: Mastercard Incorporated(MA)

There are several ways to find a growth stock, but one of my personal favorites that I believe has a high success rate is investing in well-established companies that are poised to ride the next megatrend. Think digitization, and payment processing companies like Mastercard.

You’d be surprised to know that nearly 80% of consumer purchase transactions across the globe are still made in cash, and that includes rapidly growing economies like India. Incidentally, India is also among the fastest-growing e-commerce markets in the world, which means there’s tremendous underlying potential for a company like Mastercard. And it’s not just about India or e-commerce — it’s about improving financial literacy, greater financial inclusion and the shift of the unbanked population to banks, and the rising adoption of cashless methods of payments like credit cards across nations.

Mastercard is already a global brand that’s been connecting financial institutions, merchants, and consumers for more than five decades and facilitating electronic modes of payments. Over the years, the company has expanded its reach to more than 210 countries and conducts transactions in more than 150 currencies.

Mastercard stock has grown exponentially over the years, backed by solid growth in earnings, cash flows, and 50%-plus operating margins. With management now focused on advanced technologies like biometrics and artificial intelligence to keep up with the times even as the global shift from cash to cashless gathers steam, Mastercard should continue to see investors succeeding in the game.

Best Small Cap Stocks To Invest In 2019

Do you think penny stocks are best left to amateur traders who don’t understand that cheap stocks are cheap for a reason? It’s not an entirely unfair assessment. Many of these young (and doomed companies) are the beneficiaries of great sales pitches, but their investors often end up suffering buyer’s remorse.

It’s a misnomer, however, to think all penny stocks — let’s quantify them as equities priced at less than $5 per share — aren’t worth owning. Thanks to factors ranging from prolonged weakness in the commodities market to strategic stock splits to poorly-timed IPOs, a handful of these low-priced equities are actually compelling prospects.

In fact, here’s a run-down of four of the best penny stocks to mull for 2018, and maybe beyond, none of which aren’t exchange-listed names.

Best Small Cap Stocks To Invest In 2019: Lockheed Martin Corporation(LMT)

The most important key to identifying great dividend stocks is finding companies that fall into the six "Unstoppable Trends."

The trick to making huge profits is to find "must-have" companies that fall into what Keith calls the six "Unstoppable Trends": medicine, technology, demographics, scarcity and allocation, energy, and war, terrorism, and ugliness (also known as "defense"). The Unstoppable Trends are backed by trillions of dollars that Washington cannot derail, the Fed cannot meddle with, and Wall Street cannot hijack.

Lockheed Martin Corp. (NYSE: LMT), one of the world’s largest and most profitable defense contractors, is a solid "defense" trend company and one of our favorite dividend stocks.

The company has an annual revenue of $47.2 billion and a profit margin of 10.37%, which means the company is raking in a profit of almost $5 billion a year. And last year, Lockheed increased its profit projection by another 5%.

These numbers allow LMT to pay out a hefty dividend of $2.00 a share. That’s $2 per share every quarter for just owning the stock.

And that’s before the significant growth of LMT’s market value…

Analysts are projecting that LMT will jump to $457 a share. With a current market price of $352, that’s almost a 30% gain in just 12 months.

Best Small Cap Stocks To Invest In 2019: American Water Works(AWK)

For the same reason consumers can’t turn off their electricity, they can’t turn off their water no matter how unaffordable it feels. That’s good news for American Water Works Company Inc(NYSE:AWK), which operates water utility services in sixteen different states.

Calling a spade a spade, water utilities are a legalized monopoly … even more so than electric utilities or natural gas utilities are. Although all markets are theoretically open to competition, in reality the barriers to entry in the water delivery market are enormously high. That’s how water prices for consumers have steadily risen for the past ten years even though consumption has fallen.

These companies generally get whatever price increase they want, as local regulators are generally terrified to put up a fight that could prove disruptive. (Try going without clean, potable water for just one day.)

American Water Works Company shareholders aren’t complaining, of course. The stock has more than doubled over the course of the past five years, and that’s not counting the dividends it has paid along the way.

Best Small Cap Stocks To Invest In 2019: Mastercard Incorporated(MA)

Mastercard Stock

Source: Håkan Dahlström via Flickr (Modified)

 

 

Last, but by no means least, we have online payments giant MasterCard Inc (NYSE:MA). Can this company do no wrong?! Our data shows that MasterCard has 100% support from the Street right now. In the last three months, this breaks down into 11 back-to-back buy ratings. These analysts have an average MasterCard price target of $204 (8% upside potential). Mastercard is the “most innovative and competitively advantaged payments ecosystem participant” with an “impressive” core business trend, writes SunTrust’s Andrew Jeffrey.

Right now analysts are digesting the latest set of positive earnings results. “We like Mastercard’s ability to grow faster than peers and its potential to expand margins. Results for 1Q18 were above expectations, with solid growth across all segments,” cheers Cantor Fitzgerald’s Joseph Foresi. MA reported solid growth across all segments with gross dollar volume growth of 19% year-over-year. For comparison, rival Visa reported 15% y-o-y dollar growth. On the back of these results, MA increased its 2018 revenue guidance range to high-teens from the mid-teens.

This isn’t some kind flash-in-the-pan success either. Foresi states that: “We remain attracted to Mastercard’s card network and strong products and solutions, which should continue to drive solid performance.” Accordingly he boosts his price target from $198 to $213 (13% upside potential).

Top 10 Low Price Stocks For 2019

If you’re able to buy shares of a small growth stock — say, a company with a market capitalizationof less than $20 billion — before the rest of the market catches on to the story, it can be a life-changing investment. 

Consider, for instance, the 1997 investment that Motley Fool co-founder David Gardner made in — at the time — a tiny company called Amazon. With a split-adjusted purchase price of just $3.19, a simple $10,000 investment back then is now worth $4.5 million.

But what is a growth stock? There’s no hard-and-fast definition. Perhaps it’s best to define this type of investing in the context of a few other types of investing.

  • Growth stocks: Stocks you buy because you believe the stock’s price could increase substantially — usually an uncapped amount with enormous upside potential. Revenue often increases dramatically. This tends to be a high-risk/high-reward type of investing. 
  • Income stocks: Stocks you buy because you want to receive regular dividends. Revenue growth need not be much higher than inflation. These companies tend to be larger and more stable and offer a lower-risk/lower-reward profile.
  • Value stocks: Stocks you buy because — like growth stocks — you believe the stock’s price will go up. Unlike growth stocks, however, this is because you believe the stock to be currently undervalued.

There’s no way to know if the five growth stocks I’m introducing today will have Amazon-like returns. However, they all share a few key traits I consider to be important for growth investors:

  • A market capitalization of less than $20 billion.
  • Revenue growth of at least 20% over the past three years.
  • An "antifragile" balance sheet that will allow it to grow stronger in the face of economic crises.
  • Founder-led companies where insiders own lots of stock
  • An identifiable moat protecting the company from its competition.

We’ll cover each of those below for these growth stocks.

Top 10 Low Price Stocks For 2019: Mastercard Incorporated(MA)

Let’s do a double for this one: Visa Inc (NYSE:V) and Mastercard Inc (NYSE:MA). Both companies are huge beneficiaries of the same trend, as global consumers continue moving to credit and debit from cash and check. Further, growing e-commerce sales bode well for V and MA too, for obvious reasons.

The credit card business is attractive for many reasons, as V and MA serve as simple “toll booth” businesses. They don’t lend consumers money and they don’t take on big risks. Instead, when a consumer purchases goods or services from a merchant and pays via credit card, the merchant pays a fee that goes to V and MA.

While the pair of stocks may look expensive on a sales basis at first glance, the earnings-based valuation isn’t all that bad. Especially considering their double-digit earnings and revenue growth.

Throw in the fact that Visa has profit margins of almost 40% while MA has margins of 32% and we can see that these two are earning money hand over fist.

Both stocks tend to trade with a high correlation. They’ve been in a steady uptrend since early 2017 and I hate that I’ve taken some off the table since I first initiated a position almost six years ago.

As V and MA both bump up against resistance, they look like they’ll soon push through to new highs, short of another market-wide selloff.

Top 10 Low Price Stocks For 2019: HIVE Blockchain Technologies Ltd.(HVBTF)

Now, if you want as much cryptocurrency mining exposure as possible without actually running your own mining operation, there’s the over-the-counter exchange-listed HIVE Blockchain Technologies (NASDAQOTH:HVBTF). This publicly traded cryptocurrency mining firm is currently in the process of ramping up its operations in Sweden and Iceland, and envisions generating approximately $150 million in annual revenue from its operations. Sweden and Iceland offer commercial kilowatt-per-hour electricity prices that are well below the European average. Plus, these are relatively temperate nation’s, which may aid in keeping mining equipment cool.

Now here’s where things really get interesting. Despite being a crypto mining start-up, HIVE Blockchain already turned a profit in its most recently reported quarter. Sure, the $149,724 in profit was negligible and resulted in $0.00 in earnings per share, but that profit was derived from just over $3 million in quarterly sales. Presumably, HIVE could generate more than 10 times this each quarter when fully ramped up.

The wildcard here is what’ll happen to cryptocurrency prices. You see, HIVE Blockchain isn’t necessarily selling all of the Ethereum, Ethereum Classic, and ZCash tokens that it’s mining. It hangs on to some of these coins in the hope that they’ll appreciate in value. Thus, investing in a company like HIVE gives an investor direct access to crypto mining margins, as well as the movement in a handful of popular digital currencies. 

Like the other companies above, there are also plenty of risks. Given that its business is entirely devoted to crypto mining and lacks sales diversity, investors would need to understand that if virtual currency prices fall considerably, their investment in HIVE could dive. Furthermore, in order to raise capital, it wouldn’t be surprising if HIVE Blockchain diluted existing investors with bought-deal offerings. These are the risks that stock investors would have to endure if they wanted direct access to a publicly traded cryptocurrency mining stock.

Top 10 Low Price Stocks For 2019: Baidu Inc.(BIDU)

Chinese internet powerhouse also cruised past earnings estimates recently, reporting adjusted earnings per share of $2.60 that comfortably outpaced our consensus estimate of $1.73. The company saw revenue figures of $3.33 billion, also topping our consensus estimate of $3.26 billion. Total revenue was up 31% from the prior-year quarter.

Baidu also posted strong guidance. For the second quarter of 2018, Baidu expects revenues to be between $3.97 billion and $4.17 billion. Before the report, our latest consensus estimate was calling for revenue of $3.91 billion.

Top 10 Low Price Stocks For 2019: China Life Insurance Company Limited(LFC)

China Life Insurance is the leading life insurance company in China. Analyst outlook for the company is improving, with our consensus projection for its full-year 2018 earnings improving by three cents over the past two months—earning the stock a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy). LFC is now expected to witness EPS growth of 14% this year. The stock is also trading with an “A” grade for Value, underscored by its attractive P/E of 13.3 and better-than-industry-average PEG of 0.5. Investors are getting a great price for the company’s earnings outlook and growth.

Top 10 Low Price Stocks For 2019: Cannabis Science, Inc. (CBIS)

As I’m sure you’re all aware, the cannabis industry receives a bad rap from society at large. Countless movies, music videos, and television shows celebrate the idea of getting completely baked. It’s easy to forget the fundamental reason why marijuana is so popular — its medicinal properties, of course!

Okay, maybe that’s a little bit of a stretch, but nevertheless, cannabis does have promising therapeutic and medicinal potential. Cannabis Science Inc (OTCMKTS:CBIS) is one of the few names among marijuana penny stocks that’s completely devoted to medicinal marijuana. According to their profile, CBIS is actively seeking “to treat the world’s most deadly illnesses,” including cancer. In the future, CBIS aims to help patients with increasingly common conditions, such as attention deficit disorder, and post-traumatic stress.

With recent clinical studies demonstrating marijuana’s potential, Cannabis Science also enjoys the possibility of a strong move in the markets. That being said, the company’s financials are very similar to a speculative biotech firm. I don’t necessarily mean this in a good way: CBIS stock will be feast or famine.

So far, long-term shareholders have been going without. CBIS is down more than 33% YTD, which is typical for marijuana stocks in its class. Still, with a small investment, Cannabis Science can pay off bigly!

Hot Bank Stocks To Buy For 2019

For a company to be considered a "growth stock," the only real criteria is that you are buying it because you believe in the unbridled potential for the stock’s price to go up over time.

That being said, I personally believe adding some specific criteria can help to increase the probability of finding a stock with Amazon-esque return potential. By buying companies with market capitalizations under $20 billion, there’s more room for the stocks to grow over time. And by buying companies that have shown strong revenue growth — an average of over 20% over the past three years — that makes it likely these companies are offering what consumers want more and more of.

Hot Bank Stocks To Buy For 2019: Euro FX(P)

The first stock on this list may come as a complete surprise considering its core business is still in free-fall, but streaming music company Pandora Media Inc (NYSE:P) is actually a cheap stock on the rise.

The company started to turn around its business by finally pivoting away from its core ad-supported streaming music platform. Pandora just acquired digital-audio tech firm AdsWizz, and in doing so, potentially changed the entire company’s growth narrative from dying streaming music platform to growing audio-streaming advertising marketplace.

AdsWizz is a firm that specializes exclusively in digital audio advertising. Based on management commentary, it seem like Pandora is planning on using AdsWizz to create a centralized digital audio advertisement marketplace. This could have potentially huge effects, seeing as the digital audio advertising market is expected to grow by a ton over the next several years as radio ads shift to the digital format.

In other words, the whole idea is that the AdsWizz acquisition accelerates Pandora’s ad-tech roadmap, thrusts the company more deeply into the secular growth audio advertising market, ditches the company’s reliance on its struggling streaming music platform, and opens up new revenue opportunities.

That is a solid formation for a bull thesis on Pandora stock.

Meanwhile, the company just reported first quarter numbers, and they were much better than expected. While the core ad-supported streaming music platform continues to dwindle in popularity, the subscription business is actually growing nicely, and that fits in well with this company’s big turnaround story.

Pandora stock used to be north of $30. Today, it is still only $7. Therefore, if this turnaround plays out to completion, Pandora stock could still head markedly higher.

Hot Bank Stocks To Buy For 2019: Moelis & Company(MC)

In the wake of the financial crisis, with so many investment banks tarnished (or in some cases gone), there was an opportunity for an independent company to step up. That’s exactly what Moelis & Co (NYSE:MC) has done — and so far it’s been a raging success.

A company founded in 2007 now is worth over $3 billion. MC stock has risen 132% from its 2014 IPO price of $25. Moelis even was named an adviser to the Saudi Aramco IPO, potentially the largest ever.

Fundamentally, Moelis just keeps chugging along. Adjusted EPS rose 56% in Q1 on the back of a 27% jump in revenue. The company continues to add new directors and partners, while expanding its geographic reach. Without the other divisions — and potential conflicts of interest — seen at larger rivals like Goldman Sachs Group Inc (NYSE:GS) and Morgan Stanley(NYSE:MS), Moelis continues to win more than its fair share of deals.

Meanwhile, a recently raised dividend yields 3.2%, and the company holds no debt. A 19x forward P/E multiple might be considered a bit pricey — particularly because Moelis has a good deal of cyclical risk. Any slowdown in M&A, in particular, could send its revenue and earnings falling.

Still, from a qualitative standpoint, Moelis seems to be in the right place at the right time. And it seems to have a path to grow into a behemoth in corporate finance while rewarding shareholders along the way.

Hot Bank Stocks To Buy For 2019: Mastercard Incorporated(MA)

Let’s do a double for this one: Visa Inc (NYSE:V) and Mastercard Inc (NYSE:MA). Both companies are huge beneficiaries of the same trend, as global consumers continue moving to credit and debit from cash and check. Further, growing e-commerce sales bode well for V and MA too, for obvious reasons.

The credit card business is attractive for many reasons, as V and MA serve as simple “toll booth” businesses. They don’t lend consumers money and they don’t take on big risks. Instead, when a consumer purchases goods or services from a merchant and pays via credit card, the merchant pays a fee that goes to V and MA.

While the pair of stocks may look expensive on a sales basis at first glance, the earnings-based valuation isn’t all that bad. Especially considering their double-digit earnings and revenue growth.

Throw in the fact that Visa has profit margins of almost 40% while MA has margins of 32% and we can see that these two are earning money hand over fist.

Both stocks tend to trade with a high correlation. They’ve been in a steady uptrend since early 2017 and I hate that I’ve taken some off the table since I first initiated a position almost six years ago.

As V and MA both bump up against resistance, they look like they’ll soon push through to new highs, short of another market-wide selloff.