- With the Olympics coming to a close in Vancouver on the last day of February, there will plenty of reflection on the thrilling achievements and heartbreaking defeats of the winter games. But for many of the world-class athletes packing up shop and leaving Canada this week, their attention is already on the 2014 Olympic games in Russia.
We’ve seen a lot from our neighbors to the north over the course of the winter games. I hope investors aren’t quite as hasty to hit the road when the party ends, though. There are some really remarkable profit opportunities right now in Canada.
As a resource-rich nation with an educated workforce, Canada is a world economic leader and easily ranks in the top 10 trading nations with nearly 40% of its GDP derived from exports. And with the Canadian dollar on a tear lately, the profit potential is really quite impressive in this nation right now.
To help you cash in on this trend, here are 7 Top Canadian Stocks.
Canadian Stock #1 -
Cameco Corp. (CCJ)
Canada’s Cameco Corp. (CCJ) is a leading nuclear energy company. As the world’s largest low-cost uranium producer, Cameco satisfies almost 20% of the world’s demand. The company was founded in Saskatoon, Canada, in 1987 and has its roots in gold mining — which still contributes a bit to CCJ’s bottom line.
Though precious metals are the rage on Wall Street right now, the Cameco’s uranium business is what has the most potential in the current market. As global warming becomes increasingly important to governments around the world, emission-free nuclear power is once again returning to favor.
President Obama himself made a pitch for nuclear power in a Nevada press stop last week, saying the industry is clean, safe and could create thousands of new jobs. When the U.S. gets behind nuclear power in earnest, it’s sure to mean big things for uranium supplier CCJ.
Canadian Stock #2 – Canadian National Railway (CNI)
Montreal-based Canadian National Railway (CNI) operates
about 21,000 route-miles of rail that span all the way from the frozen north down to the Mississippi Delta — nearly enough track to wrap around the entire world. Since Canada is one of the largest countries in the world by geography (second only to Russia with an area of about 4 million square miles), the transportation and freight industries are vital and very lucrative parts of the nation’s economy.
The reason I’m so bullish on CNI right now is that the company is a large player in transporting commodities, including Canada’s exports of timber and metals and imports of energy from the United States. In Canadian National’s latest earnings report in January, the company stated that Q4 shipments grew for coal, grain and fertilizers and petroleum and chemicals — and this is in spite of bad weather and a five-day strike that really messed with CNI’s schedule. Just imagine how CNI will do in the warmer months as the economy continues to improve.
Canadian Stock #3 -
EnCana (ECA) is one of North America’s largest independent natural gas producers, boasting nearly 13 trillion cubic feet of reserves. Canada is ECA’s main stomping ground, since the company is headquartered in Calgary, Alberta, but EnCana also has exploration efforts in Brazil, the Middle East, Greenland and even France.
In late 2009, EnCana spun off its tar-sands oil business into a separate company, Cenovus (CVE). This was a very wise move, because it allowed the company to focus on its natural gas business and really leverage its massive reserves. Though natural gas prices are down from their historic levels, futures have doubled in the past five months. This is a very bullish sign for gas producers like EnCana.
Canadian Stock #4 -
Headquartered in the Olympic venue of Vancouver, GoldCorp (GG)
is one of the largest precious-metal mining companies in the world. GG operates mainly in Canada and South America, and produces more than 2.3 million ounces of gold annually, and has about 45 million ounces in proved and probable reserves. But don’t be fooled by the name — GoldCorp also owns 1.2 billion ounces of proved and probable silver reserves and 1.4 billion pounds of copper reserves.
Every investor is aware of gold’s record run recently, but that’s just one reason I’m bullish on GG. Silver and copper prices
have been on a tear lately, and the diverse mining operations of GoldCorp make it a great investment right now no matter what happens with gold.
Canadian Stock #5 -
Potash Corp. of Saskatchewan (POT) produces fertilizers, agricultural
chemicals and feed products — primarily its namesake “potash,” or potassium carbonate mixed with other nutrients. Though this company is down dramatically from its highs in 2008, I think POT has bottomed out and now investor sentiment is turning around.
For instance, Potash’s moved 1.1 million tons of crop nutrients in the fourth quarter, which was down compared to the previous quarter, but the 23% slide was a dramatic improvement over the 65% decline for the full year. Potash has been struggling to find a right production target, and I feel like the company is close to an effective target.
What’s more, potash prices could be on the rise globally after leading exporter Belarussian Potash Co. boosted prices by more than 6% in Brazil and Asia. That means companies like POT can also command a higher price — and deliver bigger profits going forward.
Canadian Stock #6 -
Research In Motion (RIMM)
Headquartered in Waterloo, Ontario, Canada, consumer electronics giant Research In Motion (RIMM) basically invented the smartphone, rolling out its iconic BlackBerry device in 2002. The gadget has been providing endless distractions to businessmen and women ever since — including Barack Obama, who claims he’d be lost without his BlackBerry.
This technology is completely in synch with modern businesses and consumers alike, and stylish new offerings like the BlackBerry Bold and the BlackBerry Curve continue to find broad appeal even as the iPhone remains the gadget du jour. The company has improved its earnings across each of the last four quarters and has also topped Wall Street estimates in each of the last four reporting periods. That’s a strong trend of success that even the iPhone can’t disrupt.
I remain confident that RIMM is a smartphone heavyweight that’s here to stay, and I look forward to continued success from this stock.
Canadian Stock #7 -
Toronto-Dominion Bank (TD)
Some financials are still risky investments right now, but Toronto-Dominion Bank (TD)
is a stable and highly profitable pick for any portfolio. With 2,600 automated banking machines and a network of 1,116 branches located in Canada, this Toronto-based company definitely has the size to compete with the financial heavyweights — but unlike some of its counterparts in the U.S., it never needed a government lifeline to stay afloat even in the depths of the recession. According to World Economic Forum, Canada has the world’s “soundest” banking system, and it is the only country in the G7 that did not have to come to the aid of its financial sector with a state sponsored bailout.
TD continues to post strong earnings and growing profits quarter after quarter, and boasts very nice dividend yield of 3.7%. That makes Toronto-Dominion a financial stock you can take to the bank.