Winter Stocks to Buy, Second Runner-Up: Vail Resorts (MTN)
Fortress Investment Group (FIG) took Intrawest Resorts Holdings Inc. (SNOW) public on Jan. 31, selling 15.63 million shares at $12. The private equity firm took Intrawest’s biggest resort — Whistler Blackcomb Holdings (WSBHF) — public in November 2010. After selling off some resorts, it’s left with seven four-season resorts including Mt. Tremblant in Canada and Steamboat in the U.S.
Frankly, without Whistler Blackcomb, SNOW isn’t one of the best winter stocks to buy. Instead I’d go with Vail Resorts (MTN), which operates 10 resorts in six states including Vail and Beaver Creek. It doesn’t pay a huge dividend — yield of 1.2% compared to 6.6% for Whistler Blackcomb — but its long-term prognosis is good, and MTN stock has outperformed the S&P 500 over every major time period in the past 15 years.