It goes without saying that the key reason why the novel coronavirus has been so devastating is that it has impacted every facet of our lives. In other words, what we have always accepted as normal may never return. Naturally, this dramatic shift has cratered many traditional businesses and industries. At the same time, it may offer longer-term upside potential for quirky stocks to buy.
But that brings up the age-old question: Which specific names should investors focus on? Before I address this, I really like what George Bittlingmayer, professor emeritus of business economics and finance at University of Kansas had to say regarding the coronavirus-impacted economy. In an email to InvestorPlace, Bittlingmayer wrote:
“The experts that I trust regarding the virus have been cautious about making predictions, and since the economic outcome depends on how we handle the virus, stock market predictions should be cautious too. …We don’t know if all the bad news is out yet. That said, we will master the coronavirus eventually or learn to live with it. Humans are ingenious and our institutions are adaptable.”
Readily, Bittlingmayer acknowledges that some stocks to buy in the pre-coronavirus paradigm may fail. At the same time, other publicly traded companies will rise amid their ashes. Essentially, it’s Wall Street’s version of the “Circle of Life.”
Further, quirky organizations either have business models that have suddenly become relevant or feature products or services that never go out of style. Some of the best stocks to buy have a combination of both features. Here are nine particular companies I’m looking at:
- Coupa Software (NASDAQ:COUP)
- Glu Mobile (NASDAQ:GLUU)
- Axon Enterprise (NASDAQ:AAXN)
- Match Group (NASDAQ:MTCH)
- Turning Point Brands (NYSE:TPB)
- Champignon Brands (OTCMKTS:SHRMF)
- MindMed (OTCMKTS:MMEDF)
- Carvana (NYSE:CVNA)
- RCI Hospitality (NASDAQ:RICK)
Quirky Stocks: Coupa Software (COUP)
Covid-19 is disrupting our understanding of work. A dream scenario for many cubicle warriors, telecommuting has become a national mandate. However, this circumstance is also a nightmare for many organizations as they struggle to keep their financials in check.
Fortunately, emerging business technology firms like Coupa Software offer much needed and relevant services. Specializing in consolidating all business spending in one intuitive platform, Coupa’s platform gives companies a full understanding of their monetary inflows and outflows.
After all, a business must understand its numbers. Thus, it’s not surprising that COUP stock has held up well in quarantine.
Moreover, when the economy eventually restarts, most organizations will be in a financially challenged state. Coupa Software makes sure that every dollar spent is accounted for, making COUP stock a valuable long-term play.
Glu Mobile (GLUU)
If you’re looking for stocks to buy that can survive and thrive during this pandemic, entertainment companies are among your best bet. Specifically, you can’t go wrong with video games because really, what else are people doing right now?
That said, traditional video games have become bulky and expensive affairs. Often, you’ll pay hundreds for a current-generation console, along with $60 to $70 for a just-released popular game.
However, the rise in mobile gaming has made tremendous gains in market share, boosting the profile of Glu Mobile and GLUU stock.
Providing many quirky titles, Glu Mobile separates itself from other gaming platforms with its broad appeal. Further, the nationwide shelter-in-place orders have given the underlying company a hostage audience. I expect the company to carry the bulk of its new subscribers into the post-coronavirus era, making GLUU stock an interesting idea.
Axon Enterprise (AAXN)
Near the top of this story, Bittlingmayer expressed his optimism that the economy will eventually rebound. However, it’s also fair to point out that this may take a very long time. For instance, more than half of workers in Los Angeles are now unemployed. Across the nation, several metropolitan areas are suffering similar woes. Because of this crisis, you may want to check out Axon Enterprise.
Among quirky stocks to buy related to the self-defense industry, AAXN stock is perhaps the quirkiest. Unlike a firearm, Axon Enterprise specializes in non-lethal projections, specifically its Taser.
Rather than firing a bullet, the Taser launches projectiles that temporarily debilitate an assailant.
While eccentric, the thesis for AAXN stock is no laughing matter. Once the coronavirus crisis hit, a record number of Americans lined up to purchase guns. However, guns open a legal can of worms. With Tasers, you have a viable defensive tool without the moral overhang.
Match Group (MTCH)
As social distancing has become part of our new normal, the concept of love and dating has been badly disrupted. Obviously, you’re going to be a lot more careful with intimate interactions. At first, that bodes poorly for Match Group, the famous online dating service. However, MTCH stock could be one of the most contrarian of quirky stocks to buy.
First, no pandemic will ever destroy human desires and instincts. If that were the case, our species would have died out long ago. And as Bittlingmayer mentioned, we will either find a treatment for the coronavirus or learn to live with it.
Another huge positive for MTCH stock is that the quarantine lifestyle has changed many people’s opinions about online dating. If you’re feeling lonely, this is the only platform available. Therefore, MTCH is also probably the smartest long-term play among stocks to buy.
Turning Point Brands (TPB)
I know a few people in the vaping industry and they informed me that business is doing well. Frankly, I found that surprising, given health advocacy groups going after vaporizers. At the same time, it’s also understandable. With millions of Americans stuck at home, many are going stir crazy. If they have an addictive personality, that makes things worse.
Although a very risky pick among quirky stocks to buy, you may want to give Turning Point Brands some consideration. Last year, management reacted quickly to the vaping controversy, consolidating its business but still maintaining profitability. That may have turned out to be a very fortuitous move as many companies are just now starting to make painful cuts.
Therefore, TPB stock might avoid some of the extreme volatility associated with this sector.
Plus, it appears that areas where vaping was popular prior to the Covid-19 pandemic remain on board with the trend. With such a robust market, TPB stock may offer surprising upside.
Champignon Brands (SHRMF)
From its name, you might think that Champignon Brands specializes in premium alcoholic beverages. Instead, SHRMF stock represents equity in one of the most compelling and controversial sectors in memory: psychedelic stocks to buy.
Utilizing dissociative anesthetics like ketamine and medicinal mushrooms, Champignon Brands has an unorthodox approach to deliver effective solutions for mental health challenges, such as depression and post-traumatic stress disorder. Because SHRMF stock is a purely therapeutic play and not a recreational investment, prospective buyers have the confidence of a very high barrier to entry.
Despite the bad boy allure of psychedelic stocks to buy, this is serious stuff. Not everyone can dive into this world, which separates psychedelics from the marijuana and cannabidiol (CBD) market.
Furthermore, while the medical community works around the clock to contain Covid-19, mental health concerns have silently fallen by the wayside. Even as we come out of quarantine, we can expect lingering mental health pressures. Therefore, I expect SHRMF stock to be extraordinarily relevant years down the line.
And in this case, I’m putting my money where my mouth is.
Increasing momentum in cannabis legalization has brought much excitement to North America. Finally, adults — to varying degrees — can access cannabis-based therapies. Unfortunately, this did not translate to robust growth across most marijuana stocks to buy. Hence, I can understand why psychedelic firms like MindMed suffer from significant skepticism.
Presumably, one of those initial skeptics was Shark Tank’s Kevin O’Leary, who goes by “Mr. Wonderful.” As an investor in MMEDF stock, O’Leary’s endorsement is huge. Clearly, he understands the controversial nature of psychedelic drugs. More importantly, he realizes how such a controversy could negatively impact his reputation.
Nevertheless, he became convinced of its potential in addressing mental health and addiction problems.
But before O’Leary signed up, he had MindMed CEO JR Rahn promise him that the company would not pursue recreational drugs. And that’s really the key here. Yes, psychedelics are dangerously addictive narcotics. But when administered by medical professionals, they offer effective solutions where standard medicines have failed.
As with any new market, MMEDF stock presents high risks. But given the exceptional pertinent business, I’m also putting skin in the game here.
Out of the quirky stocks to buy that I researched for this gallery, Carvana gave me the most headaches. While CVNA stock offers tremendous potential, it also has significant downside risk. Therefore, I’ll lay out both arguments and let you decide.
On the positive end of the spectrum, Carvana helped mainstream the concept of “dealer-less” automotive purchases. Rather than subject yourself to high-pressure sales tactics at a traditional car dealership, Carvana allows you to pick the car that you want. A few days later, your dream ride arrives on your driveway.
Today, CVNA stock also has the advantage of its underlying business practicing social distancing before this was a thing.
On the other end, used car prices have plummeted and will likely continue this trend. That’s because rental car services are performing poorly and may flood wholesale auction houses with mountains of vehicles. Combined with the possibility of an extended recession, CVNA stock may suffer a profitability problem.
RCI Hospitality (RICK)
Like Match Group, RCI Hospitality represents a service that will never go out of style. However, RICK stock is a much trickier contrarian play. Although some states are slowly relaxing their shelter-in-place orders, many states have yet to stand down.
Therefore, non-essential services like the “hospitality” industry will continue to suffer. That’s why I’m placing RICK last in line among my quirky stocks to buy.
However, many market bulls have mentioned the concept of pent-up demand. For some industries, running with this thesis may be naïve. Because the coronavirus is both a health and economic threat, most Americans arguably will not spend their money on frivolous matters.
Well, the “hospitality” industry is a tricky beast. With so many single, lonely gentlemen looking for an outlet but forced to stay at home, it’s very plausible that demand could skyrocket for RICK stock.
A former senior business analyst for Sony Electronics, Josh Enomoto has helped broker major contracts with Fortune Global 500 companies. Over the past several years, he has delivered unique, critical insights for the investment markets, as well as various other industries including legal, construction management, and healthcare. As of this writing, he is long SHRMF and MMEDF.