I’m not entirely sure how true this is today. But back in 2015, CNN Business released a report that indicated that the number of individual equity units peaked at 7,652 during the summer of 1998. That of course was when speculation was building toward the eventual internet and technology bubble. In 2015, the number eventually slid to 3,812. Still, that’s plenty enough to find hidden gem stocks to buy.
With multiple initial public offerings (IPOs) — especially from special purpose acquisition companies (SPACs) — the number of publicly traded securities has surely grown over the nearly six years since the CNN report went live. Just from statistical realities, it’s just not possible for every equity unit to be bid up with the same level of enthusiasm as the most popular securities. Therefore, even in this crazy bull market, you can find hidden gem stocks.
Interestingly, the meme stock phenomenon provides an excellent example of the opportunities still available with hidden gem stocks. As you know, coordinated efforts on social media have driven up securities that were left for dead. But as the hordes pile into one name, others tend to shed their newfound valuation spikes. It’s like caring for your plants — if you don’t water them all, some will wither away.
Fortunately, that doesn’t happen in the equities sector. Instead, they become hidden gem stocks. While they’re not the easiest to find, the market thrives on popular sentiment and momentum. And not every company and brand can receive an equal amount of love. After all, there are only so many resources to go around.
True, the extreme speculation in the market has made it extraordinarily difficult to find publicly traded securities that haven’t already shot up to the moon. But again, with thousands of opportunities out there, it’s not possible for every bandwagon to be filled to capacity. Here are my ideas for hidden gem stocks to buy.
- Tofutti (OTCMTKS:TOFB)
- Fast Retailing (OTCMKTS:FRCOY)
- IBM (NYSE:IBM)
- Scholastic (NASDAQ:SCHL)
- P.A.M. Transportation Services (NASDAQ:PTSI)
- Kawasaki Heavy Industries (OTCMKTS:KWHIY)
- First Graphene (OTCMKTS:FGPHF)
For this list, I tried to keep it diverse, with ideas from big blue chips that have gone underappreciated to smaller speculative names that could be the gamechangers of tomorrow. Practice careful money management with these hidden gem stocks and who knows? You might enjoy significant profitability.
Hidden Gem Stocks: Tofutti (TOFB)
To kick things off, I’m going with Tofutti. You might know this brand as the manufacturer of dairy-free soy based ice cream. It’s a brilliant concept because I don’t know anybody who doesn’t like ice cream. And rest assured that you’re terrible person if you don’t (I’m just kidding). However, lactose intolerance is very common in the U.S.
According to MedlinePlus, a government health resource, about “30 million American adults have some degree of lactose intolerance by age 20.” Further, it goes on to state that every demographic is affected by lactose intolerance to some degree (although the least affected are western or northern Europeans). With the population of this country becoming more diverse, you’d expect that the fundamental narrative for TOFB stock will only improve.
Better yet, Tofutti isn’t just about ice cream. Instead, the company diversified into other product categories, including various cheeses and frozen foods. To be sure, TOFB stock is on the smaller side of the spectrum, with a market capitalization south of $17 million. Still, with health consciousness increasing in scope, you should look into Tofutti as one of the hidden gem stocks to consider.
Fast Retailing (FRCOY)
When I was watching an interview with Steven Yeun of The Walking Dead fame — I believe it was with Conan O’Brien but don’t quote me on that — he stated that he likes visiting Japan to buy clothing. I thought to myself that this was strange. Why fly all the way over there when you can buy clothes from this guy?
The reality is that brands under Japan’s Fast Retailing — most notable for its primary subsidiary Uniqlo — fit people hailing or originating from countries in the eastern hemisphere much better than western fashion brands. And I would say that’s really true for American fashion, which is one of the most difficult jobs in the world.
Think about it: you’ve got a very diverse population so it’s challenging to say what is the size of the average American person. Also, many people here are widening out, which adds to the complexity.
On the other hand, in the eastern hemisphere, it’s much easier to pinpoint who your average target customer is. Following an expected disruption from the novel coronavirus, FRCOY stock looks to make a comeback with a solid first quarter of 2021 earnings report. This definitely belongs in your list of hidden gem stocks to consider.
Hidden Gem Stocks: IBM (IBM)
I’m probably going to face some criticism for this so let’s just address it. How can I possibly put IBM on a list of hidden gem stocks to buy? Yes, it may be an investment that’s worthy of your portfolio. But it’s hardly an unknown asset. I mean, it’s listed among the 30 companies in the Dow Jones Industrial Average. I get it.
At the same time, IBM stock has gained 16% on a year-to-date (YTD) basis. This beat out Intel (NASDAQ:INTC), which is up 14.7% over the same frame. Even more surprising, the toast of Wall Street in the semiconductor space, Advanced Micro Devices (NASDAQ:AMD), is down nearly 8% for the year. Yet you don’t see too many folks on the mainstream pound the table on Big Blue.
That’s why I put IBM on this list of hidden gem stocks. They should be pounding the table. Primarily, the company offers incredible acumen across several tech segments, including the blockchain. What I like about IBM blockchain over decentralized platforms is that if you as a client have a problem with it, you can always reach out to IBM.
Who are you going to talk to in a purely decentralized blockchain? Some miner in Lithuania? Not going to happen. Second, IBM stock has a solid dividend yield, something you don’t want to ignore during these uncertain times.
Likely on the very edge of being considered one of the hidden gem stocks because of its incredible performance, I’m still going to stick Scholastic in here simply because education-related equity units will be super-relevant moving forward. But yes, the performance is outrageous. On a YTD basis, SCHL stock gained almost 55%. Not bad for a company specializing in schoolbooks.
Of course, because of the Covid-19 crisis, the nature of education encountered an unexpected paradigm shift. Suddenly, online learning protocols became all the rage. This had negative implications for SCHL but the real question was this: is online learning truly effective?
As with anything, much debate surrounds the issue. Christine Greenhow, associate professor of educational technology in the College of Education at Michigan State University stated that “Online learning can be as good or even better than in-person classroom learning…but it has to be done right.” On the other hand, a columnist for the University of Alabama opined that face-to-face learning is superior, especially once realizing the realities of online learning due to Covid-19.”
Personally, I believe face-to-face learning will make a big comeback and that should put SCHL in the driver’s seat.
Hidden Gem Stocks: P.A.M. Transportation Services (PTSI)
One of the riskier hidden gem stocks, P.A.M. Transportation Services is likely a company in the namesake industry that you probably haven’t heard of. According to its website, P.A.M. provides “nationwide dry van truckload, expedited truckload, intermodal, and logistics services to the manufacturing, retail, and automotive industries.” As well, it runs irregular routes, with these attributes providing an intriguing case for PTSI stock.
First, according to the Dow Jones Transportation Average, the underlying sector is red hot. The benchmark index recently hit an all-time high and still remains incredibly elevated. Sure enough, PTSI stock is up nearly 20% YTD and up almost 84% over the trailing year. As the country gradually recovers from the Covid-19 crisis, it’s possible that the transportation sector can run even higher.
On a side note, P.A.M.’s automotive transportation services business should perform well considering that car sales have gone ballistic, particularly in the used-car market.
Second, the irregular route specialty may come in handy as millennials who are desperate to buy a home in this crazy environment choose neighborhoods that are off the beaten path. Thanks to the shift toward remote work, these lesser-known neighborhoods are now on the radar.
Of course, when a sector is red hot, it may signal a possible correction. Therefore, approach PTSI carefully.
Kawasaki Heavy Industries (KWHIY)
For the last two corporations on this list of hidden gem stocks, I’m going to go off on the highly speculative route. Before you place an objection about it, just note that I’m giving you fair warning ahead of time. To lead off, I’ll begin with the least risky of the speculative names, Kawasaki Heavy Industries.
For you riding enthusiasts, you’ll know Kawasaki as the manufacturer of the famous Ninja brand of motorcycles. Additionally, the company makes off-road vehicles and jet skis. But you may be surprised to learn that Kawasaki is roughly the equivalent of Japan’s General Electric (NYSE:GE), with influence on several industries, including robotics, construction, material handling and oil and gas facilities.
But the area I’m focusing on is defense and security. As an island nation, Japan has a rather formidable maritime security infrastructure and that’s in no small part to Kawasaki. With the Pacific theater already a hot bed of geopolitical tension and with relations unlikely to improve, the cynical business narrative for KWHIY stock could dramatically improve.
But the problem is, it better. The Covid-19 crisis negatively affected Kawasaki. From recent revenue trends, it appears that the company’s revenue for the fiscal year ended March 31, 2021 will be down double digits against the year-ago comparison.
Hidden Gem Stocks: First Graphene (FGPHF)
Easily the riskiest hidden gem stocks on this list, First Graphene also has the biggest potential. Headquartered in Australia, its geographic location is one hidden gem that many folks don’t appreciate. There are plenty of opportunities in the Australian Securities Exchange that you should look into if you have access to foreign equity units.
If not, you’re in luck with FGPHF stock. Underlining this security is in my opinion a company that can spark the most profound paradigm shift across all industries. Specializing in the research and development of the namesake graphene, this physics miracle is the thinnest material known to exist. Basically, graphene is a two-dimensional object, which is difficult to conceptualize. But it’s also 200-times stronger than steel.
These attributes have tremendous implications as additives to enhance resilience and durability for construction materials. Graphene can also play a game-changing role in electric vehicles, catalyzing innovations in battery technology that can deliver range and performance at a reasonable price.
Of course, the downside of graphene is scientists have long known about its remarkable qualities but no one has been able to convert this into commercially viable applications at scale. Maybe First Graphene will be the first or maybe not. For what it’s worth, it has my speculation funds.
On the date of publication, Josh Enomoto held a LONG position in FGPHF. The opinions expressed in this article are those of the writer, subject to the InvestorPlace.com Publishing Guidelines.
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.