She Called the Last 14 Market Corrections

Introducing: Stefanie Kammerman, Legendary Dark Pool Trader. For the 1st time ever, a former financial insider is stepping forward to show you how to spot Wall Street’s “hidden” trades before they move the market.

Wed, July 15 at 7:00PM ET

Investing During Coronavirus: Facebook Stock Is a Buy as TikTok Sparks Controversy

These are the top coronavirus stocks to buy right now, with new stock picks updated daily from the sharpest investing minds in the business

Latest Stocks to Buy Updates:

Facebook Stock Is a Buy as TikTok Sparks Controversy

[Thursday, July 9, 4:15 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

The baby boomers found out about TikTok, and now it’s in trouble.

OK, that’s not exactly what happened. Consumers turned en masse to TikTok, the short-form video platform run by China’s ByteDance, at the start of the pandemic. The app met record success, as users all around the world downloaded it to fill time in quarantine. Much of the content is dedicated to dance challenges, cute pets and short-form comedy.

TikTok really did boom in popularity. Companies like The Trade Desk (NASDAQ:TTD) rushed to figure out advertising on the platform, and PepsiCo (NASDAQ:PEP) launched a video campaign. Unfortunately for ByteDance, its massive user base may be about to shift over to Facebook’s  (NASDAQ:FB) newest offering.

So what exactly happened to 2020’s darling? Well, geopolitical tensions are rising all around the world. Many security experts fear that ByteDance, and therefore TikTok, is linked to the Chinese government and military. In Hong Kong, a new law requires tech companies to cooperate and share data with the government. Instead of navigating that delicate situation, TikTok has pulled out.

China’s military moves also cost TikTok access to India, and President Donald Trump is considering nixing the app in the United States. What would be an unfortunate day for many content creators could be a victory for Facebook, thanks to its new Reels platform.

Reels is essentially a direct competitor to TikTok. Unlike Facebook’s other short-form video experiments, Reels will be a part of the Instagram experience. The company is currently testing it in India, and it’s already live in France, Brazil and Germany. According to Tech Crunch’s Sarah Perez, Reels is smartly responding to pilot feedback and expanding access to music and other content licensing. Although it faces competition from other apps in India, it could fill that market quickly in the absence of TikTok.

That path to success is enough for InvestorPlace Markets Analyst Luke Lango. Recognizing that both the coronavirus and geopolitical tensions are here to stay, he sees Reels powering FB stock to $275. If Reels can generate even a fraction of the excitement and loyalty that TikTok found, it could be seriously big.

Nasdaq Sets a Record High as Stocks Fumble

[Thursday, July 9, 4:01 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Just as many investors are split between reopening hopes and novel coronavirus fears, the stock market is split between tech stocks and all other stocks. Nothing illustrates that better than Thursday’s odd price action in the major indices.

The Nasdaq Composite actually hit record highs on Thursday. That’s thanks to similar moves by tech giants Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN), Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT), Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL), Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) and Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX). These companies have continued to profit handsomely despite the pandemic. In fact, some of them have profited because of the pandemic.

Elsewhere in the market, things aren’t so pretty. Walgreens (NASDAQ:WBA) stumbled Thursday on mixed earnings resultsWells Fargo (NYSE:WFC) similarly had stocks falling reports leaked it would cut “thousands” of positions later this year.

So should investors be looking to Amazon or to Wells Fargo for a read on the stock market? There’s no good answer to that. It’s clear that Amazon is a winner, but is it a sign of economic recovery, or a standout among the wreckage?

For now, investors can cheer that the Nasdaq Composite closed in the green today. Unfortunately, the S&P 500 and the Dow Jones Industrial Average weren’t so lucky.

  • The S&P 500 closed lower by 0.56%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed lower by 1.38%
  • The Nasdaq Composite closed higher by 0.53%

5 Music Stocks to Buy for Your Pandemic Playlist

[Thursday, July 9, 3:06 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Sitting at home alone — especially amid the novel coronavirus pandemic — can be quite unpleasant. That’s why I love to blast a playlist consisting exclusively of songs by Enya and The Cranberries all day. I’m sure my neighbors love it just as much.

But in all seriousness, music streaming is a huge business. Pop in your headphones, turn on a speaker or connect your phone to your car’s audio system. Then, play your favorite tunes. Before the pandemic, music streaming was relevant especially in gyms and on commutes. That’s why some investors feared that streaming, and the underlying music stocks, would suffer once the coronavirus hit.

That didn’t happen. Instead, whole households turned to music streaming to fill silent moments and to accompany crowded kitchens. Consumers started streaming “cooking” playlists and tunes designed for home workouts. Plus, as music streaming platforms race to nab exclusive podcast deals, many consumers found comfort in new podcasts.

Despite the massive popularity of music streaming, InvestorPlace’s Chris Markoch wrote today that many investors ignore music stocks. Instead, they buy up red-hot names in TV or video streaming, ignoring a ton of upside potential. Just think about it. The industry went from tiny devices to billions of dollars in revenue. Where will it go next?

Next time you find yourself wailing along to your favorite song, consider adding these five music stocks to your portfolio:

  • Spotify (NYSE:SPOT)
  • Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL)
  • Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN)
  • Tencent (OTCMKTS:TCEHY)
  • Sirius XM (NASDAQ:SIRI)

Altimmune Stock Soars on New Vaccine Funding Efforts

[Thursday, July 9, 2:32 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Thankfully, investors are getting some good news about a novel coronavirus vaccine on Thursday. They really need it, especially as new cases continue to climb around the U.S. and the rest of the world. Today’s shining star is Altimmune (NASDAQ:ALT), a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company.

So what’s Altimmune’s claim to fame? Over the last few months, it’s been working on a single-dose, intranasal vaccine for Covid-19. Unlike other vaccines, Altimmune wants its candidate to be less invasive. It will only require one dose, and it’s intranasal as opposed to the standard subcutaneous method.

Today, Altimmune announced through a company press release that it was partnering with DynPort Vaccine Company. DynPort will help Altimmune coordinate funding — hopefully bringing it some cash from the U.S. government. It will also provide program management, drug development activity integration and regulatory support for Altimmune’s AdCOVID vaccine candidate. Investors love the news, sending ALT stock higher by 30% in intraday trading.

Why is this news so exciting? If you haven’t been paying attention, pretty much any victory, regardless of the size, has the power to send a stock skyrocketing. Plus, many investors have been waiting for Altimmune to find a meaningful partner. InvestorPlace analyst Louis Navellier wrote early in March that the “truly innovative developer” could be a coronavirus winner if it secured a partner.

For what it’s worth, Navellier sees Altimmune’s potential going beyond the coronavirus. Some of the clinical-stage names in the vaccine race don’t have much else going for them. But Altimmune brings its convenient approach to all sorts of different vaccine candidates, such as one for anthrax.

Whether you’re a fan of Altimmune or just looking for a ray of bullish hope amid the storm, you’re in luck. Keep a close eye on this biopharma company’s work with DynPort and the progress of its AdCOVID. The duo could go far.

Buy PayPal and Square Stock for a Payments Revolution

[Thursday, July 9, 12:07 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Can you send me $5 for your half of the pizza on Venmo?

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard or asked that question. If you go out to dinner with your friends, plan a weekend trip or even split monthly rent with roommates, you’ve likely found yourself in a similar position. Up until recently, the Cash App and Venmo platforms from Square (NYSE:SQ) and PayPal (NASDAQ:PYPL) were just that. Social payment platforms.

Sure, that made Cash App and Venmo popular enough. Now you could split costs without having to grab cash from the bank or an ATM. And as younger consumers move more and more toward a cash-free lifestyle, these mobile apps became a perfect fit. However, their parent companies wanted bigger growth, and wanted the apps to play a larger role in the payments revolution.

The novel coronavirus has definitely helped. According to MarketWatch’s Emily Bary, one big way the pandemic made Cash App and Venmo relevant was through calls for donations. Consumers could send a few extra bucks to restaurant staff or other important causes. Plus, many brick-and-mortar businesses pivoted to online ordering and payment systems, bringing the apps new customers.

Another big catalyst came from stimulus funding. Individuals could opt to receive their stimulus checks through Cash App or Venmo, as a sort of direct deposit. Plus, in a move to compete with big banks, Square and PayPal entered the Paycheck Protection Program space. All of a sudden these apps were now tied to day-to-day survival.

As Morning Brew’s Neil Freyman wrote recently, Square and PayPal aren’t stopping there. PayPal’s Venmo just rolled out new features to court small businesses. Essentially, the smallest of small businesses, like independent crafters or hairdressers, can now use Business Profiles to market themselves. Tech Crunch’s Sarah Perez says it’s a great for sellers to add business information and raise awareness for their work through Venmo’s social feed.

Cash App has long allowed users to buy and sell bitcoin on the app, and now users can also trade equities. A new acquisition of Spain’s Verse will also help with international expansion. It’s clear that both companies are focusing on new features as the pandemic makes their underlying businesses more relevant.

The payments revolution is here. Don’t miss out.

Follow America’s Richest Family to Grow Your Wealth

[Thursday, July 9, 11:12 a.m.]
Contributed by Andrew Taylor

Do you want to know the No. 1 way to grow your wealth right now? Follow the lead of America’s richest family.

Most people know the richest man in America is Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) founder Jeff Bezos.

He gets tons of press and mainstream media attention.

But few people realize that America’s richest family actually has A LOT more money than Bezos … and they are making some radical moves with their business and their money.

I’m talking about the Walton family, who control the Walmart (NYSE:WMT) empire, and are estimated to have a net worth of more than $200 billion.

The Waltons are now doing something fascinating with their money, and their business, which every American must pay attention to.

In short, the Waltons are investing billions into new technologies that could radically transform not only Walmart, but everything about the way you eat, shop, work and live.

For example, Walmart is operating a pilot program called “Alphabot” in New Hampshire. It’s essentially a series of autonomous carts inside a 20,000-square-foot warehouse, which radically overhauls the world of online grocery shopping.

The company is also spending a fortune on in-store robotics … spent billions on one of the world’s best e-commerce businesses (called Flipkart), and now has an app that could replace some bank accounts.

The company even created a new business, called “Store No. 8,” which is essentially a technology incubator.

Investing legend Eric Fry believes what’s happening inside Walmart is a microcosm of what’s happening in America. He says:

A series of new technologies are making some people filthy rich, while leaving millions more behind. If you understand how to invest in and profit from these breakthroughs, it can make you rich — otherwise you’re going to get left behind.”

And the numbers are proving Fry correct…

CNBC reports that while tens of millions have lost their jobs since the start of the coronavirus pandemic, U.S. billionaires actually saw their fortunes INCREASE by more than $400 billion.

Fry says you absolutely must understand this shift that’s now occurring in the U.S. markets and financial system.

And this is why he recently traveled to America’s richest ZIP code to reveal the name and stock symbol of his No. 1 favorite tech investment in the world, right now.

You can check out Fry’s analysis totally free of charge on his website right here. There’s no subscription, email or credit card required.

Keep in mind: Eric Fry has what is widely considered by many to be the best stock-picking track record in the world.

To date he has identified 40 stocks that have gained 1,000% or more. We don’t know of anyone else on or off Wall Street who can match that record.

Don’t get left behind. Get the name and stock symbol of Eric Fry’s current No. 1 technology recommendation, free of charge, in his latest analysis, by clicking here.

Stocks Struggle Thursday After Weekly Jobless Report

[Thursday, July 9, 9:31 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Bulls really can’t get a break. Investors learned that another 1.3 million Americans filed for initial unemployment benefits for the week of July 4. Sure, economists were calling for that figure to be slightly higher — at 1.375 million individuals. But 1.3 million doesn’t really look like economic recovery.

If you want to frame this morning’s report positively, consider that the weekly total has been decelerating for 14 consecutive weeks. However, if you have a bit more pessimism in you, you’ll realize that 50 million Americans have now filed for those initial jobless benefits since the novel coronavirus began wreaking havoc.

Despite the bad news, the S&P 500, Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite composited all opened in the green. What will the rest of the day bring?

  • The S&P opened higher by 0.23%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average opened higher by 0.02%
  • The Nasdaq Composite opened higher by 0.67%

5 Stocks Set to Soar After the Coronavirus Selloff

[Wednesday, July 8, 4:05 p.m.]
Contributed by Andrew Taylor

Buy these 5 tech stocks immediately.

Eric Fry, one of America’s top investment strategists, provides his latest report titled, “5 Tech Stocks Set for 1,000% Gains After the Recent Coronavirus Sell-off.”

Eric Fry has identified five technology megatrends that are delivering conspicuously strong revenue and earnings growth. These five megatrends — and Eric’s five hot tech stock picks — will be booming for a very long time. You can’t afford to miss out on the once-in-a-decade chance to buy after the recent dip in the markets. Click here to download this hot-off-the-presses research report now. It’s yours free.

One of Alphabet’s ‘Other Bets’ Is Starting to Pay Off

[Wednesday, July 8, 3:35 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

If there’s one universal lesson we’ve learned from the novel coronavirus, it’s that the internet, and reliable access to it, is critical. All sorts of jobs went remote for the first time. Plus, entire nations shifted their K-12 and collegiate learning from in-classroom to at-home models. From the beginning of lockdowns, advocates have been questioning what will happen to students without good internet access. Now, it appears educational outcomes are on the line.

Acknowledging that internet access is key, several solutions are already ramping up. Lawmakers in the U.S. are pushing to better cover rural areas, and some school systems are now providing mobile hotspots and personal computers. Others are even driving buses with WiFi around to in-need neighborhoods. But what about the towns, states and even whole countries where internet access still isn’t consistent? How will those locales respond to a long-lasting pandemic?

That problem is one Alphabet (NASDAQ:GOOG, NASDAQ:GOOGL) is looking to address with its Loon business. Loon provides commercial internet service via high-altitude balloons — essentially an innovative alternative to cell tower infrastructure. After years of talk, Loon finally began operating its service at full scale, starting with Kenya. Although 39 million of Kenya’s 48 million residents already were connected to the internet, many officials worried about connectivity for all amid the pandemic.

Loon previously has provided its services as part of disaster relief efforts, deploying its balloons in Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria destroyed cell towers. But this is the business’ first full-scale mission, and it will have a lot of influence over Loon’s ability to expand to developing nations around the world.

Behind the headlines is also the reality that many of Alphabet’s so-called “other bets” are considered failures. Sure, the company has plenty of revenue and prestige from its main businesses. But it also continues to push for innovation in everything from self-driving cars to smart cities. If Loon succeeds, some estimate it could make “tens of billions in revenue” by charging $5 per month for its service. That would be a big difference from some of its peers.

While Loon technically “graduated” and became an independent business under Alphabet, its home in “Other Bets” isn’t far away. Will it soon generate tens of billions in revenue? And will other high-profile businesses like Wing and Waymo be right behind? Don’t look away.

VIRS and WFH Give ETF Bulls Some Big Coronavirus Plays

[Wednesday, July 8, 2:49 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Not too long ago, InvestorPlace’s Todd Shriber shared his review of the first-ever novel coronavirus exchange-traded fund. We later wrote in this blog that ETFMG Treatments Testing and Advancements ETF (NYSEARCA:GERM) was a great ETF to buy thanks to its focus on infectious diseases. Some of the fund’s top holdings include companies working to develop vaccines. Others are in the diagnostic space.

The thesis with the GERM ETF is simple. Clearly companies working to fight the novel coronavirus — and all future infectious diseases — are in a profitable space. But with so many vaccine candidates out there, it can be tricky and risky to pick individual stocks. Diversifying your coronavirus investing with an ETF gives you broad exposure and minimizes the volatility. For many, that’s a win-win situation.

Clearly, what GERM represents is popular. It’s now sharing the spotlight with two more coronavirus ETFs. The first is the Pacer BioThreat Strategy ETF (BATS:VIRS). It debuted June 24 with 45 holdings, all focusing on companies that protect the U.S. from biological threats. With that in mind, it includes tech giants like Nvidia (NASDAQ:NVDA) and Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) as well as retailer Walmart (NYSE:WMT). Test-kit maker Abbott Laboratories (NYSE:ABT) also has a top spot. Clearly, it takes a broad approach.

Noting its expense ratio of 0.7%, or $70 on an initial $10,000 investment, Shriber writes that investors get what they pay for. He says it’s the most diverse of the new ETFs, and the expense ratio speaks to the fund’s careful tailoring to the coronavirus. You certainly should add VIRS to your watch list.

And joining GERM and VIRS on the block is the Direxion Work From Home ETF (NYSEARCA:WFH). It debuted just a day after VIRS, on June 25, and holds 40 stocks. As its name implies, the WFH ETF is all about working from home. Its holdings include Twilio (NYSE:TWO), Crowdstrike (NASDAQ:CRWD) and Zoom Video Communications (NASDAQ:ZM).

As Shriber writes, WFH has a certain level of credibility and viability that other thematic ETFs don’t. In other words, working from home won’t disappear just because the pandemic fades. That means even long-term investors can benefit from this coronavirus play.

3 E-Scooter Stocks to Buy for the ‘Micromobility’ Movement

[Wednesday, July 8, 1:02 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Electric scooters promised to make “micromobility” happen. Companies like Lime and Bird launched with plans to prioritize minimizing the environmental impacts of transportation and improve transportation options within cities and college towns. But in many ways, e-scooters represent failure. Brands launched in cities without proper permitting, consumer scooters broke down or caught on fire, and critics point to a lack of pedestrian safety.

Just a quickly as these scooters came into the spotlight, they seemed headed for demise. As the novel coronavirus hit the United States, companies that offered “shared” models for electric scooters and bikes began laying off staff and pulling out of big cities. Uber (NYSE:UBER) made the decision to sell its Jump business to Lime, scrapping leftover scooters and bikes in the process. But as Bloomberg CityLab highlights, consumers need electric scooters now more than ever.

This paradoxical reality could be the saving grace for e-scooter companies. As Melinda Hanson and Alison Murphy write, with the right steps, these companies could come back successfully. As businesses and offices reopen, consumers will need transportation options that feel safer than buses and subways. Scooters and bikes could be the perfect solution.

Plus, popular attention is coming to the electric scooter world. As The Verge’s Sean O’Kean reported, a high-speed electric scooter racing series will launch in 2021. While there aren’t many more details yet on the eSkootr competition, it promises to showcase the affordability and accessibility of the scooters. Beyond providing entertainment, Axios’ Ben German writes that the new sport also is a commentary on car dependency, pollution and micromobility.

For investors, Lime and Bird remain private. But there are other opportunities thanks to under-the-radar names and partnerships from traditional automakers. As many industry experts work to make the electric scooter relevant again in the aftermath of the pandemic, you don’t want to miss out.

To start, there’s Niu Technologies (NASDAQ:NIU). InvestorPlace’s Josh Enomoto recently wrote that if you like skinny jeans, you’ll love Niu stock. In other words, the up-and-coming company is the perfect play on millennial trends. Younger consumers care more about the environment and their individual impact, so they’re more likely to embrace micromobility and electric scooters. Niu offers a sleek design, and its $3,800 price tag makes it more appealing than cars for post-pandemic transportation.

General Motors (NYSE:GM) and Volkswagen (OTCMKTS:VWAGY) are also players in the electric scooter space. GM has a slightly different approach, offering e-bikes under the ARIV brand. The bikes are currently only available in Germany and the Netherlands, but U.S. consumers may one day see the trendy Meld and Merge bikes. Both come in under $3,800. In 2019, Volkswagen debuted two concept scooters, the Streetmate and the Cityskater. Although they are not yet ready for purchase, VWAGY shares also benefit from the e-tron, an electric scooter sold under Volkswagen’s Audi.

It’s time to ready for yourself for this part of the electric future.

Amazon Stock Looks Tasty on New Grocery Plans

[Wednesday, July 8, 11:43 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

It certainly feels as if we are just days away from another round of panic-buying groceries and fighting over toilet paper rolls. At least, that’s what the rise in new novel coronavirus cases suggests. Whether or not consumers are willing to prep for more weeks of lockdown, Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) is set to benefit from a series of plans to up its presence in the grocery store world.

According to Retail Dive’s Jeff Wells, Amazon has confirmed a series of big moves that are especially relevant thanks to the pandemic. The e-commerce superstar already has its Whole Foods grocery chain and its Amazon Fresh delivery service. Plus, it has been piloting a cashier-less Amazon Go Grocery model in Seattle. The high-tech store addresses virus concerns while also providing easy access to a full range of fresh grocery items. All those initiatives combine to give Amazon growing power in the grocery vertical.

But, because it’s Amazon, that isn’t enough. As Wells wrote yesterday, the superstar is planning a few more big moves. Amazon will open two new Go Grocery locations in Washington, D.C. and in Redmond, Washington. Plus, understanding that Whole Foods targets a specific demographic of shoppers, the company is also planning on launching a separate supermarket brand in a handful of locations. In analyzing this strategy, one expert describes Amazon as looking to “suck the oxygen out of the room.” Clearly, Amazon and CEO Jeff Bezos like to dominate.

Amazon isn’t free from criticism, but its business seems to carry on unscathed. It is once again under antitrust scrutiny, which could raise concerns as it looks to dominate in yet another industry. Plus, many consumers have expressed outrage over its treatment of warehouse employees, particularly amid the pandemic. But, as Axios’ Erica Pandey wrote, it’s not yet enough to change the situation.

For investors, this means Amazon’s moves into the grocery world are a bullish catalyst. Keep a close eye on legal and social proceedings, but also have confidence that Bezos will continue to win.

4 Stocks to Buy for ‘Resilient’ Fundamentals

[Wednesday, July 8, 10:52 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

According to Credit Suisse analysts, many investors could soon see their dreams come true. What do I mean? Well, the firm thinks the next big stock market rally could be coming from a group of stocks it calls “Stable Yields” (subscription required). These are stocks that have resilient fundamentals and solid dividends. Essentially, investors could benefit from the added income and share-price growth at once.

This is big news, especially as companies have been slashing or suspending dividends left and right. Credit Suisse says that in times like these, when interest rates are especially low, investors often prefer the names on its “Stable Yields” list. However, these names have been underperforming thus far, suggesting a big rally is ahead.

Although it sounds too good to be true, Credit Suisse swears it has double-checked its list and refined it to a group of names that truly deserves “Stable Yield” status. Here are four such stocks to buy now:

  • Verizon (NYSE:VZ)
  • Merck (NYSE:MRK)
  • FirstEnergy (NYSE:FE)
  • Public Storage (NYSE:PSA)

The Best Stocks to Play America’s Recovery

[Wednesday, July 8, 10:13 a.m.]
Contributed by Louis Navellier and the InvestorPlace Research Staff

Last month’s job numbers were way better than expected…

And that’s a big sign we’re on the road to a significant recovery.

Stock prices may have taken a nosedive during the coronavirus market panic, but — financially speaking — there’s a silver lining to the market going through a bit of turmoil…

And that is, prices are artificially depressed. … Many stocks are trading for bargains.

Investors who position themselves well now have a high likelihood of seeing big gains as the country continues to open up.

But the big question is, “Which are the best stocks to play the coming recovery?”

Fortunately, you don’t have to guess.

I’ve programmed my stock-research system to sift and sort through all 5,000 stocks on the market and find which ones are poised to soar in just a few months.

In fact, I just identified several and they’re now part of my “buy list.”

To find out how to access the best stock recommendations and research for learning how to play the coming recovery … click here.

Stocks Open Slightly Higher Wednesday

[Wednesday, July 8, 9:31 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Perhaps nothing better illustrates the uncertainty in the stock market than Disney (NYSE:DIS). The company has been seriously hit by the novel coronavirus. Its theme parks and resorts are closed. Movie releases have been delayed. And there are no live sports to give its ESPN a boost. Now, despite rising coronavirus cases in Florida, it remains on track to reopen Disney World in Orlando.

Don’t think no one will go. According to the New York Times’ Brooks Barnes, there’s a fair bit of incredulity. There’s also a fair bit of excitement. Demand for parking reservations for the first few days of reopening crashed the online system.

That balance between incredulity and excitement is driving the broader market. Disney reopening gives us yet another sign recovery could be coming. But those on the incredulity side point to rising coronavirus cases, the United States’ lack of unified response to the pandemic and unemployment figures that even in July aren’t too pretty.

Whether you’re ready to take the family on a Disney vacation next month or not, keep the reopening in mind. As the S&P 500Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite all open slightly higher on Wednesday, it seems that bulls are taking the lead — at least for now.

  • The S&P 500 opened higher by 0.33%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average opened higher by 0.23%
  • The Nasdaq Composite opened higher by 0.63%

5 Cheap Dividend Stocks to Buy Now for Huge Yields

[Tuesday, July 7, 4:27 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

InvestorPlace’s Mark Hake isn’t going to jump on the bandwagon of just any stock. And looking around, it’s easy to see why. Sure, several investors have made a pretty penny rallying behind airlines, cruise operators and even bankrupt companies. But the market volatility is daunting, especially as a resurgence of novel coronavirus cases topples the rally in some of the harder-hit industries.

Fortunately, Hake has a handy solution for the market-induced whiplash. Instead of bracing yourself each day, focus on companies that are less vulnerable to volatility. And while you’re at it, look for companies that will reward you with steady dividends and high yields. You might not find companies returning 100%-plus gains in a month, but you can still find true growth potential.

If you’re looking to follow Hake’s advice, start with these five stocks:

  • Rent-A-Center (NASDAQ:RCII)
  • Jefferies Financial Group (NYSE:JEF)
  • Cardinal Health (NYSE:CAH)
  • Science Applications International Corporation (NYSE:SAIC)
  • Charles Schwab (NYSE:SCHW)

Stocks Close Down Tuesday Amid Pandemic Chaos

[Tuesday, July 7, 4:01 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Novel coronavirus cases continue to rise. Several major cities in the U.S. are pausing reopening plans, and some are considering renewed stay-at-home orders. Rallies in hard-hit industries like travel have stalled out. Oh, and President Donald Trump is looking to withdraw the U.S. from the World Health Organization. No wonder stocks are in the red today.

Unfortunately, the bulls just can’t fight the pandemic chaos. Cases continue to rise, and each sign of economic recovery is met with rebuttals. Good news from the vaccine world, like today’s announcement that Novavax (NASDAQ:NVAX) would receive $1.6 billion as part of Operation Warp Speed, is met with bad. Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation’s top infectious disease expert, is warning that a vaccine may not provide “permanent” protection or immunity. World leaders including Brazil’s Jair Bolsonaro — who is also a noted ally of Trump — are testing positive for Covid-19.

With a handful of companies slated to report later-stage vaccine results this summer, there are plenty of positive catalysts on the horizon. Until then, though, the bulls have quite the fight ahead of them. For now, the S&P 500Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite are closing down as the pandemic returns to center stage.

  • The S& 500 closed down by 1.08%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed down by 1.51%
  • The Nasdaq Composite closed down by 0.86%

Buy Microsoft Stock If Video Game Deals Pull Through

[Tuesday, July 7, 3:40 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

It’s been an interesting year for video game stocks. Investors came into 2020 with one big catalyst in mind — the launch of next-generation consoles from Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) and Sony (NYSE:SNE) just in time for the holiday shopping season. But the novel coronavirus provided an unexpected — and massive — boost to all sorts of names in the gaming space. On the back of that victory, rumor has it Microsoft is looking to make some new moves in the video game world.

So what’s the deal with video game stocks? Well, American consumers had more time than ever at home. Many were looking for new hobbies to keep busy, or turning to old hobbies to cope. Plus, as live sporting events shut down, many with a gambling-focused mindset turned to the world of esports, boosting interest in that offshoot. All together, gaming was attracting a ton of money, time and interest.

Amidst this, some names in tech have been looking to take advantage of the gaming boom. Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) chose the pandemic to launch its debut video game names. Other companies have been upping virtual and augmented reality capabilities. In fact, Microsoft just announced it would be shutting down its Mixer streaming platform (a competitor to Amazon’s Twitch) in favor of a partnership with Facebook’s (NASDAQ:FB) gaming unit. Hidden beneath the headline is the potential for VR support on Microsoft’s Xbox console. According to Venture Beat’s David Jagneux, this would be possible through Facebook’s Oculus technology.

That potential certainly has many in the gaming world excited. However, another set of rumors today is also sparking attention. Apparently, AT&T (NYSE:T) is looking to sell its Warner Brothers Interactive Entertainment unit for $4 billion. And guess who’s on the interested buyer list? Yep. Microsoft.

Interactive Entertainment comes with gaming titles like Mortal Kombat. But it also has several high-profile franchises. According to The Information’s Jessica Toonkel, such a move by Microsoft could greatly improve its ability to make games for the XboxPC Gamer’s Fraser Brown also speculates that the buyer would gain access to DC games. Adding that intellectual property to a list that includes Harry Potter, Game of Thrones and Lego gives this deal even more sparkle.

Keep a close eye on the rumors, especially to see if Microsoft is victorious in its move. Regardless, though, InvestorPlace’s Josh Enomoto sees MSFT stock as one of the top video game names to buy for the new normal. No matter what, it looks like a winning proposition.

Keep a Close Eye on the Upcoming DoorDash IPO

[Tuesday, July 7, 3:10 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Things are looking yummy for investors in the food delivery space. Yesterday we reported on Uber’s  (NYSE:UBER) big post-breakup move to acquire Postmates. Citing Wedbush analysts, we wrote that the deal made UBER stock a buy as competition in the space heats up. But there’s a private company that looks just as appealing for investors right now.

Like Postmates, DoorDash has long been a solid competitor to Uber and Grubhub (NYSE:GRUB). It bought up the Caviar platform and has continued to expand its network of partner restaurants. And according to InvestorPlace’s Tom Taulli, an initial public offering for DoorDash is likely just around the corner. That’s why he reviewed DoorDash stock yesterday, writing that DoorDash looks quite tasty.

So where does his confidence come from? Well, this has been a solid season for initial public offerings. Other tech-focused companies like Lemonade (NYSE:LMND) and Vroom (NASDAQ:VRM) stirred a lot of investor excitement. Plus, these IPOs have generally been a bullish indication of the stock market’s recovery. Perhaps that’s generated more excitement than usual over these debuts.

But there are other things about DoorDash that makes its upcoming IPO likely. As we reported yesterday, it recently confirmed that it raised $400 million in a Series H round. This new influx of cash brings its valuation to $16 billion. With this money in its pocket and big-time investors like T. Rowe Price and Fidelity Investments knocking on its door, that strengthens the case for a DoorDash IPO.

One more thing. As Uber grabs up Postmates and Europe’s Just Eat Takeaway (OTCMKTS:TKAYY) snatches up Grubhub, there is serious consolidation in the space. Food delivery has been hot in 2020 thanks to the novel coronavirus, and that consolidation pressure isn’t going away. As DoorDash continues to heat up its financial standing, keep a close eye on any IPO news. It’s a public debut you won’t want to miss.

10 Sports Stocks to Buy for a Return of Live Events

[Tuesday, July 7, 2:03 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Are you getting sick of game reruns and marble races yet?

If you answered yes, you wouldn’t be alone. In the early days of the novel coronavirus, the major sporting leagues moved one by one to halt live events and cancel tournaments. Even the Summer Olympics have been postponed to 2021. Now, after weeks of well, marble racing, the leagues are planning for a return. And according to InvestorPlace’s Vince Martin, this creates a huge opportunity in sports stocks.

Sure, seasons will look a little bit different. As Martin wrote, the NBA will finish its season in a “bubble” in Orlando, Florida, The MLB will play just a 60-game season. And several key athletes have already opted to sit out these unusual seasons.

But what matters is that, in some form, sports are coming back. Martin is convinced that like other hard-hit industries, investors have a real chance to rally behind companies that benefit from sports. That could be cable companies, athletic apparel companies or even companies that hold teams and famous venues. All will benefit from athletes coming out of quarantine.

So if you’re ready for start cheering on your favorite sports, here are 10 stocks to buy:

  • The Liberty Braves Group (NASDAQ:BATRA, NASDAQ:BATRK)
  • Madison Square Garden Sports (NYSE:MSGS)
  • MSG Networks (NYSE:MSGN)
  • Manchester United (NYSE:MANU)
  • Nike (NYSE:NKE)
  • Dover Motorsports (NYSE:DVD)
  • Disney (NYSE:DIS)
  • Comcast (NASDAQ:CMCSA)
  • World Wrestling Entertainment (NYSE:WWE)
  • Churchill Downs (NASDAQ:CHDN)

Why Was This Totally Off the Radar for 99.9% of Investors?

[Tuesday, July 7, 10:50 a.m.]
Contributed by Eric Fry and the InvestorPlace Research Staff

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Stocks Slump Tuesday as Market Magic Fades

[Tuesday, July 7, 9:31 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

It looks like the bad news is finally catching up with the bulls. Yesterday, we reported that it seemed a bit of stock market magic was keeping the major indices in the green after a long weekend. Now though, that magic is gone. Stocks are opening down Tuesday as investors process a group of worrisome headlines.

Novel coronavirus cases are on the rise again, as Florida and Texas continue to struggle with record amounts of new cases. Tuesday, investors learned that Arizona has also become a hotspot. More and more states are falling into this nasty resurgence, and it’s real cause for concern. According to Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation’s leading infectious disease expert, warned that the United States is “knee-deep” in the first wave of the virus. He’s also taking a jab at the bulls, warning that a vaccine for the coronavirus may not offer permanent protection.

Anything that questions the strength of a vaccine really rocks the bull case right now. Investors have been rallying behind hard-hit industries like airlines and cruises because a vaccine should bring back normal. If it can’t, what will hold up the stock market?

For now, that’s a question that can’t be answered. With grey skies on Wall Street, the S&P 500Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite are in the red.

  • The S&P 500 opened lower by 0.53%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average opened lower by 0.69%
  • The Nasdaq Composite opened lower by 0.21%

3 Foolproof Bank Stocks to Buy for Big Profits

[Monday, July 6, 4:35 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Bank stocks are never particularly sexy, but they’ve had an even rougher-than-usual time so far in 2020. Fearing a replay of the 2007-08 financial crisis, investors sold them off early on in March. This move discounted the regulatory efforts brought about in a post-crisis world, and the solid balance sheets many big banks currently have.

Although he doesn’t think bank stocks can maintain a radical rally, InvestorPlace’s Nicolas Chahine wrote today that it’s time for investors to get bullish on certain bank names. Why? They haven’t recovered as much as the S&P 500. Plus, they recently passed their stress tests, and are plenty strong. Chahine sees these names as a play for 2021 — buy now, and expect big profits later.

Here are the three names he’s recommending right now:

  • JPMorgan Chase (NYSE:JPM)
  • Wells Fargo (NYSE:WFC)
  • Financial Select Sector SPDR Fund (NYSEARCA:XLF)

Market Magic Sends Stocks Higher to Close Out Monday

[Monday, July 6, 4:01 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Who needs Cinderella’s castle or the Harry Potter franchise when you have the stock market? That’s right, the magic of bullish investors is more powerful than any wizardry, witchcraft or fairy godmother. If you don’t believe me, just look at the price action in the major indices today. The Dow Jones Industrial Average added more than 400 points as the World Health Organization declared a new record of novel coronavirus cases.

With a flick of a wand, a little bit of reopening rally dust and a long weekend behind them, bulls kept stocks in the green today. But why? Miami is joining certain Texas cities in pausing reopening plans. Elsewhere, Americans are torn between staying safe at home and embracing the new normal, with or without face masks.

Perhaps the confidence comes from the determination shared by many officials to avoid stay-at-home orders and other economy-threatening moves. So far, the rise in cases has been met with panic, but reopening continues across the U.S. Will that change? And if it doesn’t, how far can this rally go?

Unfortunately, no one knows. For now though, the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq Composite are joining the Dow in the green.

  • The S&P 500 closed higher by 1.59%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed higher by 1.78%
  • The Nasdaq Composite closed higher by 2.21%

Uber Stock Is a Buy on Postmates Deal

[Monday, July 6, 3:10 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

It takes some people years to recover after being left at the altar, but Uber (NYSE:UBER) was ready for a rebound in just a matter of weeks. According to Bloomberg’s Eric Newcomer, Liana Baker and Katie Roof, the ride-hailing company agreed to buy Postmates for $2.65 billion. This news comes not long after rumors that Uber was looking for a similar tie-up with Grubhub (NYSE:GRUB). Unfortunately, GRUB had some reservations, choosing instead to go with Just Eat Takeaway (OTCMKTS:TKAYY).

So what’s the rush in the food delivery space? Just like those young adult years where you realize all your friends are getting married and having kids, Uber realized it was running out of time as the competition heated up. The novel coronavirus dealt the ride-hailing company a harsh blow. A pandemic, it turns out, really lowers the appeal of sharing cars with strangers. Thankfully, rival Lyft (NASDAQ:LYFT) found itself in a similar spot.

As its main business sunk, Uber turned to its Uber Eats food delivery service. Facing competition from Grubhub, Postmates, DoorDash and Caviar, there was pressure for consolidation. Private competitors like Postmates and DoorDash have been looking to raise money. Plus, local and state governments have been chipping away at profits, setting fee limits and siding with restaurants.

Grubhub’s rejection stung, but Wedbush analysts think this is the “right acquisition at the right time.” Perhaps Uber and Postmates are food delivery soulmates? For Uber, the deal gives the company a leg up against the competition. Plus, the team thinks this deal is less likely to attract antitrust scrutiny. All in all, it looks like Uber is set to benefit from this well-time acquisition. That’s why the analysts have an “outperform” rating on UBER stock and a price target of $47. At the time of their note, shares traded hands for just over $30.

As novel coronavirus cases continue to rise across the United States, food delivery will remain crucial. Plus, with improved market share through Postmates, its post-pandemic future will be bright. Order yourself a mid-afternoon snack and buy UBER stock now.

5 Electric Car Stocks to Buy as Buffett Turns Bullish

[Monday, July 6, 2:04 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Just a few weeks ago, Warren Buffett put a serious damper on the market. He maintained that his Berkshire Hathaway (NYSE:BRK.A, NYSE:BRK.B) would mostly stay conservative, in order to protect shareholders’ money. Combine that with his decision to sell off airline stocks, and investors had a case for the apocalypse. But that all is changing Monday after Buffett moved to buy Dominion’s (NYSE:D) natural gas transmission and storage assets.

According to CNBC’s Yun Li, Berkshire is spending $4 billion for the assets, and is also agreeing to take on $5.7 billion in debt (subscription required). It’s the conglomerate’s first purchase since the onset of the novel coronavirus. Broadly, Dominion shareholders aren’t happy with the news, as D stock sinks 10% today. But many analysts see Buffett’s move as a bullish indicator for one big, accelerating trend.

Rob Raymond, founder of RCH Energy, told CNBC that this deal is evidence Buffett is a fan of electric cars and the electrification megatrend. How? Electric cars will raise the demand for natural gas that goes through power plants. Buffett’s move ups his — and Berkshire Hathaway’s — stake in that trend.

If you are a long-time fan of the Oracle of Omaha, or are similarly bullish on electric car stocks, InvestorPlace Markets Analyst Luke Lango has five top recommendations. Lango is betting that over the next decade, electric cars will gain popularity and market share. His picks all stand to benefit from that prediction — and they represent leaders in the growing industry.

Here’s what he’s recommending right now:

  • Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA)
  • Nio (NYSE:NIO)
  • Nikola Motors (NASDAQ:NKLA)
  • Arcimoto (NASDAQ:FUV)
  • Kandi Technologies (NASDAQ:KNDI)

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[Monday, July 6, 10:50 a.m.]
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Stocks Open Higher Monday Despite Troubling News

[Monday, July 6, 9:31 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

As the major indices charge higher Monday morning, it’s almost as if Wall Street is getting its own personal fireworks show. But it’s not. In fact, there’s seemingly little logic behind the morning’s rally higher, except that investors are ready to believe in the reopening catalyst once again.

So what should be dragging stocks down? Well, novel coronavirus cases continue to rise across the U.S. Some cities in Texas are considering renewed stay-at-home orders. Florida is struggling to use contact tracing to mitigate new cases. Analysts at Goldman Sachs just lowered their U.S. GDP forecast, calling for a 4.6% contraction in 2020. Oh, and if that wasn’t enough, many experts are saying the second-quarter earnings season will be the “ugliest earnings season since the financial crisis.” Sign me up.

Warm weather and fireworks provided a little bit of market magic going into the weekend, but will that continue today? Investors should keep a close eye on this week’s look at initial unemployment claims as well as pandemic projections. If more states join Texas in debating new stay-at-home orders, stocks could take a dive — straight into the swimming pool’s deep end.

For now though, the metaphorical sun is shining and the S&P 500Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite are all in the green.

  • The S&P 500 opened higher by 1.37%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average opened higher by 1.41%
  • The Nasdaq Composite opened higher by 1.51%

Stocks Close Higher Thursday Ahead of Holiday Weekend

[Thursday, July 2, 4:01 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Let’s start with the big news. The stock market is closed tomorrow! That means we’ll see you back here bright and early on Monday.

Thankfully, we’re sending you off on a good note. The U.S. Department of Labor’s jobs report this morning beat expectations, showing the economy added almost 5 million jobs in June. That comes after yesterday’s update from ADP, showing that private payrolls added 2.3 million jobs in the same period. For now, it looks like signs of economic recovery are influencing the market more than fears of rising novel coronavirus cases and renewed lockdowns.

Perhaps after the three-day weekend, the glow will fade from the stock market. But for now, as investors get ready to watch virtual fireworks shows and enjoy social-distancing barbeques, the S&P 500Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite are all in the green.

  • The S&P 500 closed higher by 0.46%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed higher by 0.36%
  • The Nasdaq Composite closed higher by 0.52%

As always, be safe, wear a mask, and don’t miss our daily stock market updates too much!

3 Media Stocks to Buy Now as Network Ratings Soar

[Thursday, July 2, 3:34 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

If you’re looking for a modern-day rendition of Billy Joel’s “We Didn’t Start the Fire,” just turn on the news. Don’t see what I mean? Allegations are swirling that Russia offered Taliban-linked militants bounties to target coalition forces in Afghanistan. Reports of flying snakes are circulating. Novel coronavirus cases continue to rise. And the world is now reckoning with centuries of racism.

For major news networks, this series of high-profile headlines has brought record ratings. Yesterday, AP News’ David Bauder reported that after 40 years, CNN hit a record. In other words, its audience over the last three-month period was larger than ever before. The prime-time audience of 1.95 million was up 120% year-over-year. And now CNN is looking to reach more people than ever, taking popular anchors to weekend and late-night slots.

What does this mean for investors? Well, through a complicated business setup, AT&T (NYSE:T) owns CNN. That makes AT&T stock a great buy right now.

And it also bodes well for the owners of other top networks. As Axios’ Mike Allen wrote this morning, Fox News and MSNBC are also seeing major spikes in viewers. In the same period, Fox saw a 43% jump in audience and MSNBC saw a 13% jump. Once again, this translates to Fox Corporation (NASDAQ:FOX, NASDAQ:FOXA) and Comcast (NASDAQ:CMCSA) being great stocks to buy. These media networks — whether you love them or hate them — are increasingly relevant.

There’s also no need to worry yet about shrinking audiences. As Americans brace for November’s presidential election, there will be more eyes than ever on TV. That’s especially true as former Vice President Joe Biden and President Donald Trump turn to the digital world for their campaigns.

Can Trendy Apartments Save Mall REITs?

[Thursday, July 2, 2:27 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Consumers are trying on makeup products through augmented reality filters. Other shoppers, fearing the novel coronavirus, are readying themselves for virtual dressing rooms. This is the retail of the future, backed by mobile shopping apps, digital-first approaches and above all, strong e-commerce strategies. Unfortunately for mall operators like Simon Property Group (NYSE:SPG) and Brookfield (NASDAQ:BPY), this looks like the end of traditional shopping malls.

You can blame Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) or you can blame the pandemic. You can even blame the pandemic for worsening the crisis Amazon started. But consumers prioritize convenience, tech and a “personal” experience when it comes to making purchases. Retailers that got ahead of the curve are doing quite well, while we’ve seen other names like Gap (NYSE:GPS) and Francesca’s (NASDAQ:FRAN) race to pivot.

Is there anything these mall operators can do? As Morning Brew’s Halie LeSavage wrote, Brookfield is now embracing the tech revolution, bringing in virtual dressing rooms and 3D body-scanning kiosks. That will help mitigate coronavirus risks as malls reopen. But it still requires Brookfield to get shoppers into its dying malls.

That’s where new reporting from Bloomberg’s Patrick Sisson comes in. And apparently, there actually is a source of hope for mall REITs and the bullish investors behind them. If you want to attract shoppers, make sure they live super close to the mall. Like, maybe even in the mall. According to Sisson, that’s exactly what is happening in Seattle, as Brookfield moves to partner with AvalonBay Communities (NYSE:AVB). The duo will create a mix of trendy apartment-style housing, brick-and-mortar retail and community space.

Granted, this solution won’t work for every mall. But at a time when some are calling for all malls to disappear, this gives REITs, especially those with malls in more in-demand locations, a reason for optimism. And for what it’s worth, InvestorPlace’s David Moadel recently recommended AVB stock.

7 International Stocks to Buy as the World Recovers

[Thursday, July 2, 1:17 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Citing China’s relative success in mitigating the novel coronavirus, InvestorPlace’s Chris Lau is betting on international stocks for the rest of 2020. Unfortunately, the United States isn’t having the same luck as many of its global peers — nor is it following the same pandemic strategy. As Lau writes, that means, as we are seeing unfold now, the U.S. will struggle to reopen.

Recognizing the potential in these quicker-to-reopen countries, Lau recommends adding geographic diversity to your portfolio. But if you’re new to that line of thinking, there are risks. For starters, Lau highlights the complications of currency exchange. But you can still get exposure to top global companies through conglomerates.

If you’re dreading the rise in Covid-19 cases, follow Lau’s advice. Start with these seven companies:

  • Unilever (NYSE:UL)
  • Procter & Gamble (NYSE:PG)
  • Alibaba (NYSE:BABA)
  • Coca-Cola (NYSE:KO)
  • Toyota Motor (NYSE:TM)
  • Kimberly-Clark (NYSE:KMB)
  • AstraZeneca (NYSE:AZN)

Francesca’s Stock Pops 60% on Mobile App News

[Thursday, July 2, 12:54 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

The retail apocalypse may be coming, but a handful of brick-and-mortar retailers are racing to survive. Last week we saw a crazy pop in Gap (NYSE:GAP) on news the mall-based name would partner with Kanye West’s Yeezy fashion company. Now, Francesca’s (NASDAQ:FRAN), a so-called specialty retailer with an “upscale boutique” feel, is seeing its stock pop 60% in intraday trading.

What’s the catalyst? Well, after malls closed around the United States, Francesca’s saw an uptick in e-commerce sales. The company, recognizing that digital is the future, announced today that it will work to develop a mobile app. From CEO Andrew Clarke:

“During the temporary store closure period resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic, our ecommerce business surged. Given the accelerating shift to online shopping, we are excited to be stepping up our digital transformation strategy with the launch of this mobile app. In addition to enhancing her online shopping experience, the app will provide valuable insights into how customers interact with our brand, enabling us to interact with her in a more relevant and impactful way.”

Francesca’s app should be able on Apple’s (NASDAQ:AAPL) platform before the end of the summer, and on the corresponding Alphabet (NASDAQ:GOOG, NASDAQ:GOOGL) Android platform before the holiday season. This could help Francesca’s take advantage of Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales as well. And importantly, it shows that the retailer recognizes its positioning in a world where e-commerce and convenience win.

But Footwear News’ Ella Chochrek highlighted this morning that Francesca’s faces a steep uphill climb. The retailer got close to bankruptcy amid the novel coronavirus pandemic, alerting shareholders it had “significant doubt about its ability to continue as a going concern.” Plus, it skipped rent payments for three months, furloughed the majority of its employees and reduced executive pay.

In short, it’s a hard time to be a retailer. Investors are likely rallying behind FRAN stock because, like with GPS shares, it’s important to reward companies when they embrace accelerating trends. With a shift toward digital and a distinct aesthetic, today’s news might mean Francesca’s can survive the apocalypse. It’s certainly not a retailer to ignore in the near future.

3 Furniture Stocks to Buy for WFH Comfort

[Thursday, July 2, 11:35 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

I’m sure my work-from-home journey is relatable. In the last few months, I’ve called a beach towel on my concrete patio a desk. Same goes for my coffee table, a plastic storage container I’m using as a nightstand and my kitchen bar stool. Really, whatever works.

InvestorPlace’s Tezcan Gecgil took stock of the situation, realizing that although a few Americans are returning to the office, many are prepping for indefinite periods of working from home. Plus, there are companies like Twitter (NYSE:TWTR) moving to a “WFH forever” model. Makeshift desks only work for so long. With that in mind, Gecgil is betting that furniture companies are going to attract a ton of consumer demand. And with increased consumer demand comes big share-price gains.

Beyond furniture designed for work-from-home needs, Gecgil also took a look at anything that could make long periods inside more comfortable. Do you want a more comfortable mattress? What about a better sofa for long hours binge-watching Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX)?

If you want to ride this work-from-home wave, here are Gecgil’s top recommendations:

  • La-Z-Boy (NYSE:LZB)
  • Sleep Number (NASDAQ:SNBR)

A New Battery Could Dismantle the $75 Trillion Oil Markets

[Thursday, July 2, 10:52 a.m.]
Contributed by Andrew Taylor

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Stocks Open Higher Thursday as Unemployment Shrinks

[Thursday, July 2, 9:31 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Boy, what a morning! Investors have a lot to cheer about today, and not even this morning’s update on initial jobless claims can bring the major indices down. For starters, it’s nice to know that tomorrow’s a holiday. With a three-day weekend ahead, bulls are looking for an early third-quarter victory.

So what’s driving the market? Perhaps the biggest piece of news is the jobs report from the U.S. Department of Labor. The economy added 4.8 million jobs in June, bringing the overall unemployment rate down from 13.3% to 11.1%. That’s good news on its own. But according to the Axios staff, the report also beat expectations. Experts were calling for the economy to add just 3 million jobs, which would have brought the unemployment rate to 12.5%.

However, looking at this morning’s initial jobless claims report, it’s important to note that the update was worse than expectations. Investors learned that another 1.43 million Americans filed for unemployment benefits last week, while experts were predicting a figure around 1.38 million. Although it’s not the most drastic miss, this week marks 15 consecutive weeks of figures above 1 million.

In other words, the picture we’re painting of recovery is far from flawless. As the third quarter progresses, these economic reports should hopefully improve. But as novel coronavirus cases continue to rise, there’s a lot to watch. For now, the S&P 500Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite are all in the green.

  • The S&P 500 opened higher by 1.18%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average opened higher by 1.47%
  • The Nasdaq Composite opened higher by 0.95%

Stocks Close Higher Wednesday to Kick Off Q3

[Wednesday, July 1, 4:01 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Investors clearly didn’t want to start off the third quarter on a rough note. That means the major indices are closing higher Wednesday, despite this morning’s payroll miss and the looming initial jobless claims report. Perhaps the combination of a clean slate and a long weekend ahead will boost the stock market tomorrow as well.

Beyond the payroll reports miss — which still showed private employers adding more than 2 million new jobs in June — it was a lot of novel coronavirus news driving trading. Cases continue to rise around the United States, and officials are struggling to balance public health concerns with the economy. At the same time, good news from Pfizer (NYSE:PFE) and BioNTech (NASDAQ:BNTX) is giving bulls something to cheer over. Pfizer’s CEO even thinks the vaccine candidate could be ready for launch in October 2020. Wouldn’t that be nice?

For now, Q3 is looking good. The S&P 500 and the Nasdaq Composite are closing in the green. Unfortunately, the Dow Jones Industrial Average wasn’t so lucky.

  • The S&P 500 closed higher by 0.5%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed lower by 0.3%
  • The Nasdaq Composite closed higher by 0.95%

T2 Biosystems Stock Climbs 26% on New Coronavirus Test

[Wednesday, July 1, 3:42 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

T2 Biosystems (NASDAQ:TTOO) is looking to benefit from pandemic uncertainties. Right now, the U.S. is dealing with a record spike in novel coronavirus cases. But at the same time, many organizations, schools and workplaces are preparing to move forward with reopening plans. Both parts of this reality require an uptick and testing, a new swab from T2 can help with just that.

What exactly is T2 Biosystems? Well, Massachusetts-based company focuses on making test kits for all sorts of bacteria and fungi. These panels look for sepsis-causing pathogens in whole blood — meaning healthcare professionals don’t have to rely on blood cultures. And the perk? The tests deliver results super quickly. According to a company press release, T2 Biosystems’ standard tests deliver results in less than five hours. A blood culture would take several days to provide results.

Why does this matter? Well, in the company’s own words, it helps patients get on the right treatment faster, improves treatment outcomes and reduces costs. Instead of waiting several days for test results — and letting patients get even sicker with time — the company’s tests can give hospitals a jump start on different treatments.

This is extremely important with the novel coronavirus, and that’s why TTOO is having such a hot day. The company announced it had received emergency-use authorization from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for its T2SARS-CoV-2 Panel, a test that relies on its same diagnostic technology. All healthcare workers need from the patient is a nasopharyngeal swab sample, and results should be ready in two hours. Plus, especially amid rising concerns over test kit accuracy, it’s good to know that this new test has a 95% sensitivity score and a 100% specificity score.

TTOO stock is up 26% in intraday trading on the news, but it’s important to remember that T2 Biosystems is a small company. Even after the rally, shares are still under $2. That doesn’t mean there’s no potential here, but investors should be cautious while pursuing this test kit victory.

7 Utility Stocks to Buy for a Mix of Yield and Safety

[Wednesday, July 1, 1:55 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

As InvestorPlace’s Thomas Niel makes very clear, it’s an odd time to be an investor. Some are chasing hard-hit names like American Airlines (NASDAQ:AAL) and Carnival (NYSE:CCL), hoping for a big rebound as the U.S. economy reopens. Others are staying safe, rallying up tech giants to all-time highs. But is either really a good strategy right now? What about the resurgence in novel coronavirus cases — should that be influencing your approach?

Niel is doubtful that either is the perfect way to invest now, and he’s also keeping a close eye on the pandemic. That’s why instead of rushing to buy the dip or chase already lofty name higher, he’s looking at utility stocks. OK, hear him out. Utility stocks combine high dividend yields with low volatility.

If you’re looking for 100%-plus gains, these stocks likely aren’t for you. But if you’re looking for a spot in the stock market that’s “just right,” Niel’s advice makes sense. Here’s what he is recommending now:

  • Consolidated Edison (NYSE:ED)
  • Dominion Energy (NYSE:D)
  • Duke Energy (NYSE:DUK)
  • Edison International (NYSE:EIX)
  • Exelon Corporation (NASDAQ:EXC)
  • PPL Corporation (NYSE:PPL)
  • The Southern Company (NYSE:SO)

Pfizer and BioNTech Stock Pop on Vaccine News

[Wednesday, July 1, 1:21 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Today, Pfizer (NYSE:PFE) and BioNTech (NASDAQ:BNTX) reported results from a Phase 1 vaccine trial. And unlike what we saw yesterday with Inovio Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:INO), the market is rewarding PFE and BNTX. Both stocks are up more than 5% in intraday trading.

The biggest difference is the level of specificity in the report. In general, both reports were positive, and are leading to further stages of human trials. Plus, both vaccine candidates have received spots in President Donald Trump’s Operation Warp Speed program. But Pfizer and BioNTech went into greater detail about the doses they studied, the immune response triggered and the next steps for human trials.

Here are details on the Phase 1 trial, via STAT’s Matthew Herper:

“The study randomly assigned 45 patients to get one of three doses of the vaccine or placebo. Twelve received a 10-microgram dose, 12 a 30-microgram dose, 12 a 100-microgram dose, and nine a placebo. The 100-microgram dose caused fevers in half of patients; a second dose was not given at that level.”

Essentially, the low and medium doses passed the “safety” portions of the Phase 1 trial. In terms of the vaccine candidate’s ability to trigger an immune response, BioPharma Dive’s Ned Pagliarulo reported both lower doses produced antibodies that were capable of neutralizing the novel coronavirus. Additionally, the antibodies were able to neutralize the virus at levels two to three times higher than what researchers have seen in recovered Covid-19 patients.

Herper and Pagliarulo both stress that there are several more steps that the duo needs to take, but at least the initial data looks good. Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla hopes to have the vaccine ready by October 2020, and the pair estimate they can produce 100 million doses by the end of the year. That estimate jumps for 2021 — up to 1.2 billion doses.

Pfizer and BioNTech have checked all the boxes so far, and Wall Street is rewarding them. Keep a close eye on the pair, you don’t want to miss out on vaccine victory.

Buy Klarna for Pandemic Potential in the Private Markets

[Wednesday, July 1, 11:30 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Many shoppers have likely found themselves with a whole lot of time on their hands and not a whole lot of money to spend. But that consumer urge is still there. Yeah, that urge for instant gratification. You see a pair of shoes, a shirt or even a new coffee table. You immediately want the item in question, and you don’t want to wait.

That’s where Klarna comes in. Like Australian Afterpay (OTCMKTS:AFTPY), which we have recommended in this blog, Klarna is all about the “buy now, pay later” model. And although it’s not publicly traded, InvestorPlace’s Robert Lakin took a deep dive yesterday into how investors can still buy Klarna stock.

Klarna is a solid company with a solid business model. Plus, the appeal of buy now, pay later services is likely accelerating thanks to the novel coronavirus. Interest-free payment installments promise instant gratification without the heartache. As Lakin details, Klarna pays the retailers upfront, collecting emails and ZIP codes from customers. From there, customers can choose to pay now, in 30 days, in four interest-free payments or across six to 36 months with interest.

That way, you can get the table you want from IKEA without worrying when your next paycheck is coming. In fact, IKEA is actually one of the more than 200,000 retail partners that Klarna works with. Other names include Expedia (NASDAQ:EXPE), Peloton (NASDAQ:PTON) and Abercrombie & Fitch (NYSE:ANF).

If you’re rolling your eyes at the buy now, pay later concept, Lakin has an important reminder. Sure, millennials love it, but it’s not exactly a new idea. Retailers have embraced payment installments for ages, and Klarna is just bringing the concept into the modern world. Plus, e-commerce adoption is rapidly accelerating. Klarna and its peers stand to benefit from megatrends in retail, financial services and fintech. That’s why Lakin called it the “trifecta of disruption.”

Although publicly traded Afterpay is also an excellent bet, there’s a great reason to consider Klarna stock here as well. It is in a Series E funding round, and next steps are likely an initial public offering or some sort of takeover deal. In either situation, early shareholders will benefit. As with other private investing opportunities, there are risks here. But if you do your own research and use caution, there’s also a whole lot of pandemic potential.

9 Minutes, 12 Seconds Could Make You $2,475 Upfront

[Wednesday, July 1, 10:19 a.m.]
Contributed by Andrew Taylor

We recently put together a short video to show you a powerful trading strategy you’ve probably never considered.

It won’t take much time to watch — just 9 minutes, 12 seconds.

This strategy, as you’ll see, is the best and lowest-risk way to “accelerate” an investment account.

It has nothing to do with buying risky stocks … buying options … or taking a flyer on some “hot tip.”

Instead, it’s a way you can receive instant cash upfront — anywhere from $240 to $2,475 per trade — every single time you perform one simple transaction in a brokerage account.

This incredible moneymaking potential is why Barron’s calls this “one of the greatest strategies in existence.”

Before we take it offline, watch this short nine-minute video for the full story.

Stocks Open Higher Wednesday Despite ADP Payroll Miss

[Wednesday, July 1, 9:31 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

We’re starting to see signs of economic recovery, but it’s not enough for many investors. That’s especially true as cases of the novel coronavirus continue to rise, leading to renewed lockdowns — and panic — across the United States.

On Wednesday, this phenomenon appeared in the ADP payroll report. As Yahoo Finance’s Emily McCormick and Javier David wrote, ADP showed the market this morning that private employers added 2.37 million jobs in June. That’s up from a loss of 3 million jobs in May. It should be great news, but it’s not enough. Investors have been waiting since early March to see more meaningful signs of recovery, and each slow-but-steady update wears away at hopes for a V-shaped bounce. Plus, economists were calling for 2.95 million jobs to be added in June.

Remember, we’ll also have our weekly look at initial jobless claims tomorrow. Will that number finally start to show significant improvement?

Unfortunately, this morning’s lackluster news has the third quarter off to an equally lackluster start. The S&P 500Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite are in the green, but just barely.

  • The S&P 500 opened higher by 0.18%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average opened higher by 0.24%
  • The Nasdaq Composite opened higher by 0.05%

Stocks Close Higher Tuesday and Q2 Comes to an End

[Tuesday, June 30, 4:09 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Boy, what a quarter. We’ve seen a global pandemic, unprecedented unemployment levels and all sorts of innovation driven by the novel coronavirus. We have also had an opportunity to watch competing forces drive the market up and down. Now, at the end of the second quarter, we face a rise in coronavirus cases and a strong push to reopen the U.S. economy. What will play out in the next few months?

Today, it’s clear bulls wanted to end the quarter on a high note. The major indices are all up on the day, as investors try to balance pandemic warnings from Dr. Anthony Fauci with stimulus promises from Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin. It’s likely the third quarter will see much of the same action in the stock market, and who knows what else it will bring.

For now, the S&P 500Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite are all in the green.

  • The S&P 500 closed higher by 1.53%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed higher by 0.84%
  • The Nasdaq Composite closed higher by 1.87%

This Is the Secret to Eric’s 10x Gains…

[Tuesday, June 30, 3:35 p.m.]
Contributed by 
Andrew Taylor

We recently convinced InvestorPlace analyst Eric Fry to reveal the secret to his extraordinary success.

It’s a pattern he discovered 30 years ago, almost by accident.

He calls it, simply, the “PRO System.”

It’s the culmination of a long career that’s taken him from San Francisco to Monte Carlo to Wall Street … and back to California, where he no longer has to head to an office every morning.

Using his proprietary “PRO System,” he’s identified the chance to pinpoint stocks in the early stages of a major advance, time and time again … and lock in the biggest possible gains.

Just take a look at some of these gains:

  • 5,075% on Ericsson Telecom
  • 1,543% on Sturm, Ruger
  • 1,028% on Service Corp.
  • 1,307% on Foster’s Brewing Group
  • 2,045% on BHP
  • 1,622% on Adidas
  • 2,277% on Agnico Eagle Mines
  •  7,908% on Australia and New Zealand Bank
  • And 11,237% on Royal Garden Resorts

In an industry where you’re fortunate to find just one 1,000%-plus gainer, Eric has found 41 of them.

Now, he’s going to show you exactly how he does it in this InvestorPlace exclusive.

He’ll even give away one of his favorite recommendation right now — including the name and ticker symbol, absolutely free — just for tuning in.

Before this goes offline again, get the details here.

Don’t Count Inovio Stock Out of the Vaccine Race Yet

[Tuesday, June 30, 3:08 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Inovio Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:INO) made a big announcement Tuesday, but instead of leading a rally, the news has shares down 23% in intraday trading. The fall comes as investors struggle to balance a deep desire for novel coronavirus vaccine updates with stricter guidance from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Does this new guidance discount Inovio’s success?

Let’s take a closer look at what’s going on. This morning, Inovio published a press release detailing how a Phase 1 trial of its INO-4800 vaccine candidate met positive results. According to the report, 94% of trial participants demonstrated an immune response to the vaccine. The purpose of these early trials is to test whether a vaccine candidate is safe and effective — does it trigger any immune response? With these new results, Inovio says it will release more details in a peer-reviewed study and soon begin Phase 2 trials.

Additionally, the company announced its vaccine candidate had been selected for President Donald Trump’s Operation Warp Speed.

Sure, this is all good news. But good news typically doesn’t send a stock on a 20%-plus decline.

Reading between the lines, BioPharma Dive’s Jonathan Gardner highlight how many details are missing from the report. What was the level of immune response to the vaccine? What type of immune response was it? And how does the response in trial participants compare to that of Covid-19 survivors? These questions are causing many to doubt Inovio.

Then, factor in a new report from the FDA. The group released new guidance. Now, to meet the primary efficacy endpoint in a clinical trial, a company must show that its treatment reduces risk of disease by Covid-19 by 50%. Investors likely don’t want to support a dangerous treatment, but it is a blow of caution and realism that counters any sort of reopening rally. Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation’s leading infectious disease expert, has also said that there’s no guarantee of a safe and effective vaccine.

Today then is likely a result of investors backpedaling their bullishness on Inovio and its peers. And yes, investors should keep a close eye on the company to see if it releases meatier data. If it does, INO stock still can be a winner on a coronavirus vaccine rally.

7 Healthcare Stocks to Buy for Pandemic Recovery

[Tuesday, June 30, 1:50 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Everyone’s totally happy with the healthcare system in the United States, right? Oh wait.

Beyond thrusting the world into a state of panic, the novel coronavirus has highlighted a lot of flaws in the healthcare system — but it’s also been accelerating change. Just as the pandemic has raised conversations about insurance, healthcare costs, drug pricing and racial disparities in health outcomes, it has also accelerated adoption of telemedicine and shown the potential of next-generation R&D.

In fact, it’s this combination that has InvestorPlace’s Ian Bezek bullish on the healthcare space. He wrote today that it’s “painfully clear” we need more investment, innovation and modernization. Plus, as the national consensus supports such innovation, other fears are now in the rear-view mirror. For instance, some investors spent the early months of 2020 fretting what would happen if Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders won the election in November. Now that former Vice President Joe Biden has secured the Democratic ticket, Bezek is hopeful for an outcome that solves healthcare’s challenges while still supporting a future of development.

With that in mind, here are seven healthcare stocks he’s recommending now:

  • Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL)
  • Teladoc (NYSE:TDOC)
  • Novo Nordisk (NYSE:NVO)
  • Stryker (NYSE:SYK)
  • Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ)
  • Ventas (NYSE:VTR)
  • HCA Healthcare (NYSE:HCA)

Lululemon Stock Is a Buy After Mirror Acquisition

[Tuesday, June 30, 11:19 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Lululemon (NASDAQ:LULU) has long been a favorite of investors. There’s serious brand appeal behind its pricey leggings and other athleisure apparel, and the company has a great sales model. That’s why InvestorPlace analyst Matt McCall wrote earlier in June that LULU stock was a buy — and that the company would thrive — regardless of woes from the novel coronavirus.

And today, it’s clear Lululemon doesn’t want to let its fans down. The company announced it would acquire home fitness startup Mirror for $500 million. That news has LULU stock up 5.3% in intraday trading.

So what exactly is Mirror? Think aesthetically pleasing mirror, but the home fitness version. In the company’s own words, it’s the “nearly invisible home gym.” Essentially, the connected screen comes with all sorts of workouts, customizable playlists and a wall mount that helps it easily blend into your living space. On the startup’s website, it retails for just under $1,500.

This all matters today because of the at-home workout push. We saw consumers start panic-buying Peloton (NASDAQ:PTON) bikes, and any apps that focused on running or at-home fitness plans saw record downloads. During the peak of the novel coronavirus pandemic, this made PTON stock a star.

Now, it looks like Lululemon is entering the fitness tech space in a big way. Consumers already love Lululemon’s clothing, and the Mirror devices appear to complement the athleisure aesthetic well. Plus, as TechCrunch’s Brian Heater noted this morning, the two companies have a long history of working together, and Mirror already has a reputation for rivaling Peloton.

Although it’s unclear exactly what the fitness world will look like as the U.S. continues to reopen, many experts agree at-home fitness isn’t disappearing. Even if the Mirror acquisition doesn’t help Lululemon live the dream “sweatlife,” LULU stock is still a great name to buy.

Buy the GERM ETF for a Basket of Coronavirus Stocks

[Tuesday, June 30, 10:47 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

There’s an exciting new fund on Wall Street, and it’s perfect for investors looking to ride the novel coronavirus catalyst. The ETFMG Treatments Testing and Advancements ETF (NYSEARCA:GERM) gives investors direct exposure to biotech companies that specialize in infectious diseases. And right now, that means many of its top holdings are geared toward Covid-19.

As InvestorPlace’s Todd Shriber recently highlighted, this exchange-traded fund isn’t exclusively a coronavirus ETF. However, it’s the first of its kind, and it’s a pretty good bet right now. It comes with an expense ratio of 0.68%, or $68 on an initial $10,000 investment, and the index it follows accounts for disease treatments and vaccines as well as diagnostic advancements.

With the coronavirus in mind, that means some of its top holdings are stars in the vaccine race. You’ll find Inovio Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:INO), Moderna (NASDAQ:MRNA) and Novavax  (NASDAQ:NVAX). You’ll also get exposure to Pfizer’s (NYSE:PFE) partnership with BioNTech (NASDAQ:BNTX) through shares of the latter.

Elsewhere in the world of infectious diseases — and the unfortunate world of the coronavirus — there are key diagnostic and test kit companies. Two of those names, Quest Diagnostics (NYSE:DGX) and Laboratory Corporation of America Holdings (NYSE:LH), are also in the fund’s top holdings.

But what about in a post-coronavirus world? Will the GERM ETF still make sense? Shriber thinks so. He wrote that while investors should see its near-term appeal because of the coronavirus, it also has long-term appeal for its broader focus. Plus, as the fund company highlights, there were 36 epidemic events in the U.S. from January 2011 to January 2018 alone.

If you want to buy into the vaccine hype but are worried about betting on the wrong company, the GERM ETF could be perfect for you.

Stocks Slump Tuesday as Cases Continue to Rise

[Tuesday, June 30, 9:31 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Well, there goes yesterday’s optimism. The major indices turned right around, sinking into the red on Tuesday as cases of the novel coronavirus continue to rise. Officials from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are warning that there is “too much virus” to get the pandemic under control. Today, Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation’s top infectious disease expert, will testify about the path forward. In short, as cases rise around the country, things look grim.

Investors still have the jobs report and Thursday morning’s standard jobless claims filing to watch this week. But will those numbers be enough to instill confidence? More states are joining Florida and Texas in pausing reopening plans, as others push ahead.

For now, the uncertainty is heavy. The S&P 500Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite are all opening down.

  • The S&P 500 opened lower by 0.12%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average opened lower by 0.33%
  • The Nasdaq Composite opened lower by 0.01%

Stocks Close Higher Monday on Housing Data

[Monday, June 29, 4:01 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

This morning, we wrote that investors were likely eyeing upcoming economic reports while bidding the major indices higher. That turned out to be true, as new numbers from the National Association of Realtors saw the Dow Jones Industrial Average gain more than 500 points. According to this afternoon’s report, pending home sales — sales where contracts are signed but the deal hasn’t closed — climbed 44.3% in May. That truly was a surprise, as economists were calling for a jump of 15%.

Plus, hard-hit Boeing (NYSE:BA) is making a comeback, closing higher by more than 14% today. This rally comes on news it is beginning test flights of its 737 Max aircraft. While analysts are quick to point out it will be a long time before the controversial plane resumes normal service, even a hint of normal is a victory at this point.

Investors are taking those two surprises and running, choosing to momentarily ignore the surge in novel coronavirus cases. Perhaps tomorrow, news that many states are revisiting lockdowns will see a return of panic. But for now, the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq Composite are joining the DJIA in the green.

  • The S&P 500 closed higher by 1.47%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed higher by 2.32%
  • The Nasdaq Composite closed higher by 1.2%

Pour Yourself a Beer and Buy Anheuser-Busch Stock

[Monday, June 29, 3:18 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Happy hours, weekends at craft breweries, trivia nights. These beloved social outings were temporarily removed from society, thanks to the novel coronavirus. But according to data from BeerBoard, beer is back on the tap and Americans are back in the breweries. As Axios’ Hans Nichols puts it, although it’s not a perfect measure, the so-called Beer Barometer still indicates the U.S. is reopening.

The good news is that despite attention-grabbing headlines from Florida and Texas, approximately 85% of BeerBoard’s clients have reopened. Granted, BeerBoard can’t speak to every brewery or bar, but with 1,300 clients across the U.S., it’s a good analysis.

The bad news is that only half of the taps at those reopened watering holes are on. And, as Nichols emphasizes, the restaurant industry is far from its pre-pandemic standing.

For investors, there are a few takeaways. To start, the fact that so many breweries have reopened is an indication of economic recovery. Just think about where we were in late March. However, consumers’ pent-up demand hasn’t quite taken the recovery all the way yet. This means that investors should start looking for solid beer stocks that will benefit from those final stages of the return to normal.

Barron’s Teresa Rivas has one recommendation: Anheuser-Busch InBev (NYSE:BUD). Not only are the company’s beer brands staples, but its Bud Light Seltzer will benefit from America’s obsession with hard seltzers. Essentially, BUD stock has it all. With a few more hot summer months ahead, start stocking up your pantry, and starting buying Anheuser-Busch stock.

Gilead’s New Price for Remdesivir Makes GILD Stock a Buy

[Monday, June 29, 1:43 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

A loss for patients is a win for the healthcare world, and for eager investors. That sentiment is true today, as Gilead Sciences (NASDAQ:GILD) confirms a price range for its remdesivir treatment. According to most experts, the final per-patient price of $3,120 will almost guarantee the company makes a profit. This news comes after weeks of concerns that a lower price would appease advocacy groups, but limit the upside potential for GILD stock.

There’s no joy in this bull case, but it’s important to understand. The $3,120 price tag reflects what U.S. hospitals will pay for the average individual with private insurance. President Donald Trump has already secured 500,000 doses of remdesivir for U.S. hospitals, likely enough to last through September. But these doses aren’t a free gift from the White House — it will charge them Gilead’s set price.

Remdesivir is the only drug that proved effective against the novel coronavirus in clinical trials. Because of this success, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has granted Gilead emergency-use authorization for the antiviral. Gilead had initially developed the drug as a treatment for Ebola.

The pandemic has brought concerns over unemployment, healthcare costs and broader social justice movements to the mainstream. Each week investors have watched millions of Americans file for initial unemployment benefits. With that, millions of Americans now find themselves without health insurance. That reality — and the needs of lower-income countries — has lead advocacy groups to push Gilead for lower prices. Investors, wary of the limited stock-price upside lower prices would bring, have largely stopped flirting with GILD stock. Even today, shares are up just marginally in intraday trading.

Morality concerns aren’t disappearing, and neither is pricing pressure. Early studies have declared cheap steroid dexamethasone effective in some of the worst cases of Covid-19. Hospitals can acquire that drug for just a few dollars per vial. However, that drug still has a ways to go to catch up with remdesivir. In the meantime, a new rise in cases means more demand for Gilead’s treatment. And at a high price, that demand should translate to a pretty profit for the drugmaker.

Kevin O’Leary: 7 Stocks to Buy for the ‘Great Digital Pivot’

[Monday, June 29, 1:07 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Shark Tank star Kevin O’Leary has been playing the role of detective. As the novel coronavirus has continued to shape and shift the world we know, O’Leary has been keeping close watch. He’s indexing the changes that he sees and investing in them himself. And according to Benzinga’s Dustin Blitchok, these changes center around a trend O’Leary has dubbed the “Great Digital Pivot.”

We all know that Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) is a stock market star. It made e-commerce the norm. It has accelerated the decline of all sorts of brick-and-mortar retailers. To survive, many businesses were used to getting 40% of their sales through Amazon’s platforms. But the pandemic changed that.

According to O’Leary, Amazon’s business customers are fighting back. The e-commerce giant isn’t exactly known for being warm and fuzzy, or for treating its business partners well. At a time when every dollar counts more, many smaller businesses were worried about losing their customers to Amazon. When you buy a product on the site, you don’t exactly get connected to the third-party seller.

O’Leary is investing in this rebellion through the “Great Digital Pivot.” These are companies the legendary investor believes will benefit from businesses looking to profit from e-commerce sales in a way that doesn’t detract from their branding or image. And right now, he has seven top recommendations:

  • Shopify (NYSE:SHOP)
  • Alibaba (NYSE:BABA)
  • Wayfair (NYSE:W)
  • Crowdstrike Holdings (NASDAQ:CRWD)
  • Twilio (NYSE:TWLO)
  • DocuSign (NASDAQ:DOCU)
  • Zoom Video Communications (NASDAQ:ZM)

Note: According to Blitchok, these companies are all included in O’Leary’s O’Shares Global Internet Giants ETF (NYSEARCA:OGIG).

WHO Plans to Deliver 2 Billion Vaccine Doses in 2021

[Monday, June 29, 12:04 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Everything about this year’s race to develop a vaccine for the novel coronavirus has been ambitious. Companies developed candidates at record speed. Public health coalitions have contributed record funding and talent. Now, countries around the world are ramping up testing and manufacturing, establishing ambitious plans to vaccinate their populations. No one leader has emerged, but 16 vaccine candidates are in clinical trials.

According to BioPharma Dive’s Ned Pagliarulo, the World Health Organization (WHO) is taking the next ambitious step. The organization’s Access to COVID-19 Tools Accelerator published a plan to administer 2 billion doses of a vaccine by the end of 2021. In order to do so, it would need $18.1 billion.

In the United States, President Donald Trump’s Operation Warp Speed is funneling money and resources into vaccine R&D. Similar programs exist in the United Kingdom and the European Union. But the WHO fears for lower- and middle-income countries. Countries that do not have the money to pay for vaccines will likely become hotspots for the virus to fester. By truly vaccinating the world, it’s more likely experts can eradicate the virus.

As the WHO only has a fraction of the money it needs, it has set up a so-called investment facility. Wealthier countries can purchase doses through the facility — which will make 950 million doses available. From there, with demand levels high, companies will have an incentive to scale up manufacturing. The WHO will then purchase another billion doses and distribute them across low-income countries.

Like with other steps in the vaccine process, this means there will continue to be increased pressure on and excitement around leaders in the race. Within Operation Warp Speed, that has meant Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ), AstraZeneca (NYSE:AZN), Moderna (NASDAQ:MRNA), Pfizer (NYSE:PFE) and Merck (NYSE:MRK). As the WHO expands its focus internationally other vaccine makers could also receive a boost. Keep a close eye on top vaccine players.

Stocks Open Higher Monday as Coronavirus Cases Jump

[Monday, June 29, 9:31 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

What a weekend. The global death toll from the novel coronavirus surpassed 500,000. Hospitals in the United States are rushing to prepare for a second surge in new cases. States like Texas and Florida are shutting down bars, delaying key business reopenings and bracing for the worst. According to the New York Times’ Frances Robles, cases in the latter state are up “fivefold” in just two weeks.

There’s not much to celebrate there, and investors also have a jobs report due this week to process. On Friday, we saw the gloom in the market take the major indices lower. But on Monday, despite a string of worrisome headlines, stocks are in the green.

Will that change today? Will this week’s economic updates cause another round of panic? Or, will we finally start to see more meaningful signs of recovery? As usual, it’s too soon to tell. The S&P 500, Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite are opening in the red.

  • The S&P 500 opened higher by 0.32%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average opened higher by 0.77%
  • The Nasdaq Composite opened higher by 0.17%

Stocks Close Lower Friday as Pandemic Fears Return

[Friday, June 26, 4:01 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Ugh. We didn’t exactly see a weekend rally in the stock market today. The major indices remain in the red, as novel coronavirus cases continue to rise around the United States. After a record climb in infection numbers, there are now 2.4 million confirmed cases. And the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimate there could actually be 24 million cases.

State officials are now responding to the rise in infections, halting or reversing reopening plans. North Carolina Gov. Ray Cooper has made face masks mandatory in public. And Florida is closing its bars — again — to try and slow the spread of Covid-19.

Companies are also responding. Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) continues to close its retail locations in hard-hit states. Disney (NYSE:DIS) has paused its plans to reopen California’s Disneyland. And Delta Air Lines (NYSE:DAL) is strengthening its position on face masks. If you don’t wear one, you’ll be banned from your flight.

With a vaccine still a long ways out, bulls will face a challenge on Monday to turn things around. For now, the S&P 500Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite are in the red.

  • The S&P 500 closed lower by 2.42%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed lower by 2.83%
  • The Nasdaq Composite closed lower by 2.59%

Is There a Bull Case Behind Rising Coronavirus Numbers?

[Friday, June 26, 3:23 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

MarketWatch’s Steve Goldstein said it best. Everyone has “become” an epidemiologist thanks to the novel coronavirus. Wall Street analysts are modeling infection numbers. So is your college friend who sells essential oils. Everyone wants to know exactly how the pandemic will impact their economy and their families, and with so much uncertainty present in the market, everyone is trying to find answers for themselves.

Right now, a source of uncertainty is the spike in Covid-19 cases. After reopening, Florida and Texas have already had to pause plans. Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) is closing stores once again. Americans are struggling to balance social distancing protocols with pent-up demand and a lust for “normal” life.

But a rise in cases has brought fear back to the market. Stocks have been struggling most of the week, and analysts are back to looking at work-from-home and defensive plays. There is one analyst, however, that is taking the resurgence of the novel coronavirus as a good sign: Christopher Wood, the head of global equity strategies at Jefferies.

According to the analyst, the spike in cases is perhaps a sign that the virus is losing its strength. His evidence? The virus is now spreading outside of crowded cities, it’s starting to mostly affect younger people and the mortality rate appears to be falling. He thinks this means Covid-19 will “burn itself out” like the SARS virus did.

Even if he’s wrong, Wood maintains that a second shock wave isn’t about to hit the market. He believes officials will work together to prevent nationwide lockdowns and will strategize to keep the economy running through the summer. His argument may be hard to believe, but it’s worth noting, especially as many investors find themselves pulled between fearing a second wave and cheering a reopening rally.

Tencent Stock Is a Buy on Its Growing Media Dominance

[Friday, June 26, 2:52 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Tencent (OTCMKTS:TCEHY) has wasted no time in 2020 growing its global footprint. Quickly recognizing what trends the novel coronavirus was accelerating, the company InvestorPlace’s Tezcan Gecgil recently called a “behemoth” has rushed to get ahead. With that in mind, investors should rush to get ahead of Tencent’s likely share-price explosion.

When Gecgil recommended the stock on June 15, she highlighted all of the different ways Tencent exerted its power in tech and entertainment. It controls popular messaging app WeChat. It now has a stake in recent IPO Warner Music Group (NASDAQ:WMG) after spinning off its own Tencent Music Entertainment (NYSE:TME) in 2018. Plus, it has cloud, video and gaming businesses.

Earlier in the quarantine, the company made moves in the retail space after becoming a “substantial shareholder” in Australia-based Afterpay (OTCMKTS:AFTPY). Afterpay capitalizes on pandemic-driven consumer trends like buy now, pay later, making e-commerce purchases more accessible. That news led us to recommend AFTPY stock, and it certainly boosts the bull case for Tencent.

But Tencent isn’t stopping there. It just confirmed that it had acquired Malaysia-based iFlix, a streaming media company with operations in 13 countries including Indonesia, Bangladesh, the Philippines and Thailand. Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX) has been putting resources into its Asia expansion, but Tencent’s bold move could help it gain and sustain streaming dominance. This also gives it more of an edge against iQiyi (NASDAQ:IQ), which Tencent is allegedly looking to acquire a stake in.

In the music world, Tencent has its Joox brand, which, according to The Drum’s Shawn Lim, primarily sources users from Hong Kong, Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand and Myanmar. Joox is a “freemium” service with 30 million songs, and it uses country-specific partnerships to generate excitement. Soon after the mobile app’s release, it had dominated the streaming music market in Hong Kong and Malaysia. This early success already has some questioning whether it will beat Spotify (NYSE:SPOT) in Asia. Some experts have called Asia Spotify’s “weak spot,” recognizing Tencent’s enormous potential.

Lastly, in a time when video gaming and esports is the rage, Tencent is stepping up to the plate with a Nintendo (OTCMKTS:NTDOY) partnership. The duo just announced a new Pokemon game, which many have been quick to compare to League of Legends in mechanics. According to the South China Morning Post’s Ravi Hiranand, this is a sign the largest names in gaming are starting to trust and respect Tencent.

Tencent is clearly a behemoth. As Gecgil wrote earlier this month, TCEHY better be on your radar.

4 Marijuana Stocks to Buy Now for a Market Recovery

[Friday, June 26, 1:28 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Cannabis, cannabis, cannabis. The industry went from flying high to crashing hard. It turns out that investors simply weren’t willing to support marijuana stocks when the economy began to suffer. Over 2019, many allowed popular cannabis names to lose money, shake up leadership and experiment with new products, facilities and international expansion plans. But amid a pandemic, the stock market wanted more hard numbers.

Unfortunately, this has meant that even some of the strongest names in the cannabis world have been decimated. U.S. legalization remains uncertain, and legal growers are still fighting for share with the black market.

Plus, the novel coronavirus has brought even more uncertainty and hardship to the cannabis space. Some scientists think cannabis — or at least certain proteins high in CBD — can help treat Covid-19. Others warn that even smoking occasionally increases your risk for contracting the virus, and increases the severity of your symptoms. At the very beginning of lockdowns, many consumers stocked up on marijuana products to cope. But a few months in, drops in consumer spending and rising unemployment are hurting that vice catalyst.

Clearly, it’s an ugly time to be a cannabis company. But there is still hope, at least for the strongest players. Other hard-hit industries have already started to rebound as investors processed their overreactions in March. Plus, at least over the long term, the bull case for marijuana will become clearer. That’s why InvestorPlace’s David Moadel is recommending four companies he sees as being most likely to benefit from a rally in the sector.

According to Moadel, if you plant your seeds today, you could see them bear fruit later in 2020. Here are his top four recommendations:

  • Aphria (NASDAQ:APHA)
  • Hexo (NYSE:HEXO)
  • Cronos Group (NASDAQ:CRON)
  • Aurora Cannabis (NYSE:ACB)

Buy Gap Stock on Brand Collaboration With Kanye West

[Friday, June 26, 12:45 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

What a headline — and what a share-price catalyst. After months of struggling, Gap (NYSE:GPS) shares are up more than 25% in intraday trading on news that the retailer would partner with Kanye West and his fashion company Yeezy.

So what’s the big deal? Don’t celebrities partner with brands all the time? A big part of Friday’s excitement comes from the fact that Gap has been struggling. Beyond its namesake Gap locations, it also is the company behind Old Navy and Banana Republic. What those apparel outlets all have in common is that they are often found in malls. Amid the novel coronavirus pandemic, it’s been hard for retailers. And malls were struggling for years beforehand.

Another key issue with Gap is what the New York Times’ Sapna Maheshwari calls an identity crisis. What makes a Gap or an Old Navy store special? And what consumers prioritize those retailers? Kanye West, however, doesn’t share that same problem.

Gap signed a 10-year contract with West to create affordable apparel items through a new Yeezy Gap collaboration. Additionally, West is set to play a key role in deciding how his products are arranged and sold through Gap stores. While a new brand itself is exciting, especially with celebrity star-power behind it, it’s the impact on Gap’s revenue that is likely most exciting for investors.

According to Maheshwari, Gap hopes the Yeezy Gap line will bring in $1 billion of revenue annually. In 2019, the company brought in just $4.6 billion of global revenue. The partnership with West then could generate a new future for the retailer. As consumer preferences and brand expectations shift amid a world-altering pandemic, such a move could keep Gap from falling victim to the retail apocalypse.

Consider buying GPS stock, and make sure to check in with Gap’s earnings after the Yeezy spinoff launches.

7 Small-Cap Stocks to Buy Ahead of a Major Rally

[Friday, June 26, 11:21 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Over the last few months investors have largely clung to big tech names. It makes sense, as companies like Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) and Alphabet (NASDAQ:GOOG, NASDAQ:GOOGL) have reputations and business models that are commonly understood. Sure, the novel coronavirus is wreaking havoc on the entire economy, but it’s likely safe to assume that internet search and social media will survive the pandemic. But what about small-cap stocks without household recognition?

Credit Suisse analysts are acknowledging that up until now, this year has created a lot of reliance on mega-cap tech stocks. And investors are starting to doubt their luck chasing some of these hot names. According to the analysts, this reality, among many other catalysts, is creating big potential for small-cap stocks in the near future.

Andrew Garthwaite, a global equity strategist at Credit Suisse, wrote in a client note that “Small caps are more cyclical and less diversified businesses and thus do well as the economic cycle recovers.”

With that in mind, here are seven small-cap stocks the firm is recommending now (subscription required):

  • BWX Technologies (NYSE:BWXT)
  • eHealth (NASDAQ:EHTH)
  • Equitrans Midstream (NYSE:ETRN)
  • PennyMac Financial Services (NYSE:PFSI)
  • Tradeweb Markets (NASDAQ:TW)
  • TreeHouse Foods (NYSE:THS)
  • United Therapeutics (NASDAQ:UTHR)

Stocks Slump Friday as Coronavirus Cases Hit a Record

[Friday, June 26, 9:31 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

It may almost be the weekend, but Wall Street sure isn’t cheering. The novel coronavirus is making a fierce comeback, forcing Florida to join Texas in its delayed reopening. At a broader level, the rise in new cases hit a second record in the U.S. That also comes on news seemingly more young people than ever are testing positive. What exactly are investors to do?

Fortunately, there have been several signs this week that vaccine development is moving along well. Companies like Inovio Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:INO), Vaxart (NASDAQ:VXRT) and Sanofi  (NYSE:SNY) each are prepping for new stages of manufacturing, production and testing. It’s a good sign, but healthcare woes rage on.

In a night of conflicting social media messages — symbolic of the dueling catalysts on Wall Street — President Donald Trump tweeted that the economy was “roaring back.” In another late-night move, he asked the Supreme Court to strike down the Affordable Care Act, the healthcare law of former President Barack Obama. Many are worried about that move’s effects on the millions of Americans who have recently lost their jobs and their health insurance.

That’s a grim way to start the day, but anything is possible. Perhaps stocks will be headed into the green before the end of today’s trading. For now, the S&P 500Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite are all opening in the red.

  • The S&P 500 opened lower by 0.43%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average opened lower by 0.76%
  • The Nasdaq Composite opened lower by 0.23%

3 Travel Stocks to Buy for 2021 and Beyond

[Thursday, June 25, 4:35 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Let’s make sure we’re all on the same page. The novel coronavirus began its economic damage in early March, and travel stocks were some of the hardest-hit equities. In the last few weeks, as states have continued to reopen, bulls led an impressive rally in these names. But now that the U.S. is seeing a record rise in Covid-19 cases, some investors are swearing off the travel sector altogether.

But InvestorPlace’s Nicolas Chahine doesn’t want you to do that. In fact, he actually is recommending three travel stocks now. Although rushed reopenings — or beach week trips and Memorial Day weekend barbeques — have brought new cases, that doesn’t mean travel stocks will never recover. Chahine wrote today that investors need to think of their buys as plays for 2021 and beyond.

If you expand your timeframe, the pressure for immediate returns isn’t so strong. That way, you can ride out the volatility in travel stocks and not fret so much about reopening plans. Doesn’t that sound like a good plan? Here are the 2021-focused travel stocks Chahine thinks you should buy now:

  • Disney (NYSE:DIS)
  • Southwest Airlines (NYSE:LUV)
  • Wynn Resorts (NASDAQ:WYNN)

Stocks Close Higher Thursday Despite Rise in Cases

[Thursday, June 25, 4:01 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Stocks closed higher on Thursday, but for no apparent reason. Just this morning, we wrote about the weekly unemployment figures and Disney’s (NYSE:DIS) plan to shutter parks. But things didn’t turn around throughout the day. In fact, Texas announced it would halt its reopening plan after cases surged in the state. And in response to rising cases in Florida, Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) will be shuttering a few recently reopened locations.

Do you see a bullish case anywhere in those headlines? I don’t. But many investors are confident that despite a resurgence in cases, we are still in a better place now than in early March. Vaccine makers continue to make progress — and receive funding for key research. Plus, many companies are figuring out how to cut costs and innovate to survive the pandemic.

What will tomorrow bring? Will we head into the weekend on another rally? Or, will fears of virus-spreading beach trips put a damper on weekend plans? For now, that’s unclear. The S&P 500, the Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite all are in the green.

  • The S&P 500 closed higher by 1.09%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed higher by 1.17%
  • The Nasdaq Composite closed higher by 1.09%

Buy Target Stock on Plans for Nationwide Grocery Delivery

[Thursday, June 25, 3:45 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

There’s a lot to like about Target (NYSE:TGT). It has strong brands like Good&Gather, Opalhouse, Cat & Jack and up&up. It also has the beloved Dollar Spot — a section dedicated for cheap items you might not need but most certainly will want. But Target also faces a lot of competition from e-commerce giants like Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN). Even within the brick-and-mortar retail and grocery space, Target faces competition from Walmart (NYSE:WMT) and Kroger (NYSE:KR).

In what is likely a move to become more competitive, Target just announced it will expand grocery delivery services to locations around the country. According to Retail Dive’s Jeff Wells, it had been piloting such delivery offerings before the novel coronavirus hit. It temporarily paused the pilot, but after resuming tests in Minneapolis, Saint Paul and Kansas City, the company released a plan Thursday to take the service nationwide.

As Wells wrote, the service will be available at roughly 400 stores by the end of June and 1,500 stores by the holiday season. Prior to this announcement, shoppers had access to 250,000 products via curbside pick-up, but perishable grocery items were not included. Now, 750 of these fresh grocery items will be available for free delivery.

There’s a lot to like here. As we have previously reported in this blog, the entire food world got shaken up at the start of the pandemic. Consumers opted to stock up on grocery items, and any stores offering delivery became big winners. Although the U.S. is moving forward with a reopening plan, a rise in new Covid-19 cases should keep grocery delivery a hot service.

Plus, as Barron’s Teresa Rivas wrote, there’s another key reason to be bullish on Target. The company recently raised its minimum wage, and Credit Suisse analyst Seth Sigman thinks that its decision indicates “strength across the business.” He also believes many similar retailers will follow suit, and that increased sales and profits will keep the new minimum wage from negatively impacting he company.

If you’re ready to head back to Target’s stores, or if you’re still waiting out the pandemic inside, Target has something for you. That’s what makes TGT stock such a compelling by now, and it seems like Wall Street agrees.

This Week’s 6 IPO Stocks Are a Bullish Blessing

[Thursday, June 25, 3:06 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

In many ways, this has been a rough week. Disney (NYSE:DIS) delayed its reopening plans, and the entire state of Texas put a similar pause on its return to normal. Behind these signs of lackluster economic recovery is a “record” rise in novel coronavirus cases. Will we ever be able to walk about and socialize without masks on again?

But despite trouble brewing on Wall Street, the pace of initial public offerings is still picking up. According to Renaissance Capital, this week brings six new IPOs and one special purpose acquisition company (SPAC) to the public markets. As we reported yesterday, Albertsons is leading the way — the grocery chain is set to raise $1.3 billion when it debuts.

So what other companies are joining stock exchanges this week, and why do IPOs matter? Well, by at least one metric, these newly public companies are outperforming the broader market. The Renaissance IPO ETF (NYSEARCA:IPO) is up 32% so far this year, likely thank to its tech holdings. And beyond that, this first wave of post-quarantine IPOs is generating a ton of excitement. IPOs were starting to get a bad name thanks to the likes of Uber (NYSE:UBER) and WeWork, but now bulls have started to cheer on names like Vroom (NASDAQ:VRM), and soon-to-debut Lemonade.

For right now, a constant stream of IPOs is a sign that the stock market is looking ahead to better days.

With that in mind, let’s take a look at what’s on tap for this week. Besides Albertsons, there’s Agora, a Chinese developer of APIs for embedding voice and video, which will trade under the ticker API. According to TechCrunch’s Alex Wilhelm, this debut is one that “cannot happen soon enough.” Akouos, a biotech company focusing on inner-ear disorders; Ebang International, which makes equipment for cryptocurrency miningFusion Pharmaceuticals, a biotech making medicines for solid tumors; and PolyPid, a biotech company working to prevent infections at surgical sites, are also among closely watched new IPOs.

Experts are anticipating several more high-profile IPOs in the coming weeks, which is truly a bullish blessing. Disneyland may remain closed, but it looks like the IPO world isn’t headed for quarantine again anytime soon.

5 Stocks to Buy for the Future of Healthcare

[Thursday, June 25, 2:04 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

There’s no doubt that healthcare is changing — and individual consumers are at the forefront of these changes. In fact, it’s this “consumerization” of healthcare that UBS analysts believe will soon define the sector’s best investing opportunities. But what exactly does it mean to “consumerize” healthcare? According to UBS, in the wake of the novel coronavirus, individuals began asserting more control over their health and wellness through research and advocacy.

Just think about it. At least part of this trend is probably thanks to the growing presence of healthcare in the mainstream. The pandemic made the whole country familiar with the N95 mask, personal protective equipment, ventilators and all sorts of new health symptoms. Plus, many found themselves newly unemployed — and newly without health insurance.

Combine coronavirus catalysts with an aging population and growing discourse over the cost of healthcare, and it’s a perfect storm. A new generation of Americans want to advocate for themselves and research health outcomes. UBS thinks investors should start taking this shift seriously — analysts estimate it could be a $600 billion opportunity. And to profit now, UBS is looking for a variety of health-focused plays.

Here are the analysts’ recommendations (subscription required):

  • Teladoc (NYSE:TDOC)
  • Walmart (NYSE:WMT)
  • Salesforce (NYSE:CRM)
  • Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL)
  • Danaher (NYSE:DHR)

3 Safe ETFs to Buy for Exposure to Leisure Stocks

[Thursday, June 25, 12:39 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Find a sector that has been hit hard by the novel coronavirus, and examine its potential for survival. Does it represent something that consumers need and want? Can it innovate? If so, buy the dip. That thinking has led to massive rallies in travel and leisure names over the last few weeks. But many investors may be hesitant to dip their toes in troubled waters — a rise in Covid-19 cases has already demonstrated its ability to turn the market upside down.

That’s why InvestorPlace’s Todd Shriber recommends turning to exchange-traded funds for safer exposure to leisure stocks. Like with any other category, these ETFs are designed to provide diversification. If one popular name like Penn National Gaming (NASDAQ:PENN) or Disney (NYSE:DIS) suffers, hopefully the fund’s other holdings will keep it balanced.

As Shriber makes clear, it may be impossible to truly marry “safety” with “leisure” these days. But if you’re set on exposure to leisure stocks, these funds are your best bets.

Here is what Shriber is recommending now:

  • Invesco Dynamic Leisure and Entertainment ETF (NYSEARCA:PEJ)
  • VanEck Vectors Gaming ETF (NASDAQ:BJK)
  • Roundhill BITKRAFT Esports & Digital Entertainment ETF (NYSEARCA:NERD)

Vaxart Stock Pops 40% Thursday on Vaccine News

[Thursday, June 25, 11:25 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

As a second wave of novel coronavirus cases — or perhaps just a brutal resurgence of the first wave — emerges, the case for a vaccine becomes even stronger. This week, we’ve seen a host of updates from Inovio Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:INO), Sanofi (NYSE:SNY) and Translate Bio (NASDAQ:TBIO), and each has had the market moving. Today, Vaxart (NASDAQ:VXRT) joins that list, as VXRT stock is up 40% in intraday trading.

The likely catalyst for the big move is an announcement regarding a new manufacturing and lyophilization partnership with Attwill Medical Solutions Sterilflow. Lyophilization is a specific type of freeze-drying process. Between the lines here is an indication that Vaxart, a California-based vaccine developer, is ready to move forward with its Covid-19 vaccine.

According to the company’s press release, Attwill Medical Solutions Sterilflow will allocate resources to help scale up the production of various Vaxart products, including its preclinical oral vaccine for Covid-19. Vaxart CEO Andrei Floroiu said Attwill can produce 1 billion vaccine doses a year — and Vaxart is already thinking about supplying its vaccine candidate to the Europe and the U.S.

Vaxart believes its so-called oral tablet vaccines are ideal because they can provide sterilizing immunity for infectious diseases like Covid-19 and trigger specific types of immune responses. Not much is known about its Covid-19 vaccine, as it is in preclinical stages. Vaxart has similar candidates further along in the research pipeline for the norovirus, common influenza and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV).

As with any of these high-flying vaccine stocks, especially ones that are less far along in the research and testing process, it’s important for investors to be careful. However, it’s not a bad idea at all to add VXRT to your coronavirus stocks radar.

Buy Fastly Stock on Its Work-From-Home Success

[Thursday, June 25, 10:50 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

CNBC’s Ari Levy made a shocking announcement earlier this week. Zoom Video Communications (NASDAQ:ZM) is no longer the top work-from-home stock in 2020. How could this be? Seemingly everyone has turned to Zoom’s platform, scheduling video conferences with friends, coworkers and even family members. But what many investors may have forgotten is that a certain type of tech company is needed to power Zoom’s video-conferencing success.

That’s exactly where Fastly (NYSE:FSLY) comes in. The cloud computing company helps supports all sorts of work-from-home tech, from team messaging on Slack (NYSE:WORK) to streaming music on Spotify (NYSE:SPOT) to other trends like video conferencing. Cloud computing is simply a necessity to make our remote world function. Without companies like Fastly, the massive — and almost immediate — shift to working from home wouldn’t have been possible.

As a result, Fastly stock is now up more than 300% in 2020. Zoom, previously considered to be this year’s biggest winner, is up 280%. Just to be clear, that’s still incredible success.

Perhaps the shock of Levy’s announcement comes from how under the radar Fastly is. Who thinks about the tech behind the tech they’re currently using? If you haven’t been pursuing that line of thinking, Fastly’s victory makes it clear it’s time to start.

After rallying 300%, some investors are likely cooling on Fastly. But InvestorPlace’s William White reported earlier this week that shares may be headed for even more success. The company beat estimates for its first-quarter earnings, and it’s fair to expect a similar performance in the second quarter. If Fastly can keep driving its business higher, investors are likely to reward the high-flying name. That’s especially true as many companies consider having employees work from home forever, or at least indefinitely.

Stocks Open Lower Thursday on Weekly Jobless Report

[Thursday, June 25, 9:31 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Here we are again. Another Thursday, another grim look at initial claims for unemployment benefits, and another day stocks are opening lower. Today, investors learned that another 1.48 million Americans filed for such benefits, despite massive moves toward recovery around the U.S. When will the job market start to recover?

As CNBC’s Jeff Cox highlighted, there are two key takeaways from the report. On one hand, 1.48 million people filed this past week, which was worse than Wall Street’s estimate for 1.35 million. On the other hand, the number of continuing jobless claims fell below 20 million. In coming weeks, it will be critical to watch how many Americans are returning to work.

But there’s another reason for the somber mood in the stock market today. As we’ve previously discussed, the bulls and bears are fighting it out. Are we facing a reopening rally or a terrible second wave of novel coronavirus cases? Today, investors are likely digesting some bearish news. Disney (NYSE:DIS) has decided to delay its reopening of California’s Disneyland. Summer camps, schools and all sorts of other retailers are also coming to terms with renewed lockdowns. Will this be the new normal again?

For now, the S&P 500Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite are all starting Thursday in the red.

  • The S&P 500 opened lower by 0.12%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average opened lower by 0.49%
  • The Nasdaq Composite opened lower by 0.02%

Keep a Close Eye on the Albertsons Grocery IPO

[Wednesday, June 24, 3:30 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Hey, remember when people were getting into fistfights over toilet paper, chicken and eggs? It’s refreshing to know that some things have changed in recent weeks, but grocery stores are still hot. With that in mind, bulls should keep a close eye on Albertsons, which is set for an initial public offering this week. It will trade under the symbol ACI on the New York Stock Exchange.

As we have previously reported in this blog, the pandemic changed the American food situation. Instead of rushing home from offices, heading to happy hours and grabbing dinner out with friends, families embraced the grocery store. Well, some embraced the grocery store. Others turned to grocery delivery apps, curbside pick-up services and utter panic. Luckily for investors, Albertsons benefits from all of the above. The grocery chain — and parent of Safeway — is a big leader in the industry.

Albertsons has over 2,000 locations across 34 states. And where it operates, it has market dominance. Plus, in response to the pandemic, Albertsons ramped up a partnership with Instacart and began its own delivery and pick-up services.

So what’s the big deal with its IPO? Well, Albertsons has long talked about debuting on the public markets. In 2015, it paused its plans due to unfavorable market conditions. Now,despite ongoing coronavirus concerns, it’s hitting the NYSE. To many, that’s a sign that Albertsons is truly a coronavirus winner and in a strong position. Renaissance Capital estimates the IPO will raise $1.3 billion at an enterprise value of $19 billion.

And, once it’s public, there may be room for more growth. Albertsons operates through a handful of well-known brands, and in recent years tried to acquire Whole Foods and Rite Aid (NYSE:RAD). Will it be able to close the next big deal?

Sure, consumers are already headed back to restaurants, but they’re not completely abandoning grocery stores. Some families even learned to embrace new cooking projects. But either way, expect Albertsons to benefit from a more permanent pandemic-driven shift.

7 Stocks to Buy to Embrace Pandemic Home Improvement

[Wednesday, June 24, 2:47 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Some Americans are taking the early days of reopening as a chance to move. And why not pack up and head across the country — or just into a cheaper suburb? As InvestorPlace Markets Analyst Luke Lango wrote today, many millennials are becoming first-time homebuyers, embracing low interest rates. And these low interest rates are the direct result of the novel coronavirus.

But what if you can’t afford to buy a home, or you’re simply happy with your current location? You’re definitely not alone. Many Americans have spent roughly the last three months getting too familiar with where they live. Some have fallen in love with every nook and cranny. Others are now looking to make big changes. For those preparing for “WFH forever,” home-improvement projects can be the happy medium. You don’t have to move, but you don’t have to make peace with ugly paint.

With this in mind, analysts at Bank of America are rounding up retail stocks that will benefit from summer do-it-yourself trends. From remodeling to making each room feel more comfortable, these stocks represent companies gaining popularity with remote workers.

Here are seven great picks to start (subscription required):

  • Lowe’s (NYSE:LOW)
  • Tractor Supply (NASDAQ:TSCO)
  • Bed Bath & Beyond (NASDAQ:BBBY)
  • RH (NYSE:RH)
  • Tempur Sealy (NYSE:TPX)
  • Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN)
  • Wayfair (NYSE:W)

Lenovo Stock Is a Buy on the Return-to-Work Trend

[Wednesday, June 24, 2:17 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

For many Americans, it will soon be time to swap out work-from-home pajamas for long commutes and hours in cubicles. But one thing that isn’t changing as employees return to work is the threat of the novel coronavirus. That’s why Lenovo (OTCMKTS:LNVGY) is working to position itself as the top tech play for companies in need of a little extra help.

Lenovo is a China-based tech giant, but as Axios’ Ina Fried writes, it also has an internet of things (IOT) business that is gaining traction. Fortunately for LNVGY shareholders, this IOT business is based in the U.S. Now, Lenovo is positioning itself as the top solutions provider for the return-to-work trend. Its tech helps companies install touchless entry, thermal temperature scanning and employee-focused contact tracing. This way, the move back to the office brings less risk for employees and their families.

Embracing the return-to-work catalyst inherently makes sense, but Lenovo also has the data to back it up. John Gordon, the president of Lenovo’s IOT business, recently shared that 88% of general U.S. survey respondents wanted to know their employers were using tech solutions to make offices safer. That translates to a lot of companies looking to lure employees back with new precautions.

Lenovo’s suite of products, known as ThinkIoT Back to Work Solutions, also provides the ability to monitor employee safety. For instance, managers could make sure all employees stay at least six feet apart the whole day.

If you’re still looking for more reasons to be bullish on this return-to-work play, consider this. For those unable or unwilling to return to in-person work and school, Lenovo also has solutions. It has its ThinkSmart View devices for remote work, and also partners with school systems for remote education through its LanSchool Air offerings.

Buy Etsy Stock to Profit From the Face Mask Economy

[Wednesday, June 24, 11:57 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Early in March, companies that manufactured and sold N95 masks — those considered most effective against infectious diseases like the novel coronavirus — skyrocketed. But what about companies that make and sell DIY masks? As public health guidance has evolved, Americans started using bandanas, t-shirts, coffee filters and even underwear to cover their noses and mouths. Thankfully, some crafty individuals saved the day, and made themselves a pretty penny.

The biggest winner in all of this just may be Etsy (NASDAQ:ETSY). According to CNBC’s Ari Levy, ETSY stock hit an all-time high yesterday on news of its coronavirus success. RBC analysts found that 82% of buyers expect to spend more money on Etsy in the next year. And 4 million new buyers came to the craft-focused platform in April.

A big part of that success includes total face mask sales of $133 million for that same month.

You could argue that as states reopen, demand for face masks will drop. But Etsy has already proven that it can beat expectations. Investors sold off ETSY stock like crazy in March, assuming consumers would halt all purchases. Shares have more than tripled in price since then. And many experts think face masks will be a part of life in the U.S. for a long time to come, if not forever.

Just think about it. In other parts of the world, face masks are commonly used to prevent the spread of infectious diseases. Now, many in the U.S. are coming around to it, although there is certainly friction. Many reopening plans for schools require mandatory masks, and office workers are now spending eight hours a day with their faces covered. Demand will stick around, especially as consumers need more masks to tackle more errands as restrictions ease. My favorite face mask is courtesy of my grandmother’s friend — it features little puppies and paw prints.

The face mask economy is booming, as is e-commerce. That’s why InvestorPlace Markets Analyst Luke Lango is so bullish on ETSY stock. He believes its core fundamentals are solid and that this rally is far from over — and that sounds good to me.

iBio Stock Is Soaring on New IBM Partnership

[Wednesday, June 24, 11:15 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Many investors have long liked iBio (NYSEMKT:IBIO) because of its unique approach to fighting the novel coronavirus. And today, International Business Machines (NYSE:IBM) joined bulls in championing the company’s potential. As a result, shares are up 12% in intraday trading.

So what exactly is the story? Well, it comes down to iBio’s approach. Like other biotech companies, it is touting two vaccine candidates for Covid-19. But its IBIO-200 and IBIO-201 are perhaps less important than its FastPharming production system. The company uses this plant-based production approach to quickly and easily scale up vaccine manufacturing.

Today, IBM decided to give the vaccine candidates and the FastPharming system a vote of confidence. It extended iBio its IBM Clinical Development (ICD) solution for 18 months, free of charge. ICD helps companies manage patient sites and test facilities, and the platform focuses on helping reduce the time and costs behind clinical trials by making trial data easier to access and digest. As the race heats up, anything that can help iBio get a leg up certainly goes a long way.

It’s important to note that some of the criticism surrounding iBio is fair. It does have much less research funding than competitors like Inovio Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:INO) and Moderna (NASDAQ:MRNA). According to InvestorPlace’s Muslim Farooque, iBio has just $4.5 million in its current budget for research and development.

But Farooque is still bullish on IBIO stock. FastPharming is a truly unique system that sets iBio apart from many other biotech companies. Even if its two vaccine candidates fail to successfully combat Covid-19, it is likely that FastPharming goes on to great success. That’s why Farooque wrote earlier in June that as long as the company can manage its finances, it’s a great buy.

With IBM’s cost-managing tools, iBio should be in an even better place than before. Don’t take your eyes off this innovative name.

5 Housing Stocks to Buy as the Market Recovers

[Wednesday, June 24, 10:37 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Housing stocks have been rallying hard since March, and some investors are starting to worry. Why? As InvestorPlace Markets Analyst Luke Lango wrote, these investors are comparing a booming housing market to a struggling U.S. economy and deciding it’s time to sell their housing stocks. But that would be a bad move for your portfolio.

There are a lot of trends supporting housing stocks. Just this morning, we learned that new home sales climbed 16.6% in May, beating economists’ expectations. The novel coronavirus may have initially turned off prospective homebuyers, but it looks like that’s not the case any longer. As Lango wrote, a massive wave of first-time millennial homebuyers is meeting the reopening rally. The result is growing demand for entry-level homes across the U.S.

And according to Axios’ Erica Pandey, there’s one other catalyst that should help the housing market. “Second-tier” cities are fighting to attract high-earning employees that are now working from home forever. As big companies in Silicon Valley and New York City move to allow such policies, there may be some incentive for employees to move. If salaries don’t change with the shift, workers could save more money living in smaller cities with lower costs of living. Knowing that, Savannah, Georgia, is offering $2,000 to any remote worker that relocates to the city.

Although it’s too early to tell exactly how this will play, some experts are already calling for a housing boom in smaller cities and suburban neighborhoods.

Recognizing all the potential in the housing market, Lango made five recommendations this morning that will benefit from all of these trends. Here’s a look at his picks:

  • KB Homes (NYSE:KBH)
  • Lennar (NYSE:LEN)
  • D.R. Horton (NYSE:DHI)
  • Toll Brothers (NYSE:TOL)

Stocks Open Lower Wednesday on Record Virus Cases

[Wednesday, June 24, 9:31 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Remember how we outlined the two big catalysts driving the stock market? Well, that information is important again today. Bulls are fighting to defend the reopening rally — and all other signs of economic recovery. Bears are pointing to rising novel coronavirus cases, that in some states, are setting new records for daily diagnoses. The bears are winning Wednesday morning.

So what do the bulls have to champion today? Well, yesterday’s vaccine news from Sanofi (NYSE:SNY) and Inovio Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:INO) isn’t far from mind. But there’s another sign of recovery coming from the housing market. Today, investors learned that new home sales rose 16.6% in May, after bottoming in March and April. According to Yahoo Finance’s Myles Udland, this report beat economists’ predictions and is a great indicator of the market’s health.

Perhaps on another day, this better-than-expected report would have had the major indices racing higher before the opening bell. Unfortunately, news that cases continue to climb after reopening is taking priority. As many states move into phases two and three of their reopening plans, it’s worrisome to think what could happen if another round of lockdowns is necessary.

Grab a mask, and keep a close eye on the market. The S&P 500Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite are all in the red.

  • The S&P 500 opened lower by 0.68%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average opened lower by 0.86%
  • The Nasdaq Composite opened lower by 0.26%

5 Cheap Stocks to Buy Before Q2 Earnings Season

[Tuesday, June 23, 4:17 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Except for a few hiccups driven by a resurgence in novel coronavirus cases, the stock market has been consistently headed higher. Retailers and restaurants are reopening, commuters are headed back to the office, and even many consumers are opting for crowded events and summer destinations. But InvestorPlace’s Laura Hoy wants to make sure investors don’t chase the rally without caution.

According to Hoy, buying too deeply into the rally, and pouring too much money into the market now, could be dangerous. That’s why she recommends being cautiously bullish and focusing on cheap stocks. What does she fear? Well, second-quarter earnings season is just around the corner. Most investors should know that earnings are likely to be ugly, but results could still cause another downturn.

Ahead of earnings then, Hoy recommends gradually buying cheap stocks that are likely to gain over time. Here are five of her top recommendations:

  • McDonald’s (NYSE:MCD)
  • AT&T (NYSE:T)
  • Facebook (NASDAQ:FB)
  • Remark Holdings (NASDAQ:MARK)

Stocks Close Higher Tuesday as Bulls Ride Vaccine Victory

[Tuesday, June 23, 4:01 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

As we wrote this morning, the stock market is a tale of two catalysts. And heading into the closing bell, it seems like only one matters to investors right now. This morning, it was clear concerns of rising novel coronavirus cases were clashing with a vaccine victory. Bulls won, driving the major indices higher despite the pandemic.

Sanofi’s (NYSE:SNY) announcement, particularly its plans to partner with Translate Bio (NASDAQ:TBIO) created a lot of motion in the market today. But as with previous vaccine announcements, it’s important to remember that the price action is bigger than any one company. Investors want — and need — to believe in a company’s ability to bring the world back to normal. As there are many companies chasing such a vaccine, there are many potential rally triggers. For instance, we also had an announcement from Inovio (NASDAQ:INO) that sent shares up on the day.

Will the vaccine optimism carry into tomorrow, or will new Covid-19 data force bulls to sit down? It’s hard to say, but as we’ve seen lately, anything is possible. For now, the S&P 500Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite are all in the green.

  • The S&P 500 closed higher by 0.43%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed higher by 0.5%
  • The Nasdaq Composite closed higher by 0.74%

4 Recession-Proof Stocks to Buy Now

[Tuesday, June 23, 3:20 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

The U.S. — and the rest of the world — is in a recession. Sure, signs of economic recovery are already popping up, but many industries are likely to feel long-lasting pain. Think about all the consumers who will delay vacations. Or all the states still preventing dine-in restaurant service. There’s just a lot weighing on the global economy right now.

That’s why InvestorPlace’s Tezcan Gecgil says it’s time for investors to get serious about protecting their portfolios. She likes a group of four stocks she sees as recession-proof plays. They are in defensive spaces, like consumer packaged goods. Some of her recommendations even pay dividends.

If you want proof that a little protection is what you need right now, InvestorPlace spoke with Sanjiv Sabherwal, the Goolsby-House Endowed Chair and Professor of Finance at the University of Texas at Arlington. Sabherwal shared some key insight on reopening the economy:

“I believe we need to maintain a balance between opening the economy and controlling the spread of the virus. If we open the economy too fast and without businesses, other organizations, and people following the best practices that inhibit the proliferation of the coronavirus, we run the risk of a surge in the virus and having to shut down again. On the other hand, we cannot afford to have the economy closed for a very long time.”

With economic risks still remaining, take a look at these four recession-proof stocks now:

  • Archer-Daniels-Midland (NYSE:ADM)
  • Diageo (NYSE:DEO)
  • Procter & Gamble (NYSE:PG)
  • Walmart (NYSE:WMT)

Buy Translate Bio Stock for Its Sanofi Partnership

[Tuesday, June 23, 1:41 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

French pharmaceutical giant Sanofi (NYSE:SNY) has been making waves since it first announced its vaccine candidate for the novel coronavirus. Perhaps most controversial was its promise to prioritize does for the United States. But today, Sanofi’s waves are pulling Translate Bio (NASDAQ:TBIO) stock much higher — like by 40%.

There are two parts to today’s big news. Sanofi is working with GlaxoSmithKline (NYSE:GSK) on a vaccine candidate, and today, it announced it anticipates receiving approval sooner than previously thought. Now, it believes the vaccine could be ready to go in the first half of 2021, as opposed to the second half. Here it’s important to note that Sanofi is behind the crowd, as some of its peers are farther along in clinical trials.

The other part of today’s news is having a much larger impact on Translate Bio, a smaller biotech company based out of Lexington, Massachusetts. Translate is partnered with Sanofi, and the duo is working to study a separate vaccine candidate that used messenger RNA (mRNA). Today, Sanofi announced it would invest as much as $1.9 billion in Translate Bio.

For Sanofi, the deal is exciting in that the company will get worldwide rights to any infectious disease vaccines that the partnership produces. Beyond a vaccine for Covid-19, it is also working with Translate Bio to study vaccines for the common influenza and other pathogens.

As Barron’s Bill Alpert wrote today, this deal should have a big influence on Translate Bio. It will give the company capital needed to pursue research goals, and help it pursue mRNA tech that is in high demand. Additionally, partnering with Sanofi will give it more visibility, especially if it finds some success with its coronavirus vaccine. H.C. Wainwright analyst Andrew Fein is bullish on TBIO stock, estimating it will hit $500 million in revenue by the end of the decade. He has a “buy” rating on the stock and an $18 price target, but it’s likely he’ll be revising that target soon.

Inovio Stock Pops 20% on New Government Funding

[Tuesday, June 23, 11:25 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Whether you love it or hate it, you have to admit Inovio Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:INO) is the scrappy underdog in the fight to treat the novel coronavirus. It’s a smaller company, and it’s more reliant on funding from public health coalitions and governments. But it also developed its vaccine candidate in record time and has been chugging along through clinical trials.

In evaluating it, many experts warn that it faces too much competition from pharmaceutical giants. Others question the science behind its quick progress. Those fears don’t matter today.

INO stock is up 20% in intraday trading on news it has received $71 million from the U.S. Department of Defense. This money will fund the production of Inovio’s Cellectra 3PSP smart device as well as the procurement of Cellectra 2000 devices. According to a company press release, these devices are capable of delivering INO-4800 — its vaccine candidate — directly into the skin.

The appeal of the Cellectra device is that any healthcare provider or government agency could stockpile large quantities without worrying about maintenance. As President Donald Trump seeks to ramp up his Operation Warp Speed to develop, manufacture and deploy a vaccine, such a stockpile would be critical.

Sure, the criticisms of Inovio remain, but it’s clear those with money are taking its work seriously. As MarketWatch’s Jaimy Lee reported this morning, Inovio has previously received funding from the DOD for its coronavirus vaccine. Results for its Phase 1 trials should be available before the end of June.

With that in mind, know that both INO-4800 and the Cellectra devices represent great potential. If this company can defeat the odds and produce an effective vaccine against the coronavirus, investors will take shares straight to the sky. You don’t want to miss out.

10 Stocks to Buy to Win Like a ‘Robinhood Investor’

[Tuesday, June 23, 10:12 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Don’t discount the power of pandemic-driven trading on popular platforms like Robinhood.

This blog is all about being bullish — about looking for opportunities created by the novel coronavirus. Some days, that means looking for big companies that have fallen hard. Other days, it means examining pandemic-specific plays like vaccine and drug stocks. And perhaps no category of investors embodies such a bullish mindset more than those on Robinhood.

Young adults turned en masse to Robinhood at the start of the lockdown, embracing time-tested ideology like “Don’t fight the Fed.” Day trading became a source of entertainment, particularly as live sporting events disappeared. Many of these young adults look for investment advice on social media platform Reddit, and as Axios’ Dion Rabouin reports, are seen as overconfident and underprepared.

And in recent days, this cohort of retail investors has drawn criticism for chasing up names like Hertz (NYSE:HTZ) and Carnival (NYSE:CCL). The high-profile suicide of one young trader also has many bashing Robinhood.

But as Rabouin highlights, these retail investors are, in many instances, outperforming the professionals. Goldman Sachs has gone so far as to say that the top picks of this cohort are outperforming those of hedge funds, leading analysts to start rounding up data on retail investors’ best-performing ideas. As we shared on this blog last week, via CNBC’s Maggie Fitzgerald (subscription required), Goldman has identified 15 such stocks.

If you still are looking to emulate some of the biggest bulls, here’s a look at the 10 most popular stocks on Robinhood right now.

  • Ford (NYSE:F)
  • General Electric (NYSE:GE)
  • American Airlines (NASDAQ:AAL)
  • Disney (NYSE:DIS)
  • Delta Air Lines (NYSE:DAL)
  • Carnival Cruise Lines (NYSE:CCL)
  • Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT)
  • Aurora Cannabis (NYSE:ACB)
  • Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL)

Stocks Open Higher Tuesday on Renewed Vaccine Hopes

[Tuesday, June 23, 9:31 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Today’s market price action is a tale of two opposing catalysts. The first is that novel coronavirus cases continue to rise as states reopen. Offices, beach vacations and hair salons have all been linked to outbreaks. Now, officials must reckon with public health concerns. China has returned to lockdown mode thanks to new cases in Beijing, and Texas Gov. Greg Abbott said cases are rising at “an unacceptable rate.”

Will this “unacceptable rate” mean a second round of lockdowns and stay-at-home orders? Those fears have weighed on the major indices lately, but there’s a second catalyst.

The race for a novel coronavirus vaccine continues, and investors have something big to cheer about today. Sanofi (NYSE:SNY) announced that it is targeting a “speedier” approval of its vaccine, and it’s also ramping up efforts with Translate Bio (NASDAQ:TBIO). It’s particularly easy to celebrate Sanofi’s success as it is a pharmaceutical giant with a more proven reputation.

So, despite the fears and the rise in cases, stocks are higher on Tuesday morning. The S&P 500, the Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite are all opening in the green.

  • The S&P 500 opened higher by 0.91%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average opened higher by 0.99%
  • The Nasdaq Composite opened higher by 0.67%

Follow the Insiders and Buy Uber Stock Now

[Monday, June 22, 3:00 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Legendary investor Peter Lynch said it best. “Investors might sell their shares for any number of reasons, but they them for only one: They think the price will rise.” With his guiding words in mind, investors should be very curious about recent insider buying in Uber (NYSE:UBER) stock.

According to Barron’s Ed Lin, the ride-hailing company’s newest director just paid $500,000 for 15,740 Uber shares. Robert Eckert — the insider in question — made his purchase at an average per-share price of $31.60. On Monday, shares are up in intraday trading and hovering near $32.70.

Uber has had a rough year — and honestly, a rough time since making its public debut. The business model has been called into question, and the company has found itself in an ongoing legal struggle with California over the classification of its drivers. Plus, amid the novel coronavirus, ride-hailing is simply struggling. Who wants to hop in a stranger’s car and risk getting sick?

Making matters worse, Uber just lost its bid to take over Grubhub (NYSE:GRUB). And some like Apptopia’s Jonathan Kay have been speculating all year that rival Lyft (NASDAQ:LYFT) will soon become the dominant ride-hailing name. Those all sound like good reasons to sell, sell, sell.

Here though, we have Lynch’s famous words. Robert Eckert made the first insider purchase since November — despite all the potential downside catalysts. It’s likely recovery will come to the ride-hailing space, although the timeline is unclear. Knowing that Eckert is bullish on Uber’s long-term outlook is a good sign.

InvestorPlace’s Larry Ramer and Luke Lango agree. Ramer wrote that one big catalyst for Uber is the fact that many consumers will avoid public transporation. Not all commuters will go out and buy cars — many will swap subway rides for Uber rides as businesses return the office. Lango feels similarly. He wrote that ride-hailing is already bouncing back as the economy reopens. He’s calling for shares to hit pre-coronavirus levels very soon.

9 Stocks to Buy for Upcoming Bad Weather

[Monday, June 22, 12:27 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

This year has checked many boxes. Military conflict with Iran. Trade conflict with China. A pandemic. Could things get any worse for investors and consumers? According to a recent note from Michael Arone, the chief investment strategist for the U.S. SPDR business, there’s unfortunately another downside catalyst just around the corner.

Meteorologists are calling for this summer to be hotter than average. Some cities are likely to see “extreme” weather events, such as unusual storms, heat waves and tornadoes. And in the south, where tourism-dependent economies already have struggled thanks to pandemic closures, an unusually bad hurricane season could be coming.

As Arone wrote, one of the dangers of extreme weather is its impact on the economy. Storms that hit one region can tank an area’s small businesses, like what happened in Nashville at the beginning of March. Plus, consumers struggle in hot weather. Productivity drops. Per-capital income similarly drops. Hot weather may make the beach more inviting, but it’s bad for the overall economy.

Up until this point in 2020, the chief investment strategist wrote that weather has had very little impact. Prices for a few agriculture commodities have shifted, but day-to-day life — and the broader economy — have been unscathed. What happens if that all changes? What should individual investors be doing to protect their portfolios.

Well, according to Investopedia’s Barclay Palmer, there are certain stocks that benefit from such extreme weather. If thoughts of unprecedented heat and further economic downturn are making you sweat, consider buying these nine stocks:

  • Home Depot (NYSE:HD)
  • Lowe’s (NYSE:LOW)
  • Walmart (NYSE:WMT)
  • Generac Holdings (NYSE:GNRC)
  • Aecom (NYSE:ACM)
  • Fluor (NYSE:FLR)
  • Panasonic (OTCMKTS:PCRFY)
  • Berkshire Hathaway (NYSE:BRK.A, NYSE:BRK.B)
  • Xylem (NYSE:XYL)

SiNtx Stock Skyrockets Monday on New Coronavirus Data

[Monday, June 22, 11:56 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Vaccines, antiviral drugs, antibody treatments, plasma therapies, a so-called Hemopurifier. You name it, a company is testing it on the novel coronavirus. Today, SiNtx (NASDAQ:SINT) became the next hot company in the news thanks to positive data from its trial of sintered silicon nitride powder against Covid-19. Boy, that was a mouthful.

SiNtx is an original equipment manufacturer that specializes in using silicon nitride — a chemical compound formed by combining the elements silicon and nitride. The company then sinters this compound, heating and pressuring it into a powder. According to many scientists, the sintered form of the compound is higher density and can be used in more demanding capacities.

In normal times — read, before the pandemic — SiNtx works with firms in biomedicine, defense, aerospace and transportation. Its silicon nitride contributes to wound dressings, turbocharger rotors and missile components. But the company knew sintered silicon nitride had virus-fighting properties, and set off to study it against the coronavirus.

Over the weekend, SiNtx reported that in a controlled laboratory setting, the virus behind Covid-19 was “inactivated” once exposed to the silicon nitride powder. More results will be available soon, and tests at outside laboratories will similarly be working to study the compound.

As InvestorPlace Web Editor Nick Clarkson reported this morning, investors are really excited about this crazy science. Shares of SINT stock have soared more than 180% in intraday trading, taking shares above $2. Whether or not sintered silicon nitride powder becomes a mainstream cure, you’re better off keeping this company on your radar.

Stocks Open Lower Monday Despite Recovery Hopes

[Monday, June 22, 9:31 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

It’s a new week on Wall Street, and up until the opening bell, it looked like the sun was shining on Wall Street. Managing Editor John Kilhefner shared on Friday that a fear of missing out on gains would likely drive the major indices higher. But as the bell rang, things headed south. The bulls are simply trying to balance recovery hopes with novel coronavirus fears.

Yes, many Americans were living it up this past weekend, packing up minivans to head to lakes or beaches or state parks. But at the same time, cases of Covid-19 are on the rise in many states. Public health experts are worried about reopening processes and the risks of a second wave.

This week, it’s likely much of that same tug-of-war game will drive the market. Just as cases rise and preppers hunker down, we’re seeing several signs of normal. Economists are expecting new figures on the housing market to come in strong, and we’re already seeing a rebound in retail sales. Plus, Virgin Galactic (NYSE:SPCE) stock is shooting to the moon on a new NASA partnership. Looking at certain areas of the investing world, it’s almost as if the pandemic didn’t happen.

For now, investors are struggling to enjoy the reopening rally. The S&P 500 and the Dow Jones Industrial Average opened in the red, although the Nasdaq Composite managed to start the day in the green.

  • The S&P 500 opened lower by 0.18%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average opened lower by 0.41%
  • The Nasdaq Composite opened higher by 0.05%

Dow Forfeits Early Bull Run as Big Tech Falters, But Indices Post Weekly Gains

[Friday, June 19, 4:38 p.m.]
Contributed by John Kilhefner

Once the bell rung on Wall Street, traders seemed exuberant in contrast to Thursday’s ho-hum day. Investors quickly took profits, however, sending major indices lower, and eventually into the red where all but the tech-centric Nasdaq would end the day. No matter — all of the major indices managed to eke out weekly gains, a positive sign that buyers are beginning to take the wheel.

Today’s downturn was due in no small part to Apple’s (NASDAQ:AAPL) closing of some stores in Florida, Arizona, South Carolina and North Carolina. Apple had recently shuttered these locations but reopened them as the virus appeared to ease. The reason for closing its doors again? Businesses and consumers alike are facing a possible second wave of the novel coronavirus, which stokes unease that another quarantine could be around the corner. In all, Apple revealed it’s shuttering 11 of its stores as cases of Covid-19 begin to spike in areas where restrictions have been eased.

This is in sharp contrast to economic data showing a recovery in retail buying and a flattening in jobless claims. In the week ahead, the WSJ points out that many analysts expect FOMO (or a fear of missing out) to drive stocks in the coming week.

Here’s the tale of the tape on Friday:

  • The S&P 500 gave back 0.56%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed lower by 0.8%
  • The Nasdaq Composite inched higher by 0.03%

The Massive Rally in Gold Is Picking Up Sparkle

[Friday, June 19, 11:58 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Did you ignore InvestorPlace analyst Eric Fry when he warned that soon, investors would be wondering where all the gold went? What about all of his warnings that the world’s richest individuals were starting to hoard gold? Or his urgent messages to consider getting into the bull rally now?

Well, new reporting from Reuters shows that his predictions are coming true. The headline states “World’s Ultra-Wealthy Go for Gold Amid Stimulus Bonanza.” One of the key catalysts behind gold prices that we have discussed in this blog is the precious metal’s role in hedging against inflation. As the Federal Reserve expands an already unprecedented bond-buying program and the U.S. government considers other stimulus measures, many experts are fearful about post-pandemic inflation.

And now, that fear is driving demand for gold. According to the Reuters report, private banks are channeling as much as 10% of their clients’ money into gold. Morgan Stanley even added a 5% allocation to the commodity across all of its models. It turns out the ultra-wealthy among us really are looking to hoard gold.

Gold prices have already been climbing, thanks to a number of factors. We saw a spike early in 2020 after the U.S. military struck and killed Iran’s Qasem Soleimani. We saw another spike early in March, as the novel coronavirus began to make more of a global impact. And lately, we’ve seen a spike in prices as investors fear inflation, social unrest and a second wave of the virus.

That’s why Eric Fry thinks it’s time to add a little bit of gold to your portfolio. It trades around $1,750 now, but analysts are calling for it to hit $1,800, $2,000 or even $3,000 before the rally is over. Don’t miss out.

10 Stocks to Buy to Pandemic-Proof Your Portfolio

[Friday, June 19, 11:21 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

It seems like these days you’re either too scared to get into the market or you’re so confident you’re chasing every high-flying penny stock you can find. But what about investors who want a cautious approach that’s still profitable? According to InvestorPlace’s Will Ashworth, that’s not too much to ask for. In fact, he has 10 stocks perfect for investors looking to protect their portfolios from disaster.

Ashworth’s approach involves looking for what he calls cash-rich stocks. These are companies that convert as much free cash flow as possible from net income and have more cash than debt on their balance sheets. He wrote today that these are the best companies when it comes to generating cash.

So whether you’re trying to protect your portfolio from a long-lasting recovery, a second wave of the novel coronavirus or whatever other apocalypse keeps you up at night, these cash-rich stocks are a great place to start. Plus, you’ll get exposure to solid businesses across different sectors.

Here are Ashworth’s top 10 recommendations:

  • Facebook (NASDAQ:FB)
  • Electronic Arts (NASDAQ:EA)
  • Alibaba (NYSE:BABA)
  • Monster Beverage (NASDAQ:MNST)
  • Texas Pacific Land Trust (NYSE:TPL)
  • SEI Investments (NASDAQ:SEIC)
  • Intuitive Surgical (NASDAQ:ISRG)
  • Veeva Systems (NYSE:VEEV)
  • Universal Display (NASDAQ:OLED)

Stocks Open in the Green on Friday

[Friday, June 19, 9:31 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

It looks like bulls are gearing up for another day of gains right before the weekend. After a choppy day of trading on Thursday, stocks opened solidly higher on Friday. We’ve seen this one before — who wants to try and relax all weekend with a suffering market on their mind?

Not much changed overnight, but the optimism is back. Novel coronavirus cases are still climbing in some states and the Federal Reserve is still buying up corporate debt. Will we get any new market-moving headlines next week?

For now, the S&P 500, Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite are all in the green. Investors will have to wait and see how the rest of the day — and the struggling reopening rally — will play out.

  • The S&P 500 opened higher by 1.17%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average opened higher by 1.21%
  • The Nasdaq Composite opened higher by 1%

4 Education Stocks to Buy for the Remote Learning Future

[Thursday, June 18, 4:25 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Parents are frazzled. Teachers are frustrated. Some students are thriving, others are falling behind. The novel coronavirus is calling the shots in education, and this spring showed just how unprepared some schools were to shift learning from the classroom to video calls. However, companies are rising up to fill this void, offering solutions to make remote learning easier and even fun.

Sure, a big question with education stocks is whether or not schools will resume in-person education in the fall. But even if they do, many parents will opt to keep their children at home if they are particularly at risk or just uncomfortable with the idea. Plus, how do you stay six feet apart in a kindergarten classroom? With this in mind, InvestorPlace’s Faisal Humayun took a deep dive into education stocks that will benefit from growing innovation in digital learning.

Here are four top names he’s recommending now:

  • Chegg (NYSE:CHGG)
  • K12 Inc (NYSE:LRN)
  • Arco Platform Limited (NASDAQ:ARCE)
  • New Oriental Education and Technology (NYSE:EDU)

Stocks Close Slightly Higher Despite Pandemic Fears

[Thursday, June 18, 4:01 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Is there any news here? After reopening plans went into place around the United States, cases of the novel coronavirus are surging once again. Some states are hitting record highs of new cases each day. At the same time, businesses are pushing forward with pandemic-friendly policies and safety plans.

Elsewhere in stock market, investors are digesting the May retail sales report, this morning’s jobless numbers and the Federal Reserve’s mixed bag of plans. Some are spooked over the Fed’s plan to keep near-zero interest rates in place through 2022. But others are focusing more on unprecedented corporate bond-buying policies that are boosting the debt market.

With the exception of the Dow Jones Industrial Average, bulls managed to pull off a slight win on Thursday. The S&P 500 and the Nasdaq Composite closed in the green.

  • The S&P 500 closed higher by 0.06%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed lower by 0.15%
  • The Nasdaq Composite closed higher by 0.33%

Walmart Stock Keeps Improving Its Bull Case

[Thursday, June 18, 2:35 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Another day, another victory by Walmart (NYSE:WMT). The company has found great success amid the novel coronavirus, as its brick-and-mortar locations drew crowds looking for essential items. Its digital business saw similar success as consumers stocked up — and several even turned to splurging on household items and comfort foods. Lately, a series of announcements has positioned Walmart as a likely leader as the U.S. emerges from lockdowns.

We recently reported in this blog about Walmart’s initiative to partner with ThredUp to enter the resale market. And even more recently, we wrote abut the company’s move to partner with Shopify (NYSE:SHOP). The latter partnership is a clear jab at e-commerce giant Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN). The deal will bring 1,200 sellers to Walmart’s online platform, mirroring Amazon’s marketplace for third-party sellers and some of the unique products it has via those relationships.

Today, Walmart is taking another big jab at its rival. According to Retail Dive’s Rebecca Pifer, Walmart has acquired the technology platforms of CareZone, a startup that helps people manage medications and chronic illnesses. Walmart has expressed concerns about its shoppers delaying prescription refills and healthcare amid the pandemic, and it manages a generic prescription program and Health Center clinic. As Pifer wrote, Walmart lost out on PillPack to Amazon back in 2018.

Walmart doesn’t want to miss out on anything these days. Fashion resale, third-party sellers, healthcare. Walmart wants to be wherever Amazon already is. InvestorPlace’s David Moadel, and many other experts, have commented on the stability of WMT stock — its dividend, its long track record of slow-and-steady growth. For many reasons, it’s a great investment. But now, it also might be becoming “sexy” through new acquisitions and Amazon-focused competition. Keep a close eye on this company.

Aethlon Medical Stock Surges 90% on Coronavirus News

[Thursday, June 18, 2:10 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Vaccines, antiviral drugs, antibody therapies, you name it, researchers are working on it. The fight against the novel coronavirus is attracting serious funding and a lot of investor attention, but there are still breakthroughs to be made. Today, Aethlon Medical (NASDAQ:AEMD) is entering the race, and shares of AEMD stock are up more than 90% in intraday trading on the news.

So what exactly is Aethlon Medical? The company is small — shares trade for less than $3 and its market capitalization is just $25 million. It’s a clinical-stage biotech working to treat infectious diseases and cancers with immunotherapeutic products, like its Hemopurifier device. Aethlon is also the majority owner of Exosome Sciences, which works to diagnose and monitor life-threatening diseases through biomarkers. Today, the Hemopurifier is thrusting AEMD into the spotlight.

Essentially, the device “sucks” the virus out of a patient’s blood, removing it entirely. According to Aethlon Medical, it can circulate out toxins, cancer-causing exosomes and viruses. It has yet to receive U.S. Food and Drug Administration approval for any indications, but it has clinical trials for Ebola, Hepatitis C and HIV. As of Thursday, it also received FDA approval for a feasibility study to examine the Hemopurifier with Covid-19 patients.

According to a company press release, a feasibility study is the device equivalent of a Phase I drug trial. Aethlon will work to enroll as many as 40 subjects in the study, all who have tested positive for Covid-19, have been admitted to an ICU and suffered lung injury. Hopefully, researchers will find that the Hemopurifier can remove the virus causing Covid-19 from the subjects’ bodies.

Investors shouldn’t dive in head first here, but the rise in AEMD stock is worth noting. Its Hemopurifier device has long drawn attention as an innovative and industry-changing piece of equipment, and hopefully studies related to the coronavirus will shed light on its effectiveness. As with any other drug or vaccine company, good news could send shares skyrocketing.

10 Robotics Stocks to Buy for Futuristic Gains

[Thursday, June 18, 1:01 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

For many investors, the novel coronavirus has highlighted glaring issues in the supply chain. When workers at Tyson Foods’s (NYSE:TSN) and Smithfield plants contracted Covid-19, the choice seemingly became forcing employees to produce meat products in dangerous conditions or risk massive meat shortages. Less essential factories, like auto plants, simply closed down.

But what if, especially in extreme circumstances like a pandemic, human workers could find help from robot friends? That’s exactly what Boston Dynamics is hoping to determine with its robot dog, Spot. According to Emerging Tech Brew’s Ryan Duffy, Spot is all about taking over “ugly” and “dangerous” job duties. Before the pandemic, that largely meant certain construction, mining and electrical power generation jobs. In the future, though, could that mean stepping in when a virus pops up?

Right now, as Duffy writes, it’s time for Spot to prove itself. The cute-but-mechanical dog comes with a $74,500 price tag, and will need to show that it’s capable of handling existing dangerous tasks. However, the potential here is massive. Could automation be the key to protecting the supply chain during inevitable future pandemics? Think about it. Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) has been using a fleet of robots for years to help with physically taxing warehouse work.

If you’re excited about the potential here, I have some bad news. Boston Dynamics is still a private company, so you can’t pick up shares to bet on Spot. However, if you’re broadly bullish on the innovation that robotics companies present, InvestorPlace’s Vince Martin has 10 great alternatives. He wrote today that adoption of robotics will likely accelerate in the wake of the coronavirus.

So what sort of companies is Martin recommending? His list includes smaller companies that are not yet household names. But he’s confident in the coming years, giants like Alphabet (NASDAQ:GOOG, NASDAQ:GOOGL) and Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) will enter the race. Here are his top picks now:

  • ABB Ltd. (NYSE:ABB)
  • iRobot (NASDAQ:IRBT)
  • Stereotaxis (NYSEMKT:STXS)
  • FLIR Systems (NASDAQ:FLIR)
  • AeroVironmnent (NASDAQ:AVAV)
  • Trimble (NASDAQ:TRMB)
  • Intuitive Surgical (NASDAQ:ISRG)
  • Globus Medical (NYSE:GMED)
  • Daifuku (OTCMKTS:DFKCY)
  • Global X Robotics & Artificial Intelligence ETF (NASDAQ:BOTZ)

11 Tech Stocks to Buy to Profit From Pandemic Trends

[Thursday, June 18, 12:08 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Saying that the novel coronavirus has disrupted Americans’ daily lives is quite the understatement. The pandemic changed what we know about work, education, commerce and public health. There are changes just now beginning to unfold — and we don’t even have an effective vaccine yet. Investors have had opportunities to profit from hot and volatile stocks that capitalize on these changes, but as states begin to reopen, many are likely looking for more stable ways to invest in pandemic tech.

We’ve seen video conferencing come out of nowhere. Electronic signatures. Augmented reality filters for social media platforms. Massive streaming media partnerships. What will last when some semblance of “normal” returns to the market? And what hot tech will suddenly fade away?

According to researchers at Morgan Stanley, it’s important to analyze what specific trends a company benefits from. They highlight what they see as the largest three: e-commerce, digital entertainment and contactless payment.

From there, researchers picked a handful of companies benefiting from each trend. These are names that will also continue to benefit as these trends accelerate after the pandemic eases. Here are the top 11 recommendations from Morgan Stanley (subscription required):

  • Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN)
  • Chewy (NYSE:CHWY)
  • eBay (NASDAQ:EBAY)
  • Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX)
  • Spotify (NYSE:SPOT)
  • T-Mobile (NASDAQ:TMUS)
  • Activision Blizzard (NASDAQ:ATVI)
  • Visa (NYSE:V)
  • PayPal (NASDAQ:PYPL)
  • Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL)
  • Mastercard (NYSE:MA)

Spotify Stock Is a Pitch-Perfect Buy Now

[Thursday, June 18, 11:17 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Spotify (NYSE:SPOT) has been music to investors’ ears these last few weeks. And to many, that reality is far from initial predictions. Spotify is all about music on the go. Plug in your headphones or earbuds of choice and hop on the subway. Or, stream your favorite pump-up playlist while you’re at the gym. Since the novel coronavirus came to town, there hasn’t been a lot of commuting or working out going on.

But nonetheless, consumers are streaming and Spotify is booming. Shares are up another 10% in intraday trading on Thursday.

One of the initial catalysts for Spotify stock has been that, while stuck at home, consumers are listening to music. Early reports from the company suggest that time cooking is now accompanied by food podcasts or kitchen-friendly playlists. It makes sense — I know I’m tired of just listening to my keyboard click and clack all day.

It also became clear that podcasts were bringing great value to the company. Axios’ Sara Fischer reported that consumers were abandoning traditional audio streaming for podcasts — especially those that incorporated video. Spotify soared when it announced Joe Rogan would be bringing his highly followed Joe Rogan Experience exclusively to its platform. Plus, his podcast would be one of the first to combine audio and video streaming for the company.

That move solidified Spotify’s role in the podcast world. But things are heating up even more today. Spotify announced new exclusive podcast deals that are stirring up excitement. A first deal partners with Kim Kardashian West on a new podcast about criminal justice. The podcast will solely be available on Spotify, and will look at wrongful convictions. Benzinga’s Neer Varshney speculates that this topic will have a large audience in light of the Black Lives Matter movement gaining mainstream support.

But that’s not all for Spotify. It also announced a deal with Warner Bros. and DC Entertainment to produce an exclusive series of scripted podcasts about Batman, Wonder Woman and other associated characters. According to Variety’s Todd Spangler, this deal will also bring exclusive podcasts from the Looney Tunes brand and TV shows like Supernatural.

Spotify is the go-to music streaming platform for many consumers. As it ups its stake in the podcast business, expect it to further its leadership there as well.

Stocks Open Lower Thursday on Weekly Jobless Claims

[Thursday, June 18, 9:31 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

It’s a tough morning for investors. Just yesterday, the market struggled to balance rising novel coronavirus cases with signs of economic recovery. Today, things feel even more uneven after reports that another 1.5 million Americans filed for initial unemployment benefits last week. This number was slightly higher than many economists predicted.

For every step the economy take forward, the pandemic drags us all two steps back. Will it be a V-shaped recovery? Or will we see many more months — if not years — of economic pain as a result of Covid-19? It’s strange to think we’ve been pondering this same question for several weeks now.

On Thursday, the bulls took the back seat. The S&P 500Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite are all opening in the red.

  • The S&P 500 opened lower by 0.53%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average opened lower by 0.78%
  • The Nasdaq Composite opened lower by 0.17%

3 Safe Stocks to Buy to Protect Your Portfolio Now

[Wednesday, June 17, 4:17 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Novel coronavirus cases are spiking — and in some instances hitting record highs — in states that have reopened. The Federal Reserve anticipates near-zero interest rates through 2022. President Donald Trump is stirring up tensions within the U.S. and abroad, and fears over U.S.-China trade relations are once again front and center. Will the U.S. delist all Chinese companies from the Nasdaq and New York Stock Exchange?

If you’ve been watching the news, your head is likely spinning. As we’ve previously reported in this blog, there are seemingly infinite factors driving the day-to-day performance of the major indices. It may seem impossible to buy stocks with so much volatility in the market.

But don’t despair. InvestorPlace’s Ian Cooper understands the fear that many investors likely have right now. It’s hard to find stocks that will protect your portfolio from wild volatility. That’s why he has three recommendations (including an exchange-traded fund) to help you right now.

Here are his top three picks:

  • Ultra VIX Short-Term Futures ETF (NYSEARCA:UVXY)
  • Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN)
  • Clorox (NYSE:CLX)

Stocks Struggle and Close Lower on Wednesday

[Wednesday, June 17, 4:01 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Remember the childhood game of plucking petals off a flower, chanting “he loves me, he loves me not”? It seems investors are playing a similar game, wobbling back and forth on their commitment to a reopening rally. This morning, we wrote that stocks were headed higher on good news from retail sales, the Federal Reserve and President Donald Trump’s administration.

But with a pluck of a petal, stocks headed south. Last week, renewed fears of a second wave of the novel coronavirus dominated the market. Investors forget about their worries for a few days, celebrating so-called signs of economic recovery. Now it appears that the panic is back, as several U.S. states continue to report surges in cases.

Will the market love us tomorrow? Who knows. For now, the S&P 500 and the Dow Jones Industrial Average closed in the red. The tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite managed to stay afloat in the green.

  • The S&P 500 closed lower by 0.36%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed lower by 0.65%
  • The Nasdaq Composite closed higher by 0.15%

Fintech Bulls Should Be Hot on the Quicken Loans IPO

[Wednesday, June 17, 3:25 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Prior to the novel coronavirus, fintech stocks were hot. Most investors knew that they addressed real problems in various financial services, and that the growth potential was massive. But the pandemic thrust big names like Square (NYSE:SQ), PayPal (NASDAQ:PYPL) and Intuit (NASDAQ:INTU) into the spotlight. These companies offered cashless and contactless payment solutions. They acted as banks, helping small businesses get loans through the Paycheck Protection Program. In short, fintech leaders went from the fringes to the mainstream.

That bodes well for the upcoming IPO of Quicken Loans. According to some calculations, Quicken Loans is the leading mortgage lender in the U.S. And as InvestorPlace’s Joel Baglole wrote today, its IPO value is likely to be in the tens of billions of dollars. That’s why he marked the fintech company as one of the top initial public offerings to watch for the rest of 2020.

But there’s also more to the story. As Housing Wire’s Julian Hebron wrote, this is a key case of a fintech disruptor hitting the public markets. Using numbers from the International Monetary Fund, Quicken Loans funded more mortgages than industry stalwart Wells Fargo (NYSE:WFC).

And if the Quicken Loans IPO is successful, which Baglole and many other experts expect it will be, Hebron thinks it will set the stage for other fintech IPOs. Robinhood has long been flirting with a public debut. And Revolut — a British fintech that handles banking services — is also raising funding. Quicken Loans will definitely influence any IPO decisions from this star duo.

Keep a close eye on Quicken Loans. According to CNBC’s Leslie Picker, it could easily be the largest IPO in 2020. And beyond that, it represents a big shift in momentum for fintech. Bulls, don’t miss out.

5 Retail Stocks to Buy as Consumers Embrace Suburbia

[Wednesday, June 17, 2:54 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Cities have long represented shiny company headquarters, open-concept offices, high-rise apartment buildings and the luxuries of vegan and gluten-free bakeshops. But during a pandemic, cities take on a new threat factor. There’s no “great outdoors” to safely explore. Plus, sky-high rent prices no longer make sense when you’re working from home. This reality has spurred what the Washington Post’s Marc Fisher, Paul Schwartzman and Ben Weissenbach have dubbed the “Great American Migration.”

Certainly, companies are playing a big role in this too. Twitter (NYSE:TWTR) and Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) are exploring policies to allow employees to work from home forever. Now that jobs once reserved for San Francisco and New York City can be done anywhere, consumers are packing up and heading to suburbia. It makes sense. If nothing is tying you down to your city, moving somewhere with more space is safer. It can also potentially save you money — why pay astronomical rent prices in a city you no longer have to commute and work in?

As with any trend, certain companies will profit. That’s why Jefferies analysts are rounding up retailers likely to benefit from the “doorman to cul-de-sac” switch. Here are their top five recommendations (subscription required):

  • Lowe’s (NYSE:LOW)
  • Home Depot (NYSE:HD)
  • Best Buy (NYSE:BBY)
  • Floor & Decor (NYSE:FND)
  • Wayfair (NYSE:F)

Here’s one more note. According to Jefferies, Williams-Sonoma (NYSE:WSM), At Home (NYSE:HOME) and Tractor Supply (NASDAQ:TSCO) could also benefit from this trend. However, the firm only has hold ratings on these three companies now.

Yelp Stock Is a Buy for its Pandemic Innovation

[Wednesday, June 17, 1:15 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Yelp (NYSE:YELP) has not had an easy year in 2020. Shares are down approximately 30% — which makes sense considering the amount of restaurants and non-essential businesses that either closed or saw steep drops in sales these last few months. But Yelp knows the businesses on its platform need help, and that consumers are looking for information, so it’s unrolling some attractive new features.

Beyond being a place for creative and often over-the-top reviews, Yelp has a reservations platform and gives consumers a chance to browser through crowd-sourced information like menus and restaurant photos. According to one Seeking Alpha contributor, Yelp has three income streams, including advertising revenue and subscription fees. That same contributor is very bullish on YELP stock — despite its recent downturn, he thinks investors can see some nice gains if they buy and hold onto shares through 2020 and beyond.

New reporting from Axios’ Ina Fried should strengthen that bull case even more. She wrote yesterday that Yelp is appealing to consumers who are braving reopened restaurants. Are you looking for a cafe with dine-in seating? What about a restaurant known for having lots of space? And are you interested in knowing which cleaning protocols a staff is following?

Yelp is hoping to provide just that. It is adding a section to restaurant pages for staff members to update with their Covid-19 details. It’s also rolling out a “waitlist” feature, as limited restaurant capacity is likely keep lines high at in-demand businesses. Businesses that show consumers they understand the altered dining landscape are likely to win favor, which is why Yelp’s offerings are so important.

Sure, this little solution isn’t likely to move mountains, but it will help Yelp’s rebound case. And right now, every little detail matters as the economy climbs back from rock bottom.

Buy Merck and Mylan to Benefit from Coronavirus Cure

[Wednesday, June 17, 12:30 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Yesterday, big news broke about the novel coronavirus, but investors didn’t seem to care. According to Bloomberg’s John Lauerman, a study out of the University of Oxford found that a cheap steroid, dexamethasone, showed “life-saving promise” in hospitalized patients. The key for investors is that pharmaceutical giants Merck (NYSE:MRK) and Mylan (NASDAQ:MYL) both produce this drug.

Dexamethasone received approval several decades ago, and is now marketed for rheumatism, asthma, allergies and chemotherapy-triggered nausea. And as Lauerman points out, a full course of the drug costs roughly $5. BioPharma Dive’s Jonathan Gardner said that in some instances, the dose used in this trial would cost just $1 or $2 per patient.

Researchers initially began studying the drug in a massive move to find potential treatments for the novel coronavirus and its many symptoms. Scientists began studying existing drugs, like dexamethasone, to see if they would be effective in mitigating any Covid-19 symptoms. To date, the only drug that has received approval is Gilead’s (NASDAQ:GILD) remdesivir, so the search continues on.

Results found that dexamethasone reduced deaths by a third among patients on ventilators and by a fifth among those receiving oxygen. This should give consumers a lot of hope, as it helps the survival chances of even the sickest patients. As POLITICO’s Sarah Owermohle makes clear, this is the first drug found to reduce the risk of death.

For investors, a big concern is likely the cost of dexamethasone. The same cause for excitement — its cheap per-dose price — also is a limiting factor in the revenue Mylan and Merck can bring in. However, that doesn’t mean investors should check out. As this study gains more attention and more Covid-19 patients receive dexamethasone as part of their treatment, the companies behind the drug could receive celebrity status. One way they could benefit is simply heightened attention and the market’s willingness to bid them up as a reward.

It’s too early to tell exactly what will happen, but keep a close eye on MRK and MYL shares now.

15 Online Retail Stocks to Buy for the Rest of 2020

[Wednesday, June 17, 11:34 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

InvestorPlace Markets Analyst Luke Lango said it best. Online retail stocks really have been on fire so far in 2020 — and they’re not stopping anytime soon.

The rise of e-commerce has been unfolding since Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) became a star, but this megatrend has only been accelerating in the last few years. Plus, the novel coronavirus did nothing but help. Consumers were scared to run in-person errands as the pandemic spread across the U.S. And even if they wanted to go out and about, non-essential retailers were closed for weeks.

As a result, American shoppers turned to buying cars, pet food, clothing and even furniture online. As Lango wrote yesterday, the Amplify Online Retail ETF (NASDAQ:IBUY) is up 30% in 2020. If you find yourself questioning whether e-commerce will take a back seat as states reopen, here’s a reminder. Americans love convenience. And at its heart, e-commerce is all about convenience.

If you’re ready to embrace this trend as e-commerce keeps heating up, here are Lango’s top recommendations:

  • Wayfair (NYSE:W)
  • Etsy (NASDAQ:ETSY)
  • Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN)
  • Chewy (NYSE:CHWY)
  • Revolve (NYSE:RVLV)
  • eBay (NASDAQ:EBAY)
  • Blue Apron (NYSE:APRN)
  • MercadoLibre (NASDAQ:MELI)
  • Carvana (NYSE:CVNA)
  • Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA)
  • Farfetch (NYSE:FTCH)
  • Stitch Fix (NASDAQ:SFIX)
  • PayPal (NASDAQ:PYPL)

3 Airline Stocks to Buy as Europe Reopens for Travel

[Wednesday, June 17, 10:21 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

You likely know that airline stocks are a hot topic right now, but chances are, you’re still looking for the right strategy to enter this hard-hit sector. U.S. passenger carriers like American Airlines  (NASDAQ:AAL) have drawn attention as they begin to restore flight capacity for the summer. However, the future isn’t all rosy as many reports indicate massive layoffs are coming to the industry in just a few months. What does that mean for investors?

According to InvestorPlace’s Laura Hoy, it means that U.S. airline stocks don’t offer any real opportunity right here. But she still does see a pent-up demand catalyst affecting travel, especially as many consumers lust for summer vacations. In an effort to find fair comparisons to the likes of American and United Airlines (NASDAQ:UAL), Hoy headed across the Atlantic to look at European carriers.

And there, she found opportunity. Just like in the U.S., many European nations are beginning to reopen and allow some travel. Quarantine restrictions for travelers vary, but it’s like that within the European Union at least, summer vacations will be back on the calendar. To capitalize on that reality, Hoy picked three airline stocks likely to serve European customers this summer.

Here’s what she’s recommending now:

  • Ryanair Holdings (NASDAQ:RYAAY)
  • Wizz Air (OTCMKTS:WZZAF)
  • Delta Air Lines (NYSE:DAL)

Stocks Open Higher Wednesday for Fourth Straight Day

[Wednesday, June 17, 9:31 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Not much has changed on Wall Street, but that’s not stopping this rally. Last week, a surge in novel coronavirus cases and guidance from the Federal Reserve spooked investors into launching a massive selloff. But since Friday, stocks have been ticking higher once again.

Sure, we’ve had a great retail sales report and the Fed keeps working its bond-buying magic, but the catalysts behind the selloff remain in place. For right now, stocks are up on Wednesday and ready to keep charting gains. Will tomorrow’s jobless report shake things up again?

It’s too early to tell. For now, the S&P 500Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite all are opening in the green.

  • The S&P 500 opened higher by 0.34%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average opened higher by 0.18%
  • The Nasdaq Composite opened higher by 0.48%

Stocks Close Higher Tuesday Amid Renewed Rally

[Tuesday, June 16, 4:01 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Cases of the novel coronavirus may still be climbing across the United States and the rest of the world, but it looks the reopening rally has regained its speed. Stocks are up and the major indices just keep climbing higher.

This morning, we reported that a rebound in retail sales was helping turn things around. It’s also important to remember yesterday’s move by the Federal Reserve to begin buying individual corporate bonds. There’s a lot going on in the mark to keep equities high.

Oh, bullish investors have one more thing to like. A new report suggests that President Donald Trump’s administration is considering $1 trillion in infrastructure stimulus spending. Such a move would boost a handful of industries and certainly help the economy.

Altogether, there’s enough to send the major indices upwards. The S&P 500Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite all closed Tuesday in the green.

  • The S&P 500 closed higher by 1.90%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed higher by 2.04%
  • The Nasdaq Composite closed higher by 1.75%

Buy Thor Industries and Winnebago Stock for an Adventure

[Tuesday, June 16, 12:55 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Some consumers have had enough of the novel coronavirus, but they aren’t ready for large crowds or even pre-pandemic socializing. Just think about it. You don’t want to get sick — or get anyone else sick. At the same time, your back hurts from working on your couch all day and you’re craving some fresh air. Apparently, this line of thinking is making one industry in particular a big winner.

Recent reports have focused on consumers buying RVs in record number. Existing RV owners are hoping to get more use out of the vehicles this year, as hotels, airlines and cruises are out of the question for many families. Other consumers are deciding that this summer is the time to buy — and according to Business Insider’s Brittany Chang, demand isn’t slowing down. Demand for Airstream RVs — a brand owned by Thor Industries (NYSE:THO) — is so high that the company is struggling to keep up.

The safety argument makes a lot of sense. You can travel alone, with your family or quarantine friend group, and see sites across the U.S. And unlike with various other forms of travel, your exposure to others is much lower.

Sure, it’s likely that as pandemic fears ease (likely with the commercialization of a vaccine), that RVs will lose the coronavirus attraction. But for right now, demand is growing and THO and Winnebago (NYSE:WGO) are winning. That’s something investors can’t deny.

Take a look at all the consumer surveys, consider the safety and relaxation offered by a campground and just maybe add some THO or WGO shares to your portfolio now.

Bulls Should Keep a Close Eye on These 5 Biotech IPOs

[Tuesday, June 16, 10:40 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

The IPO market just keeps delivering after a weeks-long hiatus. This week, there’s two reasons for bullish investors to buy into the initial public offering hype.

Bulls’ first reason for cheer is the same as in weeks prior. The stock market saw some companies delay highly anticipated IPOs due to the novel coronavirus, and other set-to-IPO companies are now simply struggling to exist. Things are turning around in recent weeks thanks to the debuts of Warner Music Group (NASDAQ:WMG), Vroom (NASDAQ:VRM) and Nikola Motors (NASDAQ:NKLA). The other positive is that this week marks a major move for the biotech sector. Five new offerings — the entirety of this week’s IPOs — are coming from the healthcare space.

Why does that matter? Well, as we’ve previously reported in this blog, the healthcare sector has had a hard year. Sure, companies that dove into developing vaccines or drugs for Covid-19 have largely met success, but other sector players aren’t so lucky. Labs were shut down, clinical trials were delayed. Market attention simply turned away from cancer and rare diseases and focused on the pandemic.

These new five biotech IPOs show that the market’s appetite is changing. Yesterday, Royalty Pharma’s (NASDAQ:RPRX) entrance to the public markets saw it become the largest new deal year-to-date. This New York-based company buys royalty interests in marketed and late-stage biopharma products.

Although it’s unclear if the other four deals will meet the same success, bulls should keep a close on the market. Next up are Forma Therapeutics under ticker FMTX, a company that develops drugs for specific blood cancers; Genetron Holdings under ticker GTH, a Chinese cancer diagnostics provider; Repare Therapeutics under ticker RPTX, a preclinical oncology biotech and Progenity under ticker PROG, a fertility and prenatal screening biotech.

Stocks Open Higher Tuesday on Record Retail Sales

[Tuesday, June 16, 9:31 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Well, President Donald Trump said it’s going to be a “BIG DAY” for the stock market, so investors better take note. Stock futures are headed sharply higher on Tuesday after a record jump in retail sales growth painted a sunnier picture of the United States’ reopening.

So what’s the report all about? Well, in May, retail sales jumped 17.7%. This figure accounts for all sorts of purchases, from clothing and accessories to musical instruments and book stores. Back in March, when the novel coronavirus began to destroy the U.S. economy, many experts were worried about consumer spending. Retail sales fell, as many Americans lost their jobs or started saving for the unknown. But it’s hard to talk about a V-shaped recovery when no one is spending.

On Tuesday, this retail sales surprise really gave investors something to celebrate. Fears that the pandemic would have long-lasting impacts have weighed on the stock market these last few days, so this sign of recovery is moving mountains. The S&P 500Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite are all well in the green.

  • The S&P 500 opened higher by 2.73%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average opened higher by 3.19%
  • The Nasdaq Composite opened higher by 2.43%

7 Chinese Stocks to Buy Despite Pandemic Volatility

[Monday, June 15, 4:46 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

It’s been a tough season for Chinese stocks. Trade tensions between the United States and China are caught in a loop — things ease, and then they spike again. After the novel coronavirus emerged from Wuhan, hard-hit equities fell even further, despite company fundamentals or growth promises. Perhaps nothing can move sentiment more than a pandemic.

Sure, we’re seeing a reopening rally distract investors, but that hasn’t erased the volatility for Chinese stocks. One outcome of the pandemic has been the trade deal’s return to the spotlight. Now, some lawmakers are supporting a bill that would delist foreign companies from the New York Stock Exchange and Nasdaq Exchange that fail to meet certain accounting practices.

Although this bill was targeted at the likes of Luckin Coffee (NASDAQ:LK), it is having an impact on solid names like Alibaba (NYSE:BABA).

Through this volatility, InvestorPlace’s Tezcan Gecgil sees a real buying opportunity. She wrote today that while volatility is likely to continue over the next few weeks, particularly as China returns to strict lockdown protocols, Chinese stocks are worth of investor attention right now.

Here’s what Gecgil is recommending:

  • Alibaba (NYSE:BABA)
  • Baozun (NASDAQ:BZUN)
  • Tencent (OTCMKTS:TCEHY)
  • Weibo (NASDAQ:WB)
  • ZTO Express (NYSE:ZTO)

The Fed Saves the Day and Sends Stocks Higher

[Monday, June 15, 4:01 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

The Federal Reserve can’t make more Americans follow social distancing guidelines or cure the novel coronavirus, but it can ease stock market woes. And it did just that on Monday, reversing a panic-driven downturn caused by a spike in new cases.

So what exactly did the Fed do? According to Yahoo Finance’s Brian Cheung, it announced a plan to buy individual corporate bonds as part of a new corporate bond portfolio. This is an expansion of its plans to backstop the corporate debt market, as many companies continue to struggle from the far-reaching impacts of the pandemic.

Unlike other recent Fed actions — like forecasting near-zero rates through 2022 — this action seems to have a positive impact. The S&P 500Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite all are closing in the green on Monday.

  • The S&P 500 closed higher by 0.83%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed higher by 0.62%
  • The Nasdaq Composite closed higher by 1.43%

Buy Eli Lilly Stock for Growing Coronavirus Potential

[Monday, June 15, 2:13 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Eli Lilly (NYSE:LLY) is a massive player in the pharmaceutical space. Its famous drugs include leading treatments for depression, lung cancer, diabetes and erectile dysfunction. The company has a sizable market capitalization over $130 billion — Eli Lilly truly puts the “big” in Big Pharma. But it isn’t sitting out the race to fight the novel coronavirus, jumping in alongside smaller biotech startups.

We have previously recommended LLY stock in this blog for its coronavirus potential, and today, InvestorPlace analyst Louis Navellier shared his recommendation. He likes this duality between Eli Lilly’s Big Pharma reputation and cutting-edge research. The company already is working on two antibody treatments through partnerships with AbCellera and Junshi Biosciences. Fortunately for LLY shareholders, it’s already progressing with human trials.

In short, Eli Lilly wasn’t lagging in the race. But new reporting from Barron’s Bill Alpert highlights another key way the company is looking to fight Covid-19.

On Monday, Eli Lilly confirmed it was studying its arthritis drug Olumiant — which has already received approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and other international agencies — as part of a program to moderate coronavirus symptoms. An artificial intelligence firm BenevolentAI identified that Olumiant could potentially help keep patients off of ventilators.

Now, based on this inquiry, Eli Lilly is sponsoring a 400-patient trial to see if Olumiant truly can help coronavirus patients. Regardless of the outcome, it’s clear Eli Lilly is exactly where it needs to be.

Walmart and Shopify Are Heating Up E-Commerce

[Monday, June 15, 12:44 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Walmart (NYSE:WMT) and Shopify (NYSE:SHOP) have both been solid companies in 2020, although Shopify’s year-to-date gain of 100% makes it the clear winner. On Monday, news that the duo is partnering on an e-commerce initiative has shares up in intraday trading.

Walmart is a giant retailer, and WMT stock benefited earlier in the spring as consumers rushed to stock up on essential items like groceries. At the same time, Walmart’s smart pivot to e-commerce saw digital sales grow 74% in the first quarter. What’s more, a new partnership with ThredUp has sparked excitement that Walmart understands what is and isn’t working in apparel retail. Shopify, a provider of platforms and other solutions for smaller businesses, has soared in 2020 as it helped a variety of brands survive despite novel coronavirus lockdowns.

Together, Walmart and Shopify are now looking to change the e-commerce game and compete against the likes of Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) and Target (NYSE:TGT). According to Retail Dive’s Daphne Howland, Walmart will now welcome 1,200 sellers from Shopify to its third-party platform by the end of the year. This will help Walmart as the company expands its unique products — and it shows Walmart is taking a page from Amazon’s book. Shopify investors are also excited, as the deal means more exposure for the e-commerce company.

Right now, Howland emphasizes that because it’s unclear which sellers Walmart will welcome, it’s hard to predict exactly how beneficial the deal will be. For now, though, it’s a promising partnership. Sellers will not have to pay just to list, but each sale through Walmart’s platform will earn WMT a so-called referral fee.

Investors now should be even more bullish on Walmart and Shopify, as these two companies clearly have what it takes as the world of retail transforms. Plus, according to InvestorPlace’s Josh Enomoto, WMT stock also offers even the most traditional investors something to like. That’s because it has a solid dividend and a powerful reputation with American consumers.

15 Stocks to Buy to Invest Like a Robinhood Winner

[Monday, June 15, 12:10 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

An odd trend is emerging on Wall Street. Since March, we’ve talked at length about the number of Americans turning to bread making, TV streaming and at-home exercising. But plenty of other consumers decided to open Robinhood accounts and explore the world of retail investing.

This trend has driven some beaten-down stocks to the moon, as small-scale investors hop on the reopening rally bandwagon. Some investors are so confident in the post-pandemic future that they’re chasing Hertz (NYSE:HTZ) higher. Might I remind you that it filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protections just a few weeks ago — all those equity investors are likely to get wiped out.

But not all of retail investors’ ideas are as skepticism-inducing as Hertz. Some of the most popular stocks on Robinhood’s platform right now include travel plays like Carnival (NYSE:CCL) and Delta Air Lines (NYSE:DAL). Other leaders are Ford (NYSE:F) and General Electric (NYSE:GE) — two big industry names impacted by shuttered factories. But these beaten-down stocks did rally big time.

In fact, Goldman Sachs said that companies popular with “amateur” traders are significantly outperforming hedge funds right now. Yahoo Finance’s Sam Ro notes the same trend, writing this morning that “big money” may soon be following Robinhood’s lead.

With that in mind, Goldman Sachs has picked out the 15 best-performing stocks in its retail investor basket. If you want to follow the bold with a little bit of traditional backing, this list of stocks sounds like a great place to start. Here are the recommendations, via CNBC (subscription required):

  • Penn National Gaming (NASDAQ:PENN)
  • Moderna (NASDAQ:MRNA)
  • Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA)
  • MGM Resorts (NYSE:MGM)
  • Royal Caribbean (NYSE:RCL)
  • Marathon Oil (NYSE:MRO)
  • Snap (NYSE:SNAP)
  • Norwegian Cruise Line (NYSE:NCLH)
  • Nvidia (NASDAQ:NVDA)
  • Spirit Airlines (NYSE:SAVE)
  • JetBlue (NASDAQ:JBLU)
  • Boeing (NYSE:BA)
  • Ford (NYSE:F)

7 Regional Bank Stocks to Buy Now for PPP Benefits

[Monday, June 15, 11:31 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

It’s no secret that the reputation of financial institutions has weighed on bank stocks in 2020. Some investors simply can’t get over the role big banks played during the 2007-08 financial crisis — although regulations have greatly changed the banking landscape since the Great Recession.

InvestorPlace analyst Louis Navellier sees where those investors are coming from. As a former banking analyst, he wrote today that he’s too familiar with the “creative accounting” that many banks employ. That’s why he’s looking for smaller bank stocks to buy now.

And there’s another reason to be bullish on small, regional banks. According to Barron’s Matthew Klein, it was this group of smaller banks that took the lead with the Paycheck Protection Program. This may not initially make a lot of sense, but Klein elaborates. For instance, JPMorgan Chase (NYSE:JPM) told small businesses that it would only handle PPP loans for existing customers. Peers Citigroup (NYSE:C) and Bank of America (NYSE:BAC) had similar stances.

That’s where the smaller banks came in. Many smaller banks began the loan process with new small businesses, perhaps as American Banker’s Jim Dobbs put it, in an effort to gain market share. Navellier likes where these regional banks are headed, especially as many businesses approach phase two of the PPP process. He’s looking at banks around the United States, and especially regional chains that have a lot of growth potential.

Here’s what he’s recommending now:

  • Merchants Bancorp (NASDAQ:MBIN)
  • Glacier Bancorp (NASDAQ:GBCI)
  • Landmark Bancorp (NASDAQ:LARK)
  • Eagle Bancorp Montana (NASDAQ:EBMT)
  • German American Bancorp (NASDAQ:GABC)
  • Stock Yards Bancorp (NASDAQ:SYBT)
  • United Bancorp (NASDAQ:UBCP)

Stocks Open Lower Monday as New Covid-19 Cases Climb

[Monday, June 15, 9:31 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

The reopening rally has finally met its match. On Monday, the major indices are sinking into the red — just a few days after investors pushed stocks higher to enjoy the weekend. This move lower comes as novel coronavirus cases surge around the world.

A new outbreak in Beijing has prompted China to revisit strict lockdowns and mass testing measures. Around the United States, officials are considering similar decisions. Florida reported 2,000 new cases in one day — for the second day in a row. This rise in new cases comes just a few weeks after most states embarked on three-phase reopening plans. Now, it looks like Memorial Day weekend festivities and lax social distancing have a price.

Investors will have to determine exactly what that price is. Travel stocks are some of the biggest losers in early morning trading, as vacations once again seem far away. Keep a close eye on Covid-19 figures to get a sense for market sentiment.

For now, the S&P 500Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite are all in the red.

  • The S&P opened lower by 2.15%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average opened lower by 2.45%
  • The Nasdaq Composite opened lower by 1.49%

Stocks Close Higher Friday to Start the Weekend

[Friday, June 12, 4:01 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

If you’re anything like me, you’re prepping for a weekend filled with time safely spent indoors, social distancing and staying away from crowds. But regardless, a weekend is a weekend. It looks like that logic is helping the major indices stay in the green Friday, after a rout that took the Dow Jones Industrial Average lower by 1,800 points.

Granted, Friday’s into-the-weekend rally doesn’t mean that everything is better. Officials in Houston, Texas — one of the areas seeing a resurgence of novel coronavirus cases after reopening — are considering a return of stay-at-home orders. What would that mean for all of the businesses just beginning to reopen their doors after months of lost revenue? Are other cities around the U.S. about to face similar decisions? Plus, Axios’ Dion Rabouin showed investors today just how flawed May’s non-farm payrolls report really was.

Clearly, there’s just a lot more going on than the daily ups and downs of the stock market can account for. But for now, it’s the weekend, and sunshine is returning to Wall Street. The S&P 500 and the Nasdaq Composite are joining the Dow in the green to end the week.

  • The S&P 500 closed higher by 1.3%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed higher by 1.9%
  • The Nasdaq Composite closed higher by 1.01%

Don’t Miss Out on the Coming Gold Bull Run

[Friday, June 12, 3:45 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

The words of Barron’s Steven Sears come to mind now. Early in June, he wrote “As America burns, gold shines.” At the time, his words were quite literal. Protesters flooded U.S. streets after the Minneapolis killing of George Floyd, and fires broke out across the country. Now, investors are also reckoning with a less literal fire — Thursday’s stock market rout that saw the Dow Jones Industrial Average lose 1,800 points.

If there’s one thing you should take away from the stock market these last few weeks it’s this. Buy gold now.

Some say it’s the perfect crisis investment. Others call it a safe haven, turning to it in times of political uncertainty. It rose after the U.S. military killed Iran’s Qasem Soleimani. It rose again at the peak of the novel coronavirus pandemic. And gold prices are up 3% this week amid renewed pandemic panic.

That’s why InvestorPlace analysts Eric Fry and Neil George are bullish on gold right now. As George wrote yesterday, lower interest rates are the biggest driver of gold prices. And boy, interest rates are low right now. In fact, it was the Federal Reserve’s announcement that it would maintain near-zero rates through 2022 that largely sparked yesterday’s selloff. But low interest rates should keep gold prices headed higher for the foreseeable future.

Fry is also urging investors to buy gold now, writing that they simply have to purchase the hot commodity. Why? Gold is gaining amid the pandemic, but it will gain even more after. That’s because fears of post-pandemic inflation should drive prices higher. Gold mining stocks are Fry’s top recommendation to profit from gold’s soon-to-be massive gains.

Neil George has one specific recommendation — what he sees as the best way to profit from gold now. He likes Franco-Nevada (NYSE:FNV). However you choose to play the coming bull run in gold, just make sure you get in now before it’s too late.

Farfetch Stock Is a Buy as Consumers Turn to Luxury Retail

[Friday, June 12, 3:04 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

We’ve previously reported about The RealReal (NASDAQ:REAL) and ThredUp, two ways to play luxury retail amid the novel coronavirus. ThredUp — which Walmart (NYSE:WMT) just partnered with — and The RealReal focus on the second-hand niche. But is there any way to profit during the pandemic from full-price luxury goods?

According to InvestorPlace Markets Analyst Luke Lango, there is. That’s why he’s bullish on Farfetch (NYSE:FTCH), an e-commerce retailer that focuses on full-price luxury fashion and accessories. In fact, he thinks the stock could soon hit $120 from its current per-share price of $15. That’s because in many ways, Lango sees the site as the Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) of the luxury space. From Lango:

“Over the next decade, a few things will happen. The global luxury fashion market will continue to grow. Sales in that market will increasingly pivot online. And Farfetch will likely become the go-to centralized digital marketplace for luxury fashion.”

On the site, you can browse through designers like Prada, Burberry, Off-White and Versace. In addition to clothing, you can nab luxury shoes, handbags and other accessories. During a pandemic credited with slamming the economy into a recession, it’s an odd argument to bet on anything luxury. But as we’ve reported previously in this blog, designer scarves and statement earrings were in high demand as white-collar workers shifted to the world of videoconferencing.

Plus, the luxury world is making a comeback. CNN’s Michelle Toh wrote that consumer spending data from China shows that shoppers are finally back to buying luxury items. She uses the phrase “revenge spending” — encapsulating the pent-up demand driving purchases. Forbes contributor Pamela Danziger sees luxury retailers benefiting from the “wellness” trend likely to emerge as the world reopens. The last few months have taken a mental and physical toll on many workers, so retailers that can cater to rest and relaxation will stand to win.

But what about the very real impacts of the coronavirus on consumer spending? A McKinsey report is quick to highlight the problems. A lot of luxury shopping is done by consumers on international trips. Factories — many of which are in Italy — were shut down for long periods. But those brands that pivoted to digital engagement and responded with innovation are likely to come out on top.

And when those brands do, consumers will come to Farfetch for their purchases. Like Lango wrote, it will become the go-to platform for luxury e-commerce. Even if this shift doesn’t happen overnight, getting in near $15 and eventually seeing shares hit $120 isn’t a bad proposition.

9 Cryptocurrencies to Watch for the Rest of 2020

[Friday, June 12, 2:15 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

This has been quite the tumultuous year. We entered 2020 on a high, driven on by big excitement over accelerating trends in electric vehicles, next-generation healthcare and 5G. Then the U.S. renewed tensions with Iran, a pandemic destroyed the economy and America entered a period of ongoing civil unrest. There’s simply a lot of news driving the market right now.

Recent price action should confirm that it’s a tumultuous time. Stocks were on a massive rally — one that seemed too resilient to stop. But this week brought renewed panic about the novel coronavirus, and investors wanted out. That’s why InvestorPlace’s Josh Enomoto, like many other market legends, are turning to cryptocurrencies right now.

For one, these cryptocurrencies allow investors to look toward the future, embracing a unique megatrend. But because of their separation from fiat currencies, they also offer a way to hedge your portfolio from government-driven ups and downs. Some would even go so far as to say that cryptos are a safe-haven investment like gold.

Enomoto is bullish on cryptocurrencies for many reasons, and he is encouraging others to do some research. Here are nine cryptocurrencies he’s recommending now:

  • Bitcoin (CCC:BTC)
  • Ether (CCC:ETH)
  • Litecoin (CCC:LTC)
  • Bitcoin Cash (CCC:BCH)
  • Lumens (CCC:XLM)
  • 0x (CCC:ZRW)
  • Dai (CCC:DAI)

4 Stocks to Buy to Embrace the Great Outdoors

[Friday, June 12, 12:40 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Time spent in quarantine has given many Americans new habits. Some are baking several loaves of bread a week. Others are learning to sew — and then donating masks to local organizations. And plenty of others are taking up outdoor activities. Running. Biking. Long family walks. Even those who lived mostly sedentary lives prior to the novel coronavirus are feeling the itch to get out and explore.

During peak moments of lockdown, this benefited at-home fitness companies like Peloton (NASDAQ:PTON). Now, states are reopening, and consumers are ready to safely experience nature. Sure, there are those Americans eager to be the first in line at a reopened casino or movie theater. But for most adults, it seems like the urge is just to simply explore, while still social distancing.

Bloomberg’s Olivia Carville reported this week that Airbnb is seeing a surge in vacation-rental demand. Instead of weekend getaways, city workers are finding work-from-home retreats in nature-filled locations. In fact, even after months of suffering while consumers stayed at home, Axios’ Dan Primack said a 2020 IPO is back on the table for the short-term rental company.

Clearly this means demand is present and real. For investors, it’s time to buy a subset of travel and entertainment stocks geared toward the outdoor trend. Where should you start?

Trust me, I rolled my eyes when I read that Americans were panic-buying Peloton bikes. I also rolled my eyes at headlines that RV companies were seeing record demand. But it’s true, and points to a growing outdoors-focused mindset. Maybe we’re learning that binge-watching TV isn’t all that rewarding?

As the team at Morning Brew recently reported, Thor Industries (NYSE:THO) — the maker of Airstream and other RV brands — recently reported stellar earnings, and that’s a key sign of what’s to come in terms of consumer trends. One Bloomberg columnist even said RVs are the new commercial real estate. Next, add Vista Outdoors (NYSE:VSTO) and Dick’s Sporting Goods (NYSE:DKS) to your buy list. That way, you can benefit from all the consumers stocking up on bikes, outdoor wear, camping gear and even grills.

Lastly, consider recent IPO Azek (NYSE:AZEK) for those consumers who want to experience the outdoors without roughing it in an RV or tent. The company supplies the materials for luxury decks and patios, and shares keep heading higher.

Buy Chegg Stock for a Future of Learning From Home

[Friday, June 12, 12:00 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

A common theme in community forums is that an unexpected shift to remote education has put a strain on many American families. Some struggle because parents are balancing their own work — remote or not — with homeschooling. Other are struggling as children miss out on social time, one-on-one teacher engagement and structured learning. Now, America is reopening, but the future of education is hazy.

Earlier this week, Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam announced a phased approach to reopening schools. Students who need in-person education the most could start back as early as this summer. And universities around the country are determined to return to campus.

But there are certainly families uneasy about the return to in-person learning. Some are at high risk for the novel coronavirus. Others have become fond of extra time together. Regardless of the reasoning, companies that make remote education easier are sure to benefit. Startups like QuizletTop HatEdsights and Primer are raking in funding after this spring. Helping students succeed and helping parents stay sane seems to be the common goal.

Investors in the public markets can turn to Chegg (NYSE:CHGG), an industry leader in the learn-from-home space. It helps with homework answers, textbook rentals and essay writingInvestorPlace Markets Analyst Luke Lango wrote Wednesday that it’s one of the best stocks to buy and hold for the next 10 years. He sees it as being early on in its successful journey, especially as more consumers will likely embrace virtual education. Plus, its diverse education offerings give it a leg up as new startups enter the space.

However, it’s clear Chegg is taking the competition seriously. ZDNet’s Stephanie Condon just reported it acquired Mathaway for $100 million, giving it access to users in 100 countries. Mathaway is a popular problem-solving application used for virtual learning, and it’s one of the highest-rated education apps. According to Condon, one of the biggest wins for Chegg is the fact Mathaway is used in 13 languages across 100 countries. This should help Chegg up its international exposure.

As families across the U.S. and around the globe continue to learn from home, look to companies like Chegg for profits. It turns out everyone needs a little help with math sometimes.

Stocks Reverse Losses to Open Higher Friday

[Friday, June 12, 9:31 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

It’s time to party like it’s the weekend! Or at least, that seems to be the mantra many investors are following Friday morning. The sun is shining again on Wall Street and the major indices are opening higher after a market rout yesterday.

Unfortunately, it’s hard to tell what changed. The Federal Reserve’s predictions remain intact, and novel coronavirus cases haven’t evaporated. Perhaps it really is just the power of the weekend ahead. It’s also possible that bulls have taken over again, driving stocks higher on a reopening rally.

Either way, the S&P 500Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite are all opening in the green Friday.

  • The S&P 500 opened higher by 2.2%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average opened higher by 2.51%
  • The Nasdaq Composite opened higher by 1.73%

Dow Drops 1,800 Points on Return of Recession Fears

[Thursday, June 11, 4:01 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Writing that headline hurt. After all things sunshine and rainbows in the past few weeks, the major indices just couldn’t hold it together today. Yesterday’s comments from the Federal Reserve — including plans to maintain near-zero rates through 2022 — have renewed a sense of panic in the stock market.

Knowing that the Fed has such a gloomy outlook for the economy is certainly causing investors to second-guess the reopening rally. At the same time, another 1.5 million Americans filed for initial unemployment benefits today. That brings the total above 44 million, and paints an ugly picture of just what the novel coronavirus has done to the American economy.

There’s one more catalyst behind the pain, at least according to a senior scholar at the Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security. Many states “rushed” to reopen, in hopes of revitalizing small businesses and getting people back to work. But now, some of those states are reporting record rises in cases. Just yesterday, Texas reported more than 2,500 new cases — the highest since the start of the pandemic.

For now at least, daydreams of summer vacations and a pandemic-free America have faded. The S&P 500Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite closed Thursday deep in the red.

  • The S&P 500 closed lower Thursday by 5.89%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed lower Thursday by 6.9%
  • The Nasdaq Composite closed lower Thursday by 5.27%

3 Stocks to Buy as the Market Sinks

[Thursday, June 11, 3:03 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

There’s not much to cheer about today as the stock market tumbles, but one piece of time-tested advice rings true — if there’s a will, there’s a way.

That motto is inspiring InvestorPlace’s Tyler Craig to offer some bullish advice right now. Sure, investors are selling stocks like crazy and the S&P 500 is down more than 5% in intraday trading. But there are stocks you can buy now to actually profit from the selloff.

He starts by looking at companies that have already found a lot of success amid the novel coronavirus. But unlike other high-flying names, he’s convinced his three recommendations still have room to run. That piece is key, especially as we wait to see where the U.S. will fall between a reopening rally and a scary second wave of the virus.

Here’s what he’s recommending now:

  • Peloton (NASDAQ:PTON)
  • Twilio (NYSE:TWLO)
  • Crowdstrike (NASDAQ:CRWD)

Bank of America: 15 Stocks to Buy to Sleep Better at Night

[Thursday, June 11, 2:46 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Will there be a second wave of the novel coronavirus? And will researchers ever come up an effective treatment or cure? If those questions, along with thoughts of ongoing civil unrest, rising international tensions and a recession are keeping you up at night, it’s time to evaluate your portfolio.

Or at least, that’s Bank of America’s recommendation. Analysts at the firm acknowledge that investors are likely sleepless over recent events. Just today, the stock market is down 5% in intraday trading after a rally so resilient it appeared nothing could shake it.

But if you invest in the right stocks, there’s a lot less reason for worry. You can go to sleep at night knowing that whichever direction the major indices take in the morning, your portfolio will still look solid. These are companies that will continue to benefit from the reopening rally, but they’ll also be there for you if a second wave of the virus does emerge.

Here are 15 stocks Bank of America is recommending now (subscription required):

  • Home Depot (NYSE:HD)
  • Lowe’s (NYSE:LOW)
  • Costco (NASDAQ:COST)
  • Kellogg (NYSE:K)
  • Hormel Foods (NYSE:HRL)
  • General Mills (NYSE:GIS)
  • Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ)
  • Ross Stores (NASDAQ:ROST)
  • Campbell Soup (NYSE:CPB)
  • Alaska Air Group (NYSE:ALK)
  • Southwest Airlines (NYSE:LUV)
  • Booking Holdings (NASDAQ:BKNG)
  • Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL)
  • Nike (NYSE:NKE)
  • Wells Fargo (NYSE:WFC)

Get Creative, Take a Selfie and Buy Adobe Stock

[June 11, 2:17 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Adobe (NASDAQ:ADBE) has been a clear winner in 2020. InvestorPlace Markets Analyst Luke Lango has highlighted its outperformance — it’s up 20% so far this year — and the appeal of its work-from-home software. Ahead of its second-quarter earnings this afternoon, InvestorPlace’s Tezcan Gecgil reiterated that it’s a solid buy, although investors should expect some choppiness after earnings.

Where’s the appeal? According to Lango, it’s in Adobe’s Document Clouds solutions and its creative offerings. If you hadn’t noticed, there’s no shortage of influencer content being made despite the novel coronavirus. When the company reports earnings today, analysts expect $2.33 per share on revenue of $3.2 billion. And Adobe bulls should find confidence in its potential for the rest of 2020 and beyond.

Today Axios’ Ina Fried reported on an exciting new innovation from Adobe. The company launched its Photoshop Camera app for mobile, designed to spark on-the-go creativity. Users can access some higher-quality photo editing tools, and also add fun features like filters. As Mashable’s Alex Perry wrote this morning, the move is also perfect for branding. An initial preview of the app in November featured Billie Eilish camera lenses.

It’s certainly not a true Photoshop equivalent, but it could go a long way in promoting Adobe’s products to younger smartphone users eager to create trendy content. Plus, as Fried reported in November, Adobe has a bunch more mobile-friendly products in the works. It previously announced Photoshop and Illustrator versions for Apple’s (NASDAQ:AAPL) iPad and an expansion of its Fresco painting app for Microsoft’s (NASDAQ:MSFT) Windows.

Now, more than ever, the world of digital creativity matters. Influencers are getting younger, and time spent in quarantine fueled many creative projects. Anything industry leader Adobe can do to stay relevant and attract younger users matters. Keep a close eye on today’s earnings, and on the future of Adobe’s mobile releases.

Buy Regeneron Stock for Its Covid-19 Cocktail Drug

[June 11, 12:38 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

If you’re already sick with the novel coronavirus, having a drug that will make you feel better is certainly nice. But what if there’s a drug you could take that would actually prevent you from ever getting sick? That’s exactly what Regeneron Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:REGN) is working on now.

Today the company announced it had begun human trials of its REGN-COV2 antibody cocktail at multiple sites across the U.S. Regeneron is managing four different study populations — examining the uses of this drug for both treatment and prevention. These groups include those who are hospitalized, those who are sick but not hospitalized, those who are healthy but at high risk, and those who are healthy but have come in contact with a sick individual.

At this point in the pandemic, it seems too good to be true that such a drug could be a few months away. But according to CNN’s Jen Christensen, if all goes well, REGN-COV2 could receive emergency-use authorization from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration by the fall. Plus, as Christensen points out, Regeneron’s team of scientists has a lot of experience in this field. They have developed effective antibody cocktails for the Ebola virus and for MERS.

Right now, there are several companies working on vaccines and a variety of drugs for the novel coronavirus. Some work to treat specific side effects, while Gilead’s (NASDAQ:GILD) remdesivir is designed to help those who have already become sick. Remdesivir also happens to be the only drug to receive emergency-use authorization thus far.

According to The Wall Street Journal’s Jonathan Rockoff, there’s a key difference between remdesivir and REGN-COV2. Remdesivir, and other antiviral drugs, is designed to attack the virus once it enters a cell. REGN-COV2 and other antibody drug cocktails target viruses before they have entered cells. More information on the study design, as well as the drug’s antibodies, should be available soon.

InvestorPlace’s Dana Blankenhorn thinks REGN stock is a great long-term buy. He likes its proposed drug for the coronavirus, but he’s also a fan of the technology behind Regeneron’s drug development. In late May, he told investors that as long as they had a longer time frame, there’s no reason to worry about today’s price. Get in, hold on to shares and make a profit.

Moderna Stock Climbs on Late-Stage Trial Plans

[Thursday, June 11, 12:14 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Moderna (NASDAQ:MRNA) is seriously looking to make a name for itself amid the novel coronavirus pandemic, and so far, it’s working. Just a few weeks ago, an update on its early trials sent the market soaring — especially as investors see a vaccine as the key to returning to “normal” once and for all. And MRNA stock is up again today on news it’s ready to launch the final stage of trials in July.

The Massachusetts-based biotech has long been leading the race. According to a company press release, Moderna will test a 100-microgram dose of its vaccine in 30,000 trial participants. This study is massive, its placebo-controlled and it’s further evidence that Moderna is getting closer to a successful coronavirus vaccine. According to BioPharma Dive’s Ben Fidler, this morning’s announcement also makes it the first company to thoroughly outline Phase 3 trial plans.

Underlying this victory is President Donald Trump’s Operation Warp Speed. The New York Times recently reported that Moderna was among the mission’s final candidates, likely thanks to its progress thus far and its scaling abilities. Two of its peers, Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ) and AstraZeneca (NYSE:AZN), also plan to launch “massive” trials in July.

But Moderna is still the first to release an official plan.

As part of Operation Warp Speed, manufacturing, commercializing and delivering the vaccine is the next part of the problem. Trump is promising companies federal funding and military support. On its own, Reuters’ Julie Steenhuysen reports that Moderna is able to produce 500 million doses of the vaccine this year, and hopefully 1 billion doses annually beginning in 2021. January 2021 also marks the official “deployment” date for Operation Warp Speed.

Keep a close eye on Moderna. It’s already flown quite high, but it’s hard to predict just what a successful coronavirus vaccine could mean for Moderna’s stock price. Right now, InvestorPlace analyst Louis Navellier acknowledges that it’s a risky stock, but he says it’s worth a buy anyways. It looks like you just can’t bet against a potentially pandemic-ending vaccine.

Stocks Slump Thursday on Rash of Bad News

[Thursday, June 11, 9:31 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

It’s a gloomy day in the stock market — although Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA) CEO Elon Musk is finding some room for humor. Investors are still processing yesterday’s announcement from the Federal Reserve, and like with past announcements, the unprecedented move to support the market has everyone a little spooked.

Making matters worse is the weekly look at initial unemployment benefit claims. This week, investors learned that 1.5 million more Americans had filed for these initial benefits. Sure, that number is lower than the weekly figures from March. But as Axios’ Courtenay Brown highlights, 1.5 million is still a record number. In fact, this number is still more than double the pre-pandemic record set in 1982.

It’s clear the bulls have taken a step back to process all the news. The S&P 500Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite all opened sharply in the red.

  • The S&P 500 opened lower by 2.57%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average opened lower by 3.02%
  • The Nasdaq Composite opened lower by 2.14%

Stocks Struggle Wednesday on Federal Reserve Comments

[Wednesday, June 10, 4:01 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Oh, the Federal Reserve. Each time it swoops in to save the day, investors panic. To be fair, its response to the novel coronavirus has been simply unprecedented. And today, during the meeting of its Federal Open Market Committee, the group decided to maintain near-zero rates until 2022.

On one hand, investors could find comfort in knowing the Federal Reserve has their back, and that the market support the group has provided thus far won’t disappear anytime soon. But on the other hand, it’s an indication that the Fed anticipates the recovery being far from instantaneous.

Stocks weren’t sure which way to go after the announcement. At the closing bell Wednesday, the major indices were split. The S&P 500 and the Dow Jones Industrial Average were in the red, while the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite stayed steady in the green.

  • The S&P 500 closed lower by 0.53%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed lower by 1.04%
  • The Nasdaq Composite closed lower by 0.67%

4 Entertainment Stocks to Buy for a Reopening Rally

[Wednesday, June 10, 2:09 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

The smell of slightly burnt popcorn. Bright lights, loud music. The sound of a roller coaster rushing by your head. Do you remember any of those sensations? Well, if you’ve been mourning the delightful experiences found in crowds of strangers, you’re in luck.

That’s right, America is reopening and investors are ready. Over the past few weeks, many investors piled into other hard-hit sectors like travel and leisure. With planes and cruises, the reopening thesis is a little easier. Consumers eventually are going to need to travel again, and there’s already data flowing in about cruise interest. But what about movie theaters and concerts?

A big concern with this live entertainment space is just what exactly reopening will bring. Many states plan on opening these large venues last, as part of three-phase plans. And when the venues do reopen, will consumers come? Or will safety concerns dominate for the rest of 2020 and beyond?

Well, InvestorPlace’s David Moadel is pretty confident that the pent-up demand catalyst we’ve seen in other sectors will give entertainment stocks a boost. That’s because Americans love freedom, even if seeing a concert means risking exposure to the novel coronavirus. If anything, long-term investors can also find some comfort in knowing that eventually, things will be safe. Buying in now at discounted prices could bring you a pretty profit.

Here’s what Moadel is recommending now:

  • AMC Entertainment (NYSE:AMC)
  • Las Vegas Sands (NYSE:LVS)
  • Live Nation Entertainment (NYSE:LYV)
  • Walt Disney (NYSE:DIS)

Corning and UPS Stock Offer Unique Vaccine Plays

[Wednesday, June 10, 1:20 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

It’s been incredibly easy to be a bull on vaccine stocks. Think about all the companies racing to develop a treatment for the novel coronavirus. Scientists, researchers, biotech startup executives. But somewhere in this buying frenzy, investors have ignored two potentially profitable opportunities.

Right now, President Donald Trump’s Operation Warp Speed has taken some of the best candidates and thrust them into the spotlight. The mission brings federal funding, as well as increased support for manufacturing and deploying. Heck, the U.S. military might even get involved. But ramping up manufacturing at unprecedented levels brings some unique concerns.

For instance, think about the vials and other packaging goods. Where do those come from? In this case, it looks like Corning (NYSE:GLW), the iconic glassmaker, is involved. After concerns over glass vial shortages started circling, the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA) gave Corning $204 million for vaccine vial production.

Sure, $204 million isn’t enough to move mountains, but the interest in glass is key. Think about what happens if Operation Warp Speed is successful and a vaccine is ready by January 2021. What happens if — despite broad consumer fears — it becomes mandatory in America? Corning could be set for a major new stream of revenue.

Here’s another problem to chew on. How do the vaccines get from laboratories to trial sites, and then from trial sites to hospitals or patients’ homes? Well, the United Parcel Service (NYSE:UPS) has a healthcare division that is working to address just that. According to Wes Wheeler, the president of the healthcare subsidiary, UPS is pivoting to create the facilities and transport vehicles necessary to support Operation Warp Speed. Supply Chain Dive’s Matt Leonard wrote that this could mean shipping with dry ice for specific sub-frozen conditions. Plus, as Leonard wrote, the healthcare unit has also helped ship personal protective equipment to U.S. customers from China.

Corning and UPS are surely not the only unique plays in the vaccine space, but these stocks serve as a reminder to think outside the box. Operation Warp Speed itself is unprecedented in nature — although Trump has compared it to the Manhattan Project — and the pandemic is forcing all sorts of innovation.

This Week’s IPO Stocks Are Heating Up the Bull Case

[Wednesday, June 10, 12:30 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Last week’s initial public offerings truly gave bullish investors something to celebrate. After a few months of silence in the IPO world, eight deals and two special purpose acquisition companies hit the market. As we previously reported in this blog, this return to public debuts marks a major shift in the stock market’s recovery.

Warner Music Group (NASDAQ:WMG) debuted at $25, and has since climbed to just over $31. It grabbed attention as the largest IPO yet in 2020, and as a company that wasn’t afraid to enter the public arena amid the novel coronavirus pandemic.

But this week, things are even hotter in terms of IPO stocks, which is an even better sign for investors. There are eight more deals, cumulatively set to raise $2 billion. And these deals have already racked up a lot of headlines. This week saw the biggest first-day return for a tech IPO since 2018. It’s also been the biggest week for preclinical biotech offerings — ever.

Two names in particular stand out, and both have pandemic-driven catalysts. Vroom (NASDAQ:VRM) priced its IPO at $22, and shares have already doubled. Like Carvana (NYSE:CVNA), the beauty with this company is that it allows consumers to order, finance and receive a new car all without leaving their home. Not only does this play into the accelerating social distancing trend, it’s clear that Vroom also understands e-commerce is the future for most shopping.

One more IPO to watch is Azek, which will trade under ticker AZEK. This company is a manufacturer of outdoor living products, specifically for the luxury market. It sounds very niche, but all things “nature” are gaining traction as consumers emerge from weeks in quarantine.

Regardless of the success of specific new offerings, it’s clear things are changing in the stock market. Expect the pace of initial public offerings to pick up speed through 2020, and don’t count out debuts from big names like Airbnb just yet. Who knows what the reopening rally will bring.

5 Stocks to Buy for Post-Pandemic Remote Work

[Wednesday, June 10, 10:39 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Many Americans have come to an interesting point in the work-from-home journey. It’s not so bad to wake up, grab a mug of coffee and then head to the couch. For some white-collar workers, these last few months have created opportunities to work from the wilderness, or perhaps a parent’s house. But for many, one of the biggest drawbacks is the time lost socializing with friends and coworkers.

Now, as the country reopens, many investors are likely starting to bet against the work-from-home trend. Why? Surely, they argue, if states are reopening then workers will return to the office voluntarily. But big companies like Twitter (NYSE:TWTR) have already moved to a “WFH forever” model.

That’s where InvestorPlace’s Thomas Niel comes in. He understands that there’s a fine line between choosing to work from home and having to work from home. He also understands that Americans are likely more bummed out about replacing in-person happy hours and birthday parties for their video-call alternatives.

According to Niel, that means pure work-from-home plays — companies that don’t dive too far into the social realm — are the best stocks to buy in this trend moving forward. That way, as businesses prep to keep some employees home forever, these names will benefit while social-focused tech may lag.

Here’s what he’s recommending now:

  • Atlassian Corporation (NASDAQ:TEAM)
  • DocuSign (NASDAQ:DOCU)
  • Dropbox (NASDAQ:DBX)
  • Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT)
  • Slack (NYSE:WORK)

Stocks Reverse Losses to Open Higher Wednesday

[Wednesday, June 10, 9:31 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

When will the recession end? What will the Federal Reserve decide today? And will a second wave of the novel coronavirus destroy this beautiful reopening rally? Unfortunately, investors don’t have answers to any of those important questions.

Yesterday, fears of a longer-lasting recession seemed to pull stocks down even as initial public offerings drew excitement in the market. It’s clear bulls and bears are fighting it out, and a lot is at stake. This morning it appears the bulls are back in charge. The S&P 500Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite all opened in the green.

  • The S&P 500 opened higher by 0.35%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average opened higher by 0.15%
  • The Nasdaq Composite opened higher by 0.92%

Nasdaq Composite Gains Tuesday Despite Market Stumble

[Tuesday, June 9, 4:01 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Tuesday was an interesting day in the stock market to say the least. It seems that a report declaring the U.S. has been in a recession since February is still weighing down equities. But at the same time, IPO stocks are rallying and Big Tech names like Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) and Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) are still pushing higher.

It seems like in many ways, investors are split. Is it time to fully embrace the reopening rally and chase shiny new public offerings to the moon? Or, are we one press release away from a second wave of the novel coronavirus?

For today, bulls are walking a fine line. Big Tech took the Nasdaq Composite higher, but the S&P 500 and Dow Jones Industrial Average closed Tuesday in the red.

  • The S&P 500 closed lower by 0.78%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed lower by 1.09%
  • The Nasdaq Composite closed higher by 0.29%

Beyond Meat Stock Is a Buy on Massive China Potential

[Tuesday, June 9, 3:16 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Let’s quickly recap how the novel coronavirus is affecting the global meat supply. Consumers started buying more groceries and making more food at home than ever before. But this demand was complicated by shortages of supply. Why? Plants around the U.S. closed as workers fell sick at record pace. This in turn lowered the nation’s meat supply, and prices went up.

Beyond Meat (NASDAQ:BYND) and its plant-based peers then became unexpected winners amid the coronavirus. Americans who had perhaps never considered fake meat stocked up on its products on fears real chicken, beef and pork would disappear.

As a result of the stockpiling — and its sudden relevancy — BYND stock is up more than 100% in 2020.

But the catalyst behind Beyond Meat doesn’t stop there. The company is rapidly expanding as the Chinese market similarly turns to plant-based meat. It has already announced partnerships with Yum China (NYSE:YUMC) and certain Chinese Starbucks (NASDAQ:SBUX) locations. Investors bid shares up on that news because of the potential for Chinese consumers to fall in love with fake meat.

That argument looks even more convincing now. According to Barron’s Al Root, Beyond Meat recently signed a distribution agreement with Sinodis, a subsidiary of Savencia. Essentially, Sinodis will distribute Beyond Beef and the Beyond Burger products to Chinese wholesalers, hotels and restaurant operators. This partnership sounds like major exposure for Beyond Meat.

There’s one more catalyst to watch. The African swine fever has been decimating China’s pig population, and pork, which is the country’s most popular meat, has been in short supply. Although China has pivoted to importing more pork, perhaps the virus will push more consumers to plant-based meat.

All in all, there’s a lot to like. InvestorPlace Markets Analyst Luke Lango still thinks BYND stock is one of the best names to buy in 2020. Although he says shares could stumble as more restaurants reopen, catalysts like its growth in China should quickly restore its long-term winning trajectory.

There’s Nothing Sour About the Upcoming Lemonade IPO

[Tuesday, June 9, 2:24 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Hello and welcome to the digital world. You can buy clothes online, or your groceries or even that new sofa you’ve been admiring on social media. Not feeling well? Chat with your doctor — from almost any specialty — while lounging in bed. Now you can even nab an insurance policy through an aesthetically pleasing mobile app.

Lemonade, a mobile-first insurance provider, focuses on the home and renters’ insurance space. Download the app, input your info and get your policy. The startup claims the world of “insurtech” — or insurance tech — as its home. And according to Business Insider’s Graham Rapier, a big part of the appeal is its reliance on artificial intelligence and Big Data to better analyze risk.

Oh, and Lemonade just filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for its initial public offering. According to Axios’ Dan Primack its most recent round of funding gave it a valuation of $2.1 billion. Like other recent IPOs, it’s not yet profitable — reporting a loss of $108 million last year.

So what’s the big deal? Essentially, Lemonade combines its high-tech offering with consumer-focused convenience. It charges a flat subscription fee, says it pays out claims super fast and donates any money leftover to charity organizations. Can it get any more millennial?

Beyond the aesthetics, there’s something big here for investors to pay attention to. Not only is Lemonade backed by SoftBank (OTCMKTS:SFTBY), but it’s playing into a major trend that the novel coronavirus is only accelerating. The world of insurance is quickly moving online, as InvestorPlace Markets Analyst Luke Lango revealed with his recommendation of EverQuote (NASDAQ:EVER). Before the pandemic, consumers were just starting to embrace this trend, especially younger demographics. As the pandemic made all sorts of errands and appointments difficult — if not impossible — going online to start a new policy became much more attractive.

As with any red-hot IPO, it’s important to be cautious and dig through the facts. But Lemonade is launching into an accelerating trend. Young millennials are likely considering their first home purchases, and younger consumers are packing up and searching for their first apartments. Getting a reputable policy right through an app just can’t be beat.

7 Pharmaceutical Stocks to Buy Outside the Vaccine Race

[Tuesday, June 9, 1:49 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

One of the biggest narratives in the pharmaceutical and biotech space has centered on a long list of companies racing to fight the novel coronavirus. President Donald Trump’s Operation Warp Speed has thrust a short list of vaccine makers front and center. Right now, a lot of investor attention and consumer hope rests on a successful vaccine.

But for many reasons, it’s likely time to expand your horizons in the pharmaceutical world beyond vaccine stocks. America is reopening, and other headlines are more pressing. Plus, there are several other important and rare diseases in need of cures. Sure, not too long ago it was risky to invest in anything outside of the coronavirus race. Lockdowns delayed trials and kept researchers out of labs. But that’s all changing as many states in the U.S. move into phase-two protocols.

InvestorPlace analyst Louis Navellier addressed this issue today. He wrote that while there’s still lots of “glow” surrounding vaccine makers, less risk-tolerant investors should be protecting themselves with diversified pharma plays.

For that reason, he has seven recommendations that span the world. He looks at generic drugs, cancer-fighting biotechs and even a healthcare tech supplier. One thing is certain: There’s no shortage of growth potential on his list.

Here are seven pharmaceutical stocks on his buy list now:

  • Grifols (NASDAQ:GRFS)
  • Repligen (NASDAQ:RGEN)
  • Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories (NYSE:RDY)
  • Takeda Pharmaceutical (NYSE:TAK)
  • Zoetis (NYSE:ZTS)
  • Merck (NYSE:MRK)
  • Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ)

Nikola Stock Is a Buy on Surging EV Potential

[Tuesday, June 9, 1:35 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

There’s no doubt that Nikola (NASDAQ:NKLA) has been on fire since its initial public offering. Shares are up almost 10% in intraday trading, and they’re up a whopping 680% since its debut. Although electric vehicles — and the all-electric future underway — are exciting, there’s clearly something else going on here.

In short, investors are excited because Nikola seems to be the next Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA). Sure, there are hot companies like Nio (NYSE:NIO) and soon-to-debut Xpeng, but Nikola is different. For one, it comes with its very own Elon Musk in the form of founder Trevor Milton. As InvestorPlace’s David Moadel wrote yesterday, it’s exciting to think that Milton could bring the hype and celebrity status to Nikola that Musk brings to Tesla.

As has been clear in the last few years, a simple tweet from Musk can move the market and send TSLA stock skyrocketing. Yesterday, after Milton referenced a preorder date for the Badger truck, NKLA shares went up 80%.

We reported in this blog yesterday that the future appears to be learning toward electric vehicles and the infrastructure needed to support them. This means good things for existing EV players, and Nikola looks ready to become a true industry leader. Hashtags, a spotlight-ready CEO and a megatrend are all supporting NKLA stock, so keep your eyes on the prize.

The electric future sure looks bright.

Stocks Open Lower Monday on Recession Fears

[Tuesday, June 9, 9:31 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Yesterday brought such a solid start to a new week of trading. Travel stocks were rallying, recent IPO Nikola (NASDAQ:NKLA) was on a tear and hard-hit Boeing (NYSE:BA) once again showed signs of a meaningful recovery. Heck, the S&P 500 is now positive for the year to date.

But just before the closing bell, investors caught wind of a report from the National Bureau of Economic research — the group responsible for tracking business cycles in the U.S. We reported yesterday that the report, which declared that a recession began in February, was just not that surprising.

Maybe we jinxed it. Stocks are opening down Tuesday, although it’s possible the rally will return. It is rather resilient, as we’ve seen in the last few weeks. For now, though, the S&P 500, Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite are opening in the red.

  • The S&P 500 opened lower by 1.07%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average opened lower by 1.32%
  • The Nasdaq Composite opened lower by 0.55%

7 Risky Stocks to Buy Now for Coronavirus Gains

[Monday, June 8, 4:28 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

The last few months feel like a lifetime. In early March, investors found solace — and outperformance — in so-called coronavirus stocks like Clorox (NYSE:CLX) and Zoom Video (NASDAQ:ZM). Then, the market moved to support vaccine developers, test kit makers and personal protective equipment suppliers. Now we’re seeing a rally in hard-hit industries likely to benefit most from a reopening.

Boy, hasn’t it been a doozy? Unfortunately, this whiplash-inducing shift in market sentiment means that some names from early March have run out of upside potential. But for risk-tolerant investors, there are still some worthy coronavirus stocks.

According to InvestorPlace analyst Louis Navellier, some of these stocks are likely to benefit from now-permanent changes in consumer behavior. These trends include the acceleration of e-commerce and American’s embrace of doing — and buying — everything online. Other names on this list are likely to benefit from reopening-driven testing, and the unfortunate potential for a second wave of the virus.

Here are seven risky names that Navellier is recommending now:

  • Wayfair (NYSE:W)
  • Carvana (NYSE:CVNA)
  • Moderna (NASDAQ:MRNA)
  • Shopify (NYSE:SHOP)
  • Co-Diagnostics (NASDAQ:CODX)
  • Alpha Pro Tech (NYSEMKT:APT)

Stocks Close Higher Monday Despite Calls of Recession

[Monday, June 8, 4:01 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

This morning, we reported on a whole host of reasons that stocks were opening higher. New Zealand eliminated the novel coronavirus, and New York City is moving ahead with reopening. A better-than-expected jobs report on Friday has investors cheering — despite any flaws in the data.

As has been typical in the last few weeks, this optimism is incredibly powerful. Bulls drove stocks even higher in trading on Monday to close in the green. This comes despite calls of a recession — which allegedly started in February — from the National Bureau of Economic Research. Perhaps investors knew this to be true before the report, or perhaps they think it no longer matters.

Regardless, the major indices surged higher on the day. The Dow Jones Industrial Average added more than 450 points, and the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq Composite joined it in the rally.

  • The S&P 500 closed higher by 1.20%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed higher by 1.70%
  • The Nasdaq Composite closed higher by 1.13%

4 Electric Car Stocks to Buy for Post-Pandemic Power

[Monday, June 8, 3:35 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Let’s quickly reflect on all that’s happening in the world of electric vehicles, and the role the novel coronavirus has played in 2020. Before the pandemic, many market experts saw this year as the year for EVs. But when a health crisis mixed with an oil crisis, the argument for alternate energy sources faded with crude oil at rock-bottom prices.

Now, things are turning around. As we reported earlier today, Democrats in the House of Representatives are pushing for infrastructure spending that would specifically target electrifying America. China’s Xpeng — considered to be a rival to Nio (NYSE:NIO) and Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA) — is prepping for a U.S. IPO.

Plus, excitement is generally returning to the EV space in the U.S. Tesla fans have been cheering on as CEO Elon Musk found success with his SpaceX launch. Nikola (NASDAQ:NKLA), which just made its public debut, announced a preorder date for its “Badger” electric truck. Shares are up more than 80% in intraday trading on the news.

With that in mind, InvestorPlace’s David Moadel revisited the EV space today and made four recommendations. Citing calls for the international EV fleet to hit 130 million by 2030, Moadel is bullish on these names, especially in the post-pandemic world.

Here’s what he’s recommending now:

  • Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA)
  • Nio (NYSE:NIO)
  • Ford (NYSE:F)
  • Kandi Technologies Group (NASDAQ:KNDI)

AstraZeneca and Gilead Stock Sparkle on Merger Rumors

[Monday, June 8, 1:33 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Another day, another round of headlines about Gilead Sciences (NASDAQ:GILD). But this time, the news isn’t just about its remdesivir treatment for the novel coronavirus.

Over the weekend, Bloomberg’s Ed Hammond, Aaron Kirchfield and Dinesh Nair reported that pharmaceutical giant AstraZeneca (NYSE:AZN) was making a move for Gilead. Apparently informal talks first began a month ago, but Gilead isn’t interested in a sale. One thing for investors to note is that for now, this is all a matter of speculation. AstraZeneca isn’t confirming interest in a merger.

As of Friday, AstraZeneca’s market capitalization was $140 billion. Gilead’s was $96 billion. If such a merger were to happen, it would be the largest in the healthcare world. Granted, experts are now saying a tie-up isn’t likely, but that doesn’t mean bulls should shrug off this story.

For one, Axios’ Dan Primack wrote the rumors could start a wave of coronavirus-related merger talk in the pharmaceutical space, especially as companies team up to develop vaccines and other treatments. AstraZeneca — a participant in President Donald Trump’s Operation Warp Speed — is already collaborating with researchers at the University of Oxford on its vaccine candidate.

Plus, as SVB Leerink analyst Geoffrey Porges wrote about the news, most mergers in this sector emerge in times of distress. This rumored tie-up then stands out, as both companies are success stories in 2020. In other words, bulls should see AstraZeneca and AZN stock as highly attractive right now. Gilead may not be too hot on a deal, but AstraZeneca could pivot and pick another M&A target.

Here’s a final bullish note. Gilead stock has been both lauded and criticized, and shares are now up just slightly in intraday trading. Look at AstraZeneca’s interest as a good sign that GILD shares are worth your investment dollars here.

Buy Dunkin Donuts Stock for a Major Hiring Spree

[Monday, June 8, 12:31 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Oh, Dunkin’ Brands (NASDAQ:DNKN), how I love thee. There’s something so familiar about its iced coffee drinks and signature doughnuts. In fact, that’s likely why the company is holding up well amid a pandemic, and is even moving to hire 25,000 new employees across the U.S.

According to a company press release, Dunkin’s franchisees will begin welcoming 25,000 new employees at locations around the country. This move comes as the chain prepares for the “America reopening” catalyst that appears to be underway. Dunkin’ Donuts is so intent on this hiring spree that it’s even rolling out a national advertising campaign — a first for the company.

Investors like this news. DNKN stock is up 2.1% in intraday trading and is still climbing higher. That’s because some analysts worried that breakfast-focused chains wouldn’t benefit from the reopening rally. But as Barron’s Teresa Rivas wrote this morning, 25,000 new employees certainly isn’t a sign of a struggling company. With this in mind, Keybanc analyst Eric Gonzalez just boosted his rating from “sector weight” to “overweight” and set a $78 price target. Shares currently trade near $70.

So, why is Dunkin’ Brands seeing relative success? Well, America runs on the company’s coffee and doughnuts, or in other words, it benefits from strong brand loyalty. That’s why InvestorPlace analyst Eric Fry recently recommended DNKN stock. He wrote that it already has a strong following, but that there’s still room for brand growth. Plus, its takeout and delivery options will help it benefit as some consumers maintain social distancing protocols for the weeks and months to come.

Grab your favorite coffee, send a Dunkin’ job posting to a friend or family member and have some confidence — thanks to a jolt of caffeine — while you buy DNKN stock here.

4 Stocks to Buy for Massive Infrastructure Reform

[Monday, June 8, 11:50 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

According to many economists, we’ve already hit the Great Depression. Unemployment figures are up, consumer spending is down. The novel coronavirus has wreaked havoc on the economy and the stock market, and it’s unclear just what the recovery will look like. To some, the answer is clear. Democrats in the House of Representatives are now pushing for an infrastructure stimulus, similar to former President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s Works Progress Administration.

The WPA gave Americans jobs. Workers built all sorts of community buildings — schools, libraries, hospitals. They also restored tunnels, highways and street lighting around the U.S.

Could modern-day infrastructure spending be the solution to today’s struggling economy? To some, the answer is yes. House Democrats recently introduced the Investing in a New Vision for the Environment and Surface Transportation in America Act. If passed, it would authorize $494 billion over five years to improve American infrastructure.

According to Smart Cities Dive’s Chris Teale, this legislation is considered a key part of Democrat’s plan to move forward from the pandemic. Plus, it tackles another important issue by specifically including grants for alternate fuel sources and electrification projects.

For investors, the bill in itself supports bullish sentiment, particularly as it would restore industries and jobs that sorely need help. But it also creates an argument for specific companies likely to benefit from increased infrastructure spending.

In the electrification world, a key stock to watch is Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA). Currently, one of the largest arguments against the hot electric vehicle maker is the lack of charging infrastructure. But as an industry leader, it is sure to benefit from EV spending.

When it comes to more traditional infrastructure plays, InvestorPlace’s Ian Cooper has three recommendations. He looked at the space in February, when talk of an infrastructure bill was just starting to circle. He picked Vulcan Materials (NYSE:VMC), Martin Marietta Materials (NYSE:MLM) and Aecom (NYSE:ACM). These companies provide construction materials as well as the engineering behind big projects.

Keep a close eye on the bill, and on ongoing infrastructure talk. Improving America’s highways may just be the answer to getting the country back on track.

Amazon’s Air Expansion Plans Make AMZN a Buy

[Monday, June 8, 10:07 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) shareholders are really lucky. The company is doing almost everything right — at least from an investing standpoint. It has completely dominated retail, and its e-commerce business is just gaining more popularity thanks to the novel coronavirus. Amazon’s Whole Foods and PillPack businesses also support home delivery trends. The list goes on and on, as the market leader touches cloud computing, streaming media and video games.

Now, it’s upping the stakes even more in the logistics world. According to Supply Chain Dive’s Matt Leonard, Amazon is expanding its Amazon Air fleet through its partnership with Air Transport Services Group (NASDAQ:ATSG), which we’ve previously recommended in this blog.

Essentially, Amazon will have 82 planes at the end of next year, and these planes support its one-day and two-day delivery initiatives. Back in 2019, the company also announced plans to build a “hub” for its fleet Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport.

Amazon keeps working to expand its in-house logistics. It competes with FedEx (NYSE:FDX) and United Parcel Service (NYSE:UPS), which currently have larger air fleets. But Amazon is a much larger company with much larger power. Many analysts are quick to assume that its expansion in the skies will bring great pain to the legacy logistics players.

Granted, Amazon’s air expansion will take a long time to play out, and concerns over its handling of the pandemic have marked the company. However, if you’re looking for a long-term growth play, there’s perhaps no better bet than infinitely innovative Amazon.

Stocks Open Higher Monday on Signs of Recovery

[Monday, June 8, 9:31 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Friday’s jobs report still has the bulls cheering, and stocks are looking for a repeat rally this week. Plus, news from around the world continues to support the idea that we’re in a post-pandemic recovery.

What does that mean? Well, the novel coronavirus decimated entire industries, and much of the economy. But now, even hard-hit New York City is beginning to reopen today. New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced that the country had “eliminated” the virus, as the last patient with Covid-19 had recovered.

For airlines, cruise ships and casinos, expect this news to bring big things. According to Yahoo Finance’s Emily McCormick, a travel and leisure rally is already underway. For the S&P 500Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite, that means Monday is starting off in the green.

  • The S&P 500 opened higher by 0.69%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average opened higher by 0.94%
  • The Nasdaq Composite opened higher by 0.16%

Buy Gilead Stock on New Remdesivir Pricing Estimates

[Friday, June 5, 4:37 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Gilead Sciences (NASDAQ:GILD) was skyrocketing higher just a few weeks ago, but now it’s far from many investors’ minds. Sure, states are reopening, but novel coronavirus cases haven’t disappeared. In other words, despite the market’s loss of interest in Gilead and its remdesivir treatment, GILD stock remains a buy.

That’s right. Gilead is moving ahead with its remdesivir, and analysts are hopping on the bandwagon. SVB Leerink analyst Geoffrey Porges — who is respected for his pharmaceutical insight — is confident that the drug won’t be a flop. One of investors’ main concerns has been whether or not Gilead will be able to profit from remdesivir, especially as the company has donated doses to hospitals and research organizations around the world.

But Porges isn’t worried. In fact, he believes Gilead will price remdesivir — which it has now branded as Veklury — at $5,000 per dose. With this in mind, he upgraded his rating on GILD stock to “outperform” and set a $94 price target. Shares currently trade for just below $80.

To be fair, the antiviral drug is perhaps the most successful proposed treatment to date. The U.S. Food and Drug administration gave remdesivir emergency-use authorization, and Japan similarly issued an “exceptional approval” earlier in May.

But the potential — and remdesivir’s early success — shouldn’t completely discount the criticism. As Axios’ Bob Herman wrote, the data isn’t perfect. Remdesivir isn’t particularly helpful in severe cases, and even the company has admitted the antiviral likely isn’t enough to be used alone in hospital treatment.

Acknowledging this criticism doesn’t mean giving up on GILD stock. The data isn’t perfect, but it shows that remdesivir is still effective. It reduces the average hospital stay from 15 days to 11 days. Plus, any treatment for a life-changing virus is likely to meet broad consumer support. That’s why InvestorPlace’s Larry Ramer has long agreed with Ramer. After considering all the facts, he’s still urging investors to buy shares and hold them for the long term.

Bullish on Online Gambling? Buy the BETZ ETF.

[Friday, June 5, 4:15 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

All it took was a pandemic to thrust the casino and sports betting industries into the spotlight. In just a few weeks, companies that made in-person activities possible in the virtual world became red hot. And just because casinos in places like Las Vegas are starting to reopen doesn’t mean the online offerings will disappear. Investors are in luck, as the Roundhill Investments Sports Betting & iGaming ETF (NYSEARCA:BETZ) just launched.

According to Barron’s Connor Smith, there’s a lot to like about this exchange-traded fund. It focuses on an increasingly popular investing opportunity, as consumers download gambling apps en masse. Plus, pent-up demand for live sporting events is likely to translate to a massive rebound for sports betting companies once athletes return to stadiums.

In general, Smith also writes that now is a good time for thematic ETFs. The pandemic has familiarized investors with stay-at-home stocks, work-from-home stocks and all sorts of other coronavirus plays. An ETF that focuses on virtual gambling — perfect for time in quarantine — sounds pretty ideal.

The BETZ ETF comes with an expense ratio of 0.75%, or $75 on an initial $10,000 investment. Its top holdings include DraftKings (NASDAQ:DKNG), Penn National Gaming (NASDAQ:PENN) and Irish shares of Flutter Entertainment, the parent company of FanDuel.

Still not convinced? Roundhill Investments looks to be rather savvy when it comes to following trends. Last year, it launched the Roundhill BITKRAFT ESports & Digital Entertainment ET  (NYSEARCA:NERD). Shares of that fund are up almost 30% since its inception.

5 Stocks to Buy for a Democratic White House in 2020

[Friday, June 5, 12:02 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

If you spend even a few seconds reading the news or scrolling through social media, you’ll see that President Donald Trump is stirring up controversy. Americans are upset over his current handling of nationwide protests — including his decision to bring in the troops. But even before the protests began, they were upset about the novel coronavirus.

Much of Trump’s presidency was about the economy. He talked about taxes, he focused on business. Stock market growth under his tenure was, up until recently, quite impressive. But Trump’s response to the pandemic has drawn a lot of criticism. According to analysts at Goldman Sachs, high unemployment numbers and a contraction in GDP growth won’t help the president come November.

In other words, Goldman Sachs is now betting on a Democrat win (subscription required). According to the analysts, former Vice President Joe Biden is starting to stand out in a big way. Photos of him talking with protesters have gone viral. Biden’s even wearing a face mask in his Twitter (NYSE:TWTR) photo.

Granted, a lot can change between now and November. But the pandemic isn’t likely to be off anyone’s radar come election day, and that means it’s time to take note. Back in January, InvestorPlace’s Josh Enomoto picked five stocks he thought would particularly benefit if a Democrat was in the White House in 2021. His recommendations address key policy issues like marijuana legalization and healthcare reform. If Goldman Sachs is right, you don’t want to miss out.

Here are the five stocks Enomoto thinks would benefit from a Biden presidency:

  • Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA)
  • Walmart (NYSE:WMT)
  • CarMax (NYSE:KMX)
  • Cronos Group (NASDAQ:CRON)
  • HCA Healthcare (NYSE:HCA)

Stocks Rally Hard on Positive Payrolls Numbers

[Friday, June 5, 9:33 a.m.]
Contributed by Jessica Loder

Well, it’s looking like a good way to end the first week of June. Stocks took a sharp upward turn premarket as U.S. payrolls unexpectedly climbed by 2.5 million, dropping the unemployment rate to 13.3%.

Expectations were for a loss of another 7.5 million non-farm payrolls for an unemployment rate of 19%.

The largest rebound was in the travel and leisure sectors, and it’s no wonder – they had taken the hardest hit, so there are plenty of jobs to make up there. But they weren’t alone. According to Yahoo!, “Within the services sector, only the transportation and warehousing, utilities, and information industries extended job losses from April.” It also pointed out government payrolls also remained down

The markets are celebrating on the good news, shedding the uncertainty of yesterday. The S&P 500, Dow Jones and Nasdaq are all up premarket.

  • The S&P 500 opened higher by 2.05%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average opened higher by 2.87%
  • The Nasdaq Composite opened higher by 0.57%

Stocks Close Down Thursday as Rally Fails to Hold

[Thursday, June 4, 4:01 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Well, there goes the rally — at least for now. Stocks closed down on Thursday, but with reopening plans accelerating around the world, it’s likely the market will be headed higher again soon.

It looks like today investors simply couldn’t stomach the combination of ongoing protests and a worse-than-expected jobless claims number. Plus, on the docket for tomorrow is the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ May report. Many experts expect the unemployment rate to hit 20% in that update.

If anything, these reports are a good reminder that despite a push for reopening, there are still wounds in the economy. Not all businesses will reopen, and those that are must still figure out what the new normal looks like.

With all that in mind, the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq Composite closed Thursday in the red. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fared slightly better, closing in the green.

  • The S&P 500 closed lower by 0.34%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed higher by 0.05%
  • The Nasdaq Composite closed lower by 0.69%

The 2 Best Stocks to Buy for an Airline Recovery

[Thursday, June 4, 3:25 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Boy, American Airlines (NASDAQ:AAL) sparked a nice industry rally today. Shares are up 35% in intraday trading on news that the airline was boosting its flight capacity after some scary months. Next month, it will resume 55% of its July 2019 schedule. According to Reuters’ David Shepardson, the last few months have seen around 20%-25% of American’s typical capacity.

Does this news really mean you should rush to buy AAL stock now? Perhaps not. Some critics are quick to point out that American has its fair share of problems, and its financial situation is much less solid than its peers Delta Air Lines (NYSE:DAL) and Southwest Airlines (NYSE:LUV). In fact, InvestorPlace analyst Matt McCall warned readers today that despite the temptations in broad sector exchange-traded funds, it isn’t the right time to jump all in.

Thankfully, Barron’s Al Root has a clever solution that lets investors profit from the rebound without risking too much. Instead of chasing the passenger carriers just yet, look for better plays. He spoke with Credit Suisse analyst Robert Spingarn, who’s recommending aerospace suppliers Boeing (NYSE:BA) and Airbus (OTCMKTS:EADSY) right now.

Sure, demand for new airplanes and parts dropped in 2020, and Boeing hasn’t resolved its 737 Max crisis yet. But these stocks haven’t gotten a chance at a rebound yet, and Spingarn thinks that rebound is now overdue after others in the aerospace world have bounced off the lows.

Need any more proof? Boeing shares are already up 5% and Airbus shares almost 4% on American’s news. It’s clear a broader industry recovery will benefit these hurting companies.

Alibaba Stock Is a Buy on Its Small Business Innovations

[Thursday, June 4, 3:00 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

There’s been a common narrative in retail since the novel coronavirus wreaked havoc on the economy. E-commerce companies win, and brick-and-mortar retailers, particularly those that are small businesses, lose. But what happens when an e-commerce company positions itself as an answer to small business woes? Well, let’s take a look at Alibaba (NYSE:BABA).

Alibaba has long been the Chinese equivalent of Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN). Each has its own turf, and they’ve grown in separate spheres. Now Alibaba is growing it’s U.S. presence at an impressive rate. According to Business Insider’s Bethany Biron, U.S. buyers have increased 70% year-over-year and transactions by American businesses on have increased by more than 100%.

The e-commerce star first allowed U.S. companies to make “storefronts” in July 2019, focusing this offering on small and medium-sized businesses. At the time, Retail Brew’s Halie LeSavage wrote this was a clever way for the company to form alliances as the U.S.-China trade war dragged on.

Now, once again, Alibaba is positioning itself as an ally to small businesses. Its new offerings include extended invoice periods, a freight partnership to help with deliveries and virtual trade shows to make up for lost in-person marketing time. This is a smart move, and the solutions could legitimately help small businesses as they pivot and try to get back on their feet.

It also should have investors excited, because it shows Alibaba can succeed even in Amazon’s home market. Small businesses are likely to be wary of Amazon, especially as concerns rise around its treatment of third-party sellers and their data. In other words, pay close to attention to BABA stock.

Shares are up just slightly in 2020, after a steep fall in early March threw the stock off course. But it’s moving higher, and looks like a buy here. InvestorPlace analyst Louis Navellier agrees, writing this week that it’s the perfect growth investment for the post-pandemic world.

5 Vaccine Stocks to Buy for Operation Warp Speed

[Thursday, June 4, 2:21 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

All around the world there has been a push for a novel coronavirus vaccine, and researchers — at publicly traded companies, private firms and even some universities — have answered the call. Now, the race is heating up as attention and funding start funneling to a narrowing list of vaccine candidates.

This is all part of President Donald Trump’s Operation Warp Speed, which hopes to rapidly develop, test and manufacture a vaccine in the U.S. By January 2021, he and his administration hope to begin “deploying” the vaccine across the country, using the military as needed. The mission started with a broad list, but now it’s narrowing. According to reporting from The New York Times and Bloomberg, five key companies are moving to the next phase.

Sources told The New York Times’ Noah Weiland and David Sanger that Moderna (NASDAQ:MRNA), Merck (NYSE:MRK), Pfizer (NYSE:PFE), Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ) and AstraZeneca (NYSE:AZN) are the companies most likely to successfully produce a vaccine, and therefore are the five companies moving on in the process. Bloomberg’s Riley Griffin and Jennifer Jacobs report the same list, but mention two unnamed firms also moving ahead.

There’s a lot to take away from this news. First, it’s a good indicator of which vaccine stocks are likely to keep paying off for investors. Moderna is a smaller firm, but it’s had some of the earliest success in its clinical-stage trials. Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation’s leading infectious disease expert, said he expects to see its candidate move into the final phases of trials next month. The other names on this list offer a lot of manufacturing power and solid experience in the pharmaceutical world.

Second, there are some key names missing from this list. Investors have rallied behind Inovio Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:INO) and Novavax (NASDAQ:NVAX), not to mention countless other innovative names. But Inovio apparently didn’t make the cut. However, BioPharma Dive’s Ned Pagliarulo isn’t ruling out that INO or NVAX is one of the unnamed firms moving onto the final round.

Evaluate your vaccine holdings against this list, and think critically. Operation Warp Speed isn’t the only factor that matters, but it will carry a lot of weight. To me, it seems like those that are advancing seem to be the safest bets here.

Buy XpresSpa Stock for Its Unique Coronavirus Approach

[Thursday, June 4, 12:29 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

You’ve likely seen the data from the Transportation Security Administration and heard anecdotes from friends who have chosen to fly again. Yes, demand is returning, and even summer vacation is back on the calendar for many families. But how exactly is this return to the skies happening?

In large part, it’s thanks to efforts to keep airports and planes clean, and then to communicate that elevated safety level to potential passengers. XpresSpa (NASDAQ:XSPA), a company that typically provides services like massages and waxing in airports, is benefiting from this reality.

On Thursday, shares of XSPA stock are up more than 75% in intraday trading. This stock has been on a tear since announcing a partnership with the John F. Kennedy International Airport. Now, while its spa services are closed, it will operate a testing center in one of the airport terminals. This will ensure workers who come in close contact with passengers — like TSA agents and U.S. Customs and Border Control officials — are not infected with the novel coronavirus.

For now, XpresSpa will work on constructing the testing site, which will have nine separate rooms. According to MarketWatch’s Tomi Kilgore, XpresSpa will be able to test 500 employees a day.

Sure, this deal is in one airport, and it affects 500 employees a day. But the company is already working with the Port Authority in New York and New Jersey to offer other testing sites to get transportation services up and running at pre-pandemic levels. If XpresSpa can deliver on this testing site and continue to expand its coronavirus offerings, consider picking up some shares.

Remember, many Americans are counting on increased testing and safety protocols for a safe and large-scale reopening.

7 Defense Stocks to Buy to Protect Your Portfolio Now

[Thursday, June 4, 12:05 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

It has been a tough couple of months for Americans. The year started with flaring geopolitical tensions, after the U.S. military struck and killed Iran’s Qasem Soleimani. A pandemic hit — and continues to kill people around the world. Now, the U.S. faces two more crises. Relations with China are on the brink, and social unrest over police brutality has sparked protests around the country.

There’s a lot of uncertainty here. From a purely market-focused view, InvestorPlace analysts John Jagerson and Wade Hansen wrote today that the protests were unlikely to broadly affect stocks. But that doesn’t mean there isn’t good reason to stay informed.

Investing in times of uncertainty is tough, and right now a lot of sectors lack luster. That’s why InvestorPlace analyst Louis Navellier is recommending defense stocks — and no, not just weapons manufacturers. These stocks are reliable, and nothing keeps them down for very long.

If you’re worried about your portfolio, check out Navellier’s seven recommendations now:

  • TransDigm Group (NYSE:TDG)
  • Northrop Grumman  (NYSE:NOC)
  • Lockheed Martin (NYSE:LMT)
  • Mercury Systems (NASDAQ:MRCY)
  • Aerojet Rocketdyne (NYSE:AJRD)
  • BWX Technologies (NYSE:BWXT)
  • Leidos Holdings (NYSE:LDOS)

Stocks Open Lower Thursday on Jobless Claims Report

[Thursday, June 4, 9:31 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

It looks like the rally met its match — 1.9 million more Americans filing for initial unemployment benefits. This number came in worse than economists’ consensus estimate, and for many investors, it’s likely a wake-up call that the reopening process isn’t completely smooth.

As Axios’ Courtenay Brown wrote early Thursday, tomorrow morning’s look at the May jobs report is also likely to move the market. Right now, many expect the unemployment rate to hit 19.8%. With all this in mind — plus protests continuing across the nation — the major indices stumbled.

Yes, that’s right. After days of an incredibly resilient rally, the S&P 500, the Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite opened in the red.

  • The S&P 500 opened lower by 0.46%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average opened lower by 0.37%
  • The Nasdaq Composite opened lower by 0.34%

7 Dental Stocks to Buy as Non-Essential Offices Reopen

[Wednesday, June 3, 4:37 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

During the peak of the novel coronavirus in the United States, many non-essential healthcare offices closed. Among them were dentists, causing dental stocks to greatly underperform the broader market so far in 2020. But InvestorPlace’s Will Ashworth now sees these stocks as great buying opportunities.

According to Ashworth, his recommendations are a little contrarian. Many experts are working to predict what post-pandemic healthcare will look like, and some have suggested that tech and diagnostic firms will succeed while dental equipment suppliers will suffer.

But as Ashworth wrote today, dentists will never go out of style. With that in mind, he picked seven dental stocks to buy, specifying that gains were likely to come in the long term. If you’re looking for a serious chance to benefit from an industry-wide rebound, you can’t ignore this.

Here are the stocks Ashworth is recommending now:

  • Henry Schein (NASDAQ:HSIC)
  • 3D Systems (NYSE:DDD)
  • Dentsply Sirona (NASDAQ:XRAY)
  • Patterson Companies (NASDAQ:PDCO)
  • Procter & Gamble (NYSE:PG)
  • SmileDirectClub (NASDAQ:SDC)
  • Envista Holdings (NYSE:NVST)

Dow Adds 500+ Points to Close Higher Wednesday

[Wednesday, June 3, 4:01 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Private payroll cuts slimmed in May, and investors started Wednesday on an optimistic note with that news in mind. As trading progressed, nothing could hold the major indices back, and the Dow Jones Industrial Average closed higher by more than 500 points.

Protests continue across the U.S. in regards to George Floyd’s death at the hands of former Minneapolis police officers. Minnesota officials have now charged three other former officers, and upgraded charges against Derek Chauvin to second-degree murder from third-degree murder.

Other noteworthy news moving stocks comes from tech stars Zoom Video (NASDAQ:ZM) and CrowdStrike (NASDAQ:CRWD). Both companies reported better-than-expected earnings and are leading the market higher on Wednesday.

As the rally continues, the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq Composite joined the Dow in the green.

  • The S&P 500 closed higher by 1.36%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed higher by 2.05%
  • The Nasdaq Composite closed higher by 0.78%

Is Once High-Flying Amarin Stock a Buy Again?

[Wednesday, June 3, 3:40 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Remember Amarin (NASDAQ:AMRN)? For weeks investors debated its merits, comparing it to other drug companies pursuing treatments for cardiovascular disease. Shares went from 2020 highs above $20 to lows just below $4. Now, AMRN stock has rebounded slightly, but it’s no longer receiving the love and praise it once was.

According to The Wall Street Journal, the company may be getting a second chance.

What happened? In December Amarin’s Vascepa became the first drug to receive U.S. Food and Drug Administration approval for individuals at higher risk of cardiovascular events like heart attacks and strokes. The fish oil treatment was designed for those who were already taking cholesterol-lowering statin medications.

Investors loved this medicinal breakthrough, although some questioned its “fishiness.” Then, shares tanked in March. A court found that patents Amarin had filed on behalf of a generic version of Vascepa were invalid, allowing competitors to step into the space. AMRN stock suddenly became much less attractive.

But now, as The Wall Street Journal’s Jared Hopkins and Betsy McKay reported, doctors are studying heart medications like Vascepa for potential use in novel coronavirus cases. Many patients are experiencing elevated cardiovascular risk while hospitalized, and scientists want to know if there’s a way to prevent those complications. Amarin is answering the call.

According to the company, its Vascepa is now being studied in coronavirus patients. The trial is looking to see if it has antiviral or antimicrobial effects, and whether it can mitigate cardiac damage in those who are sick. A third part of the study is determining whether Vascepa has any anti-inflammatory effects.

Shares are struggling, and it’s unclear if trial results can give AMRN stock a true second chance. However, bullish investors shouldn’t completely discount Amarin’s potential here.

FSD Pharma Stock Climbs on News of Coronavirus Study

[Wednesday, June 3, 3:09 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

In huge news for investors, FSD Pharma (NASDAQ:HUGE) stock is up 150% today. The company reported Wednesday morning that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration granted it approval to submit an investigational new drug application (IND). Essentially, an IND is a key step companies must take before conducting a human trial of an investigational drug.

So what is this proposed trial all about? FSD Pharma is working on FSD-201, and yes, it’s for the novel coronavirus. However, unlike candidates from Gilead Sciences (NASDAQ:GILD) and Regeneron (NASDAQ:REGN), FSD-201 isn’t designed to specifically fight the virus. Instead, it’s a treatment for one of its many potentially fatal side effects.

As we previously reported in this blog, Covid-19 comes with a handful of sometimes inexplicable symptoms. These include toe blisters, clotting disorders and organ failure. One of particular interest to FSD Pharma is something called a cytokine storm. According to the company, severe cases of the virus are accompanied by a cytokine storm, which is essentially an extreme immune response. The body works to fight the disease, but it goes into overdrive, and can potentially cause death.

According to a professor at Tufts University, understanding the link between the coronavirus and cytokine storms could be the key to solving the pandemic. If FSD Pharma can make this immune occurrence less deadly, it will restore a lot of confidence and give hope to even the sickest of patients.

As with all companies racing to fight the virus, there’s both a lot of risk and potential reward here. Keep a close eye on HUGE stock.

7 Hotel Stocks to Buy to Get Ahead of the Reopening Rally

[Wednesday, June 3, 12:53 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Pent-up demand really is a powerful catalyst, as Memorial Day weekend crowds proved. Summer vacations are back on Americans’ calendars, and demand for flights and hotels are returning. The travel industry is responding in turn, working to convince consumers a trip to the beach or lake comes with very few risks.

As MarketWatch reported, many brand-name hotels have partnered with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to develop new cleaning standards. For many consumers, that will go a long way to restoring peace of mind. Some hotels in Maine are running contests for prizes — like free stays — to attract guests. Hotels in Thailand are offering “luxury quarantine” packages as a way to keep occupancy rates up.

For InvestorPlace’s Chris Lau, these headlines are a sign that it’s time to start buying hotel stocks ahead of an even bigger rally. Granted, he acknowledges that some top summer destinations will likely become remote state parks, and camping doesn’t actually give revenue to big hotels. However, states are slowly encouraging travel and a rally is no doubt coming.

With that in mind, here are seven hotel stocks he’s recommending now:

  • Marriott International (NASDAQ:MAR)
  • Hilton Worldwide (NYSE:HLT)
  • Wynn Resources (NASDAQ:WYNN)
  • MGM Resorts International (NYSE:MGM)
  • Hyatt Hotels (NYSE:H)
  • Royal Caribbean Cruises (NYSE:RCL)
  • InterContinental Hotels (NYSE:IHG)

Upcoming Gaming IPOs Are Reason for Bullish Cheer

[Wednesday, June 3, 11:57 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Gaming has been an escape — and a means of killing newfound time — since the novel coronavirus first began disrupting daily life. Console sales spiked, game sales spiked and the number of people playing online games at any one point hit record highs. Even mobile games found success, and companies like Zynga (NASDAQ:ZNGA) racked up buy recommendations.

Now, Axios’ Dan Primack has some exciting news in the IPO world. Remember, this week marked a major return to initial public offerings — and the biggest debut year to date. According to Primack, two companies are prepping for IPOs, and their businesses center on mobile and casual gaming.

South Korea’s DoubleDown Interactive filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange commission to raise on Tuesday to raise up to $100 million. DoubleDown develops and publishes mobile and web-based games, including DoubleDown CasinoDoubleDown Fort Knox and Ellen’s Road to Riches. According to Renaissance Capital, the company averages 3 million players per month and brought in $281 million in revenue in the last year.

One key thing to note here is how popular the digital world of gambling has become amid the pandemic. Just today, InvestorPlace’s Mark Hake shared his bullish take on Penn National Gaming (NASDAQ:PENN) — and one of his key areas of interest was its online offerings.

The other key IPO to watch is Playtika. The company is based in Israel, but is owned currently by a Chinese investment group. Like DoubleDown, it produces casino-themed mobile games, and runs apps for poker and solitaire. According to Reuters, the IPO could raise as much as $1 billion.

Wayfair Stock Is Still a Buy as E-Commerce Dominates

[Wednesday, June 3, 10:39 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

The novel coronavirus is accelerating adoption of e-commerce. Brick-and-mortar retailers are the biggest losers, and those with strong digital presence are winners. Americans took time in lockdown to embrace home-improvement projects, and a number of stocks standout as a result. Wayfair (NYSE:W), which we’ve recommended in this blog before, is up 100% in 2020 and 700% since March.

No, that isn’t a typo, and the massive rally doesn’t mean that it’s time to sell Wayfair stock. In fact, Piper Sandler analyst Peter Keith is confident shares will keep climbing. According to Barron’s Eric Savitz, the analyst is so confident that he just raised his price target from $220 to $225. Shares currently trade for just under $190.

A big part of Keith’s argument is simply that more consumers are now comfortable with online shopping for various products, including furniture and other home goods. They’ve realized how convenient Wayfair is, so they’ll keep using the site as they tackle home-improvement projects. One key point of evidence for this is that in May, even as states began reopening, Wayfair’s sales did not decelerate.

InvestorPlace’s Josh Enomoto agrees, acknowledging that to many his “buy” recommendation on Wayfair sounds contrarian. He wrote late last week that Wayfair is likely to benefit from three big catalysts, including growth in the real estate market, an improving unemployment landscape and the strength of big cities. In other words, the panic filling the headlines isn’t the full story.

According to Savitz, there’s one more timely catalyst. As protests across the U.S. continue to result in damage to brick-and-mortar retailers, companies with an online focus such as Wayfair will benefit.

4 Silver Stocks to Buy for Pandemic Portfolio Protection

[Wednesday, June 3, 10:17 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

We often report in this blog about the power of gold stocks, writing just yesterday about extraordinary gains that are soon to come. But InvestorPlace’s Tezcan Gecgil is encouraging investors not to forget about the power of silver stocks, too.

Yesterday, Gecgil wrote that just like gold, silver can be a powerful portfolio hedge. Some hold the physical metal, others clutch onto silver stocks as fears of inflation rise. Right now, silver is underperforming, and it’s particularly cheap relative to gold. But Gecgil — and many others on Wall Street — believe a rally in silver stocks is just around the corner.

If you agree with Gecgil, or are perhaps just a fan of that scout song, here are the four silver stocks she’s recommending now:

  • Hecla Mining (NYSE:HL)
  • Mag Silver (NYSEMKT:MAG)
  • Silvercorp Metals (NYSEMKT:SVM)
  • Global X Silver Miners ETF (NYSEARCA:SIL)

Stocks Open Higher Wednesday Despite Continued Protests

[Wednesday, June 3, 9:31 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Nope, nothing has changed. Stocks continued their rally Wednesday morning, and so did protests across the United States. Helicopters and additional military units are now present in Washington, D.C. Investors still don’t seem to care as they chase the reopening rebound.

Those bulls were rewarded this morning with an estimate-beating private payroll report from ADP. Economists predicted that U.S. employers would cut 9 million private payrolls in May, but the number instead came in just below 2.8 million. That’s strikingly better than the almost 20 million private payrolls cut in April.

It looks like nothing can shake the rally today — or perhaps for the rest of the week. The S&P 500, the Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite once again opened in the green.

  • The S&P 500 opened higher by 0.69%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average opened higher by 0.84%
  • The Nasdaq Composite opened higher by 0.59%

Stocks Close Higher Tuesday on Curious Optimism

[Tuesday, June 2, 4:01 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Stocks once again closed higher, on what only can be called curious optimism. Yahoo Finance’s Brian Sozzi, in talking with different market strategists, concluded that investors must not be worried about ongoing protests across the U.S. and the potential for a second wave of the novel coronavirus. Why? As Heritage Capital CIO Paul Schatz said, investors simply believe it all won’t hurt the stock market.

For now, it’s too early to tell if those confident investors are right.

At the same time, some economic indicators are continuing to trend higher. Four companies are prepping for initial public offerings this week, including one IPO that will be the largest year to date. As we reported this morning, a key manufacturing index is trending higher. Plus, the number of Americans filing for unemployment benefits each week has been dropping.

It’s an uneasy balancing act, but the bulls are winning. On Tuesday, the S&P 500, the Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite all closed in the green.

  • The S&P 500 closed higher by 0.82%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed higher by 1.05%
  • The Nasdaq Composite closed higher by 0.59%

Buy Home Depot and Lowe’s Stock as DIY Spirit Grows

[Tuesday, June 2, 3:43 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

There’s something about spending endless hours at home that provokes the do-it-yourself mentality. Perhaps it’s the frustration that grows from staring at unsavory parts of a home or garden, or maybe an urge to introduce creativity to time in quarantine. Regardless, DIY spirit is growing, and Home Depot  (NYSE:HD) and Lowe’s (NYSE:LOW) stock are benefiting.

Commenting on this trend, InvestorPlace’s Dana Blankenhorn took a look at both home-improvement stocks. His conclusion was that Home Depot is more popular with contractors, making its business slightly riskier. On the other hand, he sees Lowe’s as better suited for the curious homeowner. First-quarter sales at both companies were up despite the novel coronavirus.

At the time, Blankenhorn cautioned that although each offers a dividend and relatively stable business, a prolonged recession would be damaging to the duo. Now, summer is here and all U.S. states are taking steps to reopen.

That bodes well for the home-improvement stocks here. Consumers that began projects in quarantine will face inspiration from warm weather on weekends, and many white-collar workers will remain at home for weeks and months to come. Plus, as non-essential businesses get the green light to reopen, contractors and other home-improvement businesses will resume work.

Reporting from Retail Dive’s Tatiana Walk-Morris also should bring investors some excitement. In mid-May, Apptopia data showed that downloads of Home Depot and Lowe’s apps were through the roof. Digital sales, in turn, spiked for both companies. This shows that the home-improvement retailers are quickly pivoting to consumer preference.

Today, Walk-Morris shared even more exciting news. Lowe’s is rolling out an augmented reality tool for home-improvement professionals. That way, if consumers don’t feel comfortable opening their homes just yet, important business can continue through virtual design appointments. This keeps professionals and homeowners safe, and speaks highlight of Lowe’s innovative abilities.

It’s clear that Home Depot and Lowe’s are far from boring investments, and they both offer big potential here. Download the apps, start planning and stay safe.

6 Gambling Stocks to Buy as Las Vegas Reopens

[Tuesday, June 2, 3:16 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Over the last several weeks, much of the conversation around casinos has been focused on the hypothetical. Some investors have developed theories about big rebounds when casinos and race tracks reopen. Others have flocked to online betting plays and League of Legends tournaments. Now though, there’s no longer a need to be hypothetical. The Las Vegas Strip reopens Thursday, June 4.

According to CNN’s Matt Villano, Las Vegas will likely still be an escape for tourists, but it will look different. Nightclubs and spas will broadly remain closed, and some large events aren’t returning anytime soon. However, hotels and casinos are reopening — with a few adjustments.

Now that there’s a plan in place, investors have a chance to buy gambling stocks for a more concrete reopening rebound. That’s why InvestorPlace’s David Moadel is recommending gambling stocks now. In his first set of recommendations, he acknowledges that these are speculative plays — just like the games themselves. But they’re beaten-down and ready to shoot higher.

Yesterday, he added one more stock to his “buy” list. According to Moadel, MGM Resorts (NYSE:MGM) is “mangled” but worthy of investor attention right now. That’s because with Las Vegas reopening, it’s only a matter of time before Wall Street hops on the gambling bandwagon. When it does, these names will be big winners.

Here are the six stocks he’s recommending now:

  • Las Vegas Sands (NYSE:LVS)
  • Caesars Entertainment (NASDAQ:CZR)
  • Esports Entertainment (NASDAQ:GMBL)
  • Boyd Gaming (NYSE:BYD)
  • Penn National Gaming (NASDAQ:PENN)
  • MGM Resorts (NYSE:MGM)

Buy CVS Stock on News of Autonomous Delivery Program

[Tuesday, June 2, 2:45 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

There are many reasons to like CVS Health (NYSE:CVS) amid the novel coronavirus pandemic. Some locations offer testing, and all carry critical over-the-counter medications and essential goods. As InvestorPlace’s Dana Blankenhorn often highlights, its pharmacy business is top notch. Recent news makes that case even clearer, as CVS moves into robotic prescription delivery.

In a May 28 press release, robotics company Nuro announced it had entered into a partnership with CVS to pilot autonomous prescription delivery. Granted, this is small scale to start. Three zip codes near Houston will participate in the program.

CVS already offers home delivery of prescriptions, but moving into the realm of autonomous delivery is exciting and holds great potential. To start, customers can request their prescriptions for autonomous delivery, and Nuro’s fleet of self-driving Prius vehicles will do the job. Eventually, Nuro will swap the Prius fleet out for its unique R2 robot.

Both Nuro and CVS note the importance of increasing prescription accessibility and convenience — and the novel coronavirus certainly plays into that. In a blog post about the partnership, the Nuro team wrote that such a move can help protect vulnerable people, such as the elderly, as well as simply ensure more Americans can remain safe at home.

That doesn’t mean this partnership will lose its luster as the coronavirus fades, however. If CVS manages to expand its autonomous delivery offerings to more cities, expect it to gain popularity. Americans love convenience, and it doesn’t get more convenient than this. The company is already known for its continued innovation, and it’s also a solid investment. InvestorPlace’s Josh Enomoto recently wrote that CVS is a top “boring stock” to buy. But nothing about robotic delivery is boring.

Whether you agree with Enomoto and appreciate CVS for its reliable pharmacy and health offerings, or you’re bullish on its autonomous delivery moves, it’s safe to say CVS stock is a buy here.

Inpixon Stock Climbs on Contact Tracing Promise

[Tuesday, June 2, 2:00 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Airplanes and cruise ships are two different forms of transportation that involve a lot of passengers in close-knit quarters. For operators, that means finding ways to reassure customers that traveling is safe, and that the novel coronavirus is not an increased threat on the seas or in the sky.

Inpixon (NASDAQ:INPX) CEO Nadir Ali excited investors today with the proposition that his company could play a big role in restoring travel demand. Inpixon is a so-called indoor intelligence company. Before the pandemic, it’s customers were shopping malls, big government offices and hospitals. Inpixon creates indoor maps, helps detect the locations of indoor gusts and provides analysis on indoor data.

Now, it’s looking to become relevant in pandemic-focused contact tracing. On May 12, Inpixon announced its Workplace Readiness Dashboards — a solution designed to help companies reopen. One of the key features of this announcement is that it will help business track the density of certain “zones.” Once a company knows one zone is hotter than another, it can take steps to spread out patrons and keep things safe.

That’s big news in itself, but Ali told USA Today that Inpixon is specifically looking to work with hotels, airlines and cruise ships as they welcome travelers back. That’s even bigger news. From Ali:

“If a certain deck is turning yellow to red, maybe [someone] needs to go make sure [it isn’t too crowded]. … If, God forbid, a patient starts developing symptoms or has come down with COVID-19 or some other virus or flu or something, [the cruise line] could also [ask if] that person can identify themselves,” he explained.”

This announcement is sure to be met with privacy concerns, as Inpixon would rely on information from Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and cell signals. But for investors, it’s another boost of confidence that battered names like Carnival (NYSE:CCL) and American Airlines (NASDAQ:AAL) are potentially profitable investments now. In turn, that makes Inpixon a worthy investment.

Investors agree. Shares are up more than 10% in intraday trading today.

4 Fitness Stocks to Buy as Americans Start Running

[Tuesday, June 2, 1:24 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Fitness has been a hotly debated topic amid the novel coronavirus. Some consumers want gyms open now. Others accept that at-home workouts are different, but just as effective. Major operator Gold’s Gym filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. In all this chaos, running is gaining popularity.

According to Yahoo Finance reporter Myles Udland, Americans feel more comfortable with solitary fitness options now — marking a shift from group fitness classes and crowded gyms. Private companies that focus on helping athletes train and track their runs are booming. Downloads of the Strava app are up 222% year-over-year.

What does this mean for investors? Udland suggests buying companies that are benefiting — and others that are likely to start benefiting — from an increase in running. A top contender is Nike (NYSE:NKE). The company’s clothing and shoes have an intense following, and the Nike Training Club app saw a year-over-year download spike of 510%.

Dick’s Sporting Goods (NYSE:DKS) and Deckers Outdoor (NYSE:DECK) are other potential fitness winners for investors to watch.

There’s another company not on Udland’s list that is still worth a buy here. According to Barron’s Teresa Rivas, Lululemon (NASDAQ:LULU) could see its market capitalization hit $50 billion. Rivas cites research from analyst John Kernan who has a “buy” rating and $311 price target on the stock.

Similar to Nike, Lululemon has a strong following. Its athleisure is popular at home and at the gym, and the company’s e-commerce options are boosting digital sales. Plus, it doesn’t rely on other retailers for its sales, which helps as brick-and-mortar retail continues to suffer.

So, next time you suit up for a run, consider the brands and apps you rep. Your favorite shoes — and whatever your favorite fitness influencer is recommending — are likely to be great investing opportunities.

Don’t Miss an Extraordinary Opportunity in Gold Now

[Tuesday, June 2, 11:57 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Barron’s Steven Sears shared gripping words with readers today. “As America burns, gold shines.” His commentary was literal, as protests in the U.S. periodically erupt into flames. Stocks have largely brushed off the unrest, even as President Donald Trump suggests further militarizing the country’s response. That doesn’t mean investors aren’t worried, though, as gold begins to rise.

Gold’s attraction now is not surprising, as it’s often known as a “crisis” or “safe-haven” investment. The metal similarly drew attention after the U.S. military killed Iran’s Qasem Soleimani and during the peak of the novel coronavirus crisis.

Some see gold as the perfect way to hedge a portfolio for times of chaos. If markets begin to crumble, those who hold physical gold have their wealth in their hands. Others simply view it as a hedge against inflation. As the Federal Reserve continues with an unprecedented bond-buying program, many investors have expressed fear over post-pandemic inflation rates.

Regardless of the reasoning, InvestorPlace analyst Eric Fry is bullish on gold and is encouraging investors to act now. He wrote this morning that Warren Buffett sees the metal as “lifeless” and “uncivilized,” but that’s not stopping him — or any of the rich people buying and hoarding gold now. In fact, Fry warns that those who take Buffett’s advice will miss out on extraordinary gains as gold shoots higher.

To conclude, Sears has one smart strategy to profit now. He recommends buying the September $165 call for the SPDR Gold Shares ETF (NYSEARCA:GLD) now. If GLD moves above $171, he says the call purchase will begin to generate profits.

8 Battery Stocks to Buy for Post-Pandemic Innovation

[Tuesday, June 2, 10:45 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Remember when Tesla’s (NASDAQ:TSLA) high-tech Cybertruck was enough to create a media frenzy? The novel coronavirus has disrupted so much of daily life, and these innovations weren’t exceptions. 5G. Artificial intelligence. Electric vehicles. They’ve fallen by the wayside, but they’ll be back soon.

According to InvestorPlace’s Josh Enomoto, we actually need this next-generation technology to move forward from the pandemic. And this pivot back to tech is already happening, as evidenced by growing work-from-home solutions and even creative new forms of entertainment. For investors, this means battery stocks are hot names to buy now.

Enomoto wrote today that these battery stocks will quite literally power the future. He mostly looks at the coveted lithium-ion battery, but he’s not ruling out potential found in alkaline batteries and even a tech retailer. Clearly, you don’t want to miss out.

Here’s are the eight battery stocks Enomoto is recommending now:

  • Sociedad Quimica y Minera de Chile (NYSE:SQM)
  • Albemarle (NYSE:ALB)
  • Energizer (NYSE:ENR)
  • Best Buy (NYSE:BBY)
  • Enphase Energy (NASDAQ:ENPH)
  • Panasonic (OTCMKTS:PCRFY)
  • Murata Manufacturing (OTCMKTS:MRAAF)
  • American Battery Metals Corp (OTCMKTS:ABML)

Stocks Open Higher Tuesday as the Rally Continues

[Tuesday, June 2, 9:39 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Protests over George Floyd, who Minneapolis police killed last week, continue around the U.S. and the world. President Donald Trump has continued to up the stakes. At the same time, many fear that these mass gatherings will result in a second wave of the novel coronavirus hitting America sooner than expected. In short, there’s no clear reason for stocks to be rallying.

Alas, stocks opened higher Tuesday as the rally continues. Perhaps investors are inspired by the Institute of Supply Management’s update to its manufacturing index. It hit 43.1 in May, and anything above 42.8 marks that the economy is not in a recession. The report seems to be an unlikely catalyst, but these days, it’s hard to tell for sure.

What will today bring? For now, the S&P 500Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite are all opening in the green.

  • The S&P 500 opened higher by 0.33%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average opened higher by 0.57%
  • The Nasdaq Composite opened higher by 0.11%

7 Unique Travel Stocks to Buy for Domestic Reopening

[Monday, June 1, 4:35 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Viral accounts of Memorial Day weekend travel prove that consumers are much more confident about reopening than previously expected. Packed beaches and pools show the power of pent-up demand. In fact, even air travel and cruise demand are rebounding after Americans spent months at home.

With this in mind, InvestorPlace analyst Louis Navellier is giving the all-clear signal to look for growth opportunities right now. He’s looking at travel stocks in particular, but not just at any name in the space. For instance, he’s focusing on domestic travel, because many international destinations remain on lockdown and are not accessible to American tourists right now.

Another part of his argument ties in social distancing. He wrote today that consumers are more likely to pick travel destinations that have adult-friendly entertainment, like casinos and race tracks. Plus, bigger casinos are better, because they allow gamblers to space out more to feel safe.

Here are the top out-of-the-box travel stocks Navellier is recommending now:

  • Penn National Gaming (NASDAQ:PENN)
  • Newgioco Group (NASDAQ:NWGI)
  • Churchill Downs (NASDAQ:CHDN)
  • Golden Entertainment (NASDAQ:GDEN)
  • Caesars Entertainment (NASDAQ:CZR)
  • Eldorado Resorts (NASDAQ:ERI)
  • Scientific Games (NASDAQ:SGMS)

Stocks Close Higher Despite Growing Tensions

[Monday, June 1, 4:01 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

As trading wraps up on Monday, it’s unclear what caused stocks to reverse course and head higher. Protests continue across the U.S. and President Donald Trump is still stoking tensions with a call to governors to “dominate” the situation in their individual states.

Perhaps, as Axios’ Dion Rabouin wrote this morning, this stock market rally is just too tough to beat. It sure looks like it, as the S&P 500Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite all closed in the green.

  • The S&P 500 closed higher by 0.38%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed higher by 0.36%
  • The Nasdaq Composite closed higher by 0.66%

Buy Eli Lilly Stock as It Begins Key Coronavirus Drug Trials

[Monday, June 1, 3:47 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Eli Lilly (NYSE:LLY) shares are up slightly Monday on news the company has begun human trials of its antibody drug for the novel coronavirus. Unlike other drugs in trial — including Gilead Sciences’ (NASDAQ:GILD) remdesivir — Eli Lilly’s drug was developed specifically for this virus.

In many ways, these human trials are a “milestone” in the race against the pandemic, according to Stat News’ Matthew Herper. AbCellera developed the drug, and now Eli Lilly will work to test and manufacture it. Chief Science Officer Daniel Skavronsky said that the company could potentially have hundreds of thousands or millions of doses ready by the end of 2020.

For now, this early trial is just to test the safety of LY-CoV555. According to Herper, 32 individuals will receive different doses of the drug.

According to the company’s press release, results from this trial should come at the end of June. From there, Eli Lilly will begin testing the drug in non-hospitalized coronavirus patients. But what’s perhaps a bigger catalyst is the preventive angle of LY-CoV555.

What does this mean? Well, vaccines are often not ideal for certain vulnerable populations, making vaccine candidates potentially unhelpful to a very at-risk group. Eli Lilly hopes that its drug — which targets a broad antibody found in patients — could be preventive and protect these populations. Not only does this give it an edge against drug-making peers, it also represents a big catalyst for the stock if the drug is successful in clinical trials.

Keep a close eye on LLY stock. Big things could be headed its way.

5 Micro-Cap Stocks to Buy for Big Gains Now

[Monday, June 1, 2:50 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

When searching for stocks to profit off of the novel coronavirus, it’s likely big-name companies are some of the top recommendations. Clorox (NYSE:CLX) and Costco (NASDAQ:COST) have a lot of brand power, and shares didn’t disappoint in the earliest weeks of stay-at-home orders and panic buying. Now, though, InvestorPlace’s Thomas Niel is looking to micro-cap stocks for pandemic gains.

There’s a lot of volatility in the market, and it’s not unheard of these days to see a stock gain 300%-plus in a single day of trading. That’s why micro-cap names that are high risk and high reward hold so much potential.

Niel makes one thing very clear. When pursuing these micro-cap opportunities, investors shouldn’t be betting the ranch. Here’s where he’s looking now:

  • Century Casinos (NASDAQ:CNTY)
  • Funko (NASDAQ:FNKO)
  • Hexo (NYSE:HEXO)
  • Mesa Air Group (NASDAQ:MESA)

Gilead Stock Falls Despite New Remdesivir Results

[Monday, June 1, 1:50 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Gilead Sciences (NASDAQ:GILD) seems to have fallen completely out of favor with investors, but the company is still pushing ahead. On Monday, it announced new results about remdesivir, its novel coronavirus treatment that has received emergency-use authorization from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. For some reason, GILD stock is down 3% in intraday trading.

The study showed that patients with “moderate” cases of Covid-19 that received a five-day course of remdesivir were 65% more likely to have their condition improve than those patients receiving standard treatment. Gilead focused on “moderate” cases, using a scale of severity ranging from not hospitalized to requiring extensive care.

According to BioPharma Dive’s Jacob Bell, this is important because it shows which patients are likely to benefit from such a treatment. Bell also cited Piper Sandler analyst Tyler Van Buren, who believes the five-day remdesivir treatment should be used in all hospitalized patients.

So why is remdesivir not sending GILD shares higher today? Perhaps investors are tired of the back-and-forth results. Or, perhaps it’s because, as InvestorPlace’s Larry Ramer wrote today, many are worried about whether or not Gilead will be able to meaningful profit from remdesivir sales.

Ramer isn’t giving up on GILD stock, and he doesn’t think other investors should either. He wrote this morning that many nations continue to expand approval of the drug, and results are still promising. Plus, unlike the naysayers, Ramer believes remdesivir will “move the needle” for Gilead, making it a stock to buy now.

This Week’s IPO Stocks Should Give Bulls Some Hope

[Monday, June 1, 1:17 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

In perhaps the most striking sign that the economy and the stock market are at odds, this week is set to be the biggest IPO week since early February. Unemployment numbers are still climbing and tensions are rising in the U.S. At the same time though, four companies are pushing forward with IPOs as the stock market continues to trend higher.

This morning, Axios’ Dion Rabouin wrote that a “pandemic and protests can’t stop the stock market.” In a separate morning release, Axios’ Dan Primack commented that this week’s planned initial public offerings are a symbol of the market’s “decoupling” from the economy. However, Primack also pointed out that economists are quick to say real-time economic realities are not good market indicators.

So, while many are doubting the legitimacy of this rally, it’s clear that market sentiment has shifted in a big way. A few weeks ago, IPOs were far from almost everyone’s mind. Now, we’ll have four noteworthy public debuts in one week.

What’s on the docket for this week? According to Renaissance Capital, Warner Music Group, which will trade on the Nasdaq Exchange under ticker WMG, will be the largest IPO thus far in 2020. The record label plans to raise $1.7 billion. Shares will be priced between $23 and $26.

This week will also see software-as-a-service provider ZoomInfo debut as ZI, immuno-oncology company Legend Biotech debut as LEGN and biotech Pliant Therapeutics debut as PLRX.

Aytu BioScience Stock Climbs on New Coronavirus Test

[Monday, June 1, 12:28 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Although many Americans are regaining confidence and returning to pre-pandemic routines, testing hasn’t lost importance. For the last several weeks, many have speculated that antibody tests — those that specifically test for antibodies that indicate past infection — could allow big offices and schools to reopen. Why? Scientists believe the presence of these antibodies could mean immunity from the virus.

Clearly, that’s created a lot of demand for these novel coronavirus tests. Riding out the catalyst today is Aytu BioScience (NASDAQ:AYTU). Shares are up over 6% in intraday trading.

According to the company’s early morning press release, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration granted Aytu’s antibody test emergency-use authorization. The company has already ramped up production of its COVID-19 IgG/IgM Rapid Test Cassette, and has 1.4 million test kits now available at its San Diego warehouse.

One warning: Shares trade for less than $2, even after the morning’s rally. With that in mind, be cautious, but keep an open mind. H.C. Wainwright analyst Vernon Bernadino set a price target of $3 today along with a “buy” rating. That’s more than 100% upside from the current price.

7 Fitness Stocks to Buy for Some Post-Pandemic Muscle

[Monday, June 1, 10:50 a.m.]
Contributed by
Sarah Smith

Under stay-at-home orders, Americans purchased comfortable athletic wear and at-home workout equipment. Some were even panic-buying luxury gear while their beloved gyms and fitness studios were closed to stop the spread of the novel coronavirus. But now, states are reopening, and that means these gyms and studios are reopening too.

In some states, gyms were among the first businesses to reopen among growing demand. In others, they will be some of the last. Regardless, the world of fitness will perhaps be permanently changed by the pandemic. After one gym in Atlanta reopened in early May, patrons reported they didn’t feel safe without everyone wearing masks. According to The Wall Street Journal, the compromise was a four-hour period where masks were mandatory.

The Atlantic’s Michael Owen speculated on what this post-pandemic world of fitness will look like. Reduced capacity for group fitness classes. Latex gloves for weightlifting. Pre-booked workout windows. In other words, things will be different.

That’s why InvestorPlace’s Ian Bezek is bullish on a specific group of fitness stocks for the new normal. Instead of rushing to invest in gyms that have yet to fully reopen, he’s looking at athletic wear and at-home fitness companies that are likely to retain many new consumers. Plus, he’s looking at diet-focused brands that will gain popularity as Americans leave quarantine.

Here are the seven stocks he thinks you should buy now:

  • Nike (NYSE:NKE)
  • Peloton (NASDAQ:PTON)
  • Lululemon (NASDAQ:LULU)
  • Under Armour (NYSE:UANYSE:UAA)
  • BellRing Brands (NYSE:BRBR)
  • Hormel Foods (NYSE:HRL)
  • Fitbit (NYSE:FIT)

Stocks Open Lower Monday on U.S. Unrest

[Monday, June 1, 9:31 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Stock futures held up until just before the opening bell, when they dropped further into the red. Protests over the death of George Floyd, who was killed by Minneapolis police last week, dominated much of the news this weekend. Target (NYSE:TGT) has temporarily closed or adjusted hours at more than 200 stores. Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) is changing some delivery routes. Elsewhere in the corporate world, companies are publishing statements of support for Floyd’s family and the Black Lives Matter movement.

Although U.S.-China trade tensions have taken a backseat, matters are still escalating. This morning, Bloomberg reported that the nation has asked its top state-run agricultural companies to halt purchases of U.S. agriculture products including soybeans. Many take this as a sign that the phase-one trade deal remains in jeopardy.

The stock market demonstrated resiliency last week, but it’s unclear what today will bring. The S&P 500Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite all opened in the red Monday.

  • The S&P 500 opened lower by 0.26%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average opened lower by 0.33%
  • The Nasdaq Composite opened lower by 0.24%

Stocks Turn Positive on Trump’s Trade Comments

[Friday, May 29, 4:01 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Bulls didn’t achieve a monumental victory in the stock market today, but they at least pulled off a turnaround. President Donald Trump’s scheduled comments on U.S.-China relations weren’t as bad as expected. He did say the U.S. would move to end special trade treatment toward Hong Kong. However, investors are cheering because he didn’t abandon the existing phase-one trade deal.

Elsewhere in the market, Twitter (NYSE:TWTR) continued its fall, and social media peer Facebook  (NASDAQ:FB) joined it in the red. Who knows what Trump’s latest attack on the platforms will bring next week.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average failed to turn things around, but the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq Composite are headed into the weekend in the green.

  • The S&P 500 closed higher by 0.48%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed lower by 0.07%
  • The Nasdaq Composite closed higher by 1.29%

GlaxoSmithKline Stock Is a Buy on CRISPR Partnership

[Friday, May 29, 2:02 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Many investors have likely heard about the CRISPR gene-editing technique, especially in association with next-generation healthcare or red-hot biotech stocks. As OneZero writer Emily Mullin put it on Wednesday, the novel coronavirus is giving this science a much more realistic end goal — test kits.

Inspired by at-home pregnancy tests — relatively simple to use for the average consumer — a handful of companies, public and private, are working to make a CRISPR-based coronavirus test. Such a test would beat the costs and inconvenience associated with lab testing, and could deliver results in less than hour.

Notable cons include the potential for test misinterpretation.

For investors, one exciting entrant into this space is pharmaceutical giant GlaxoSmithKline (NYSE:GSK). The company is already working on a vaccine candidate for the coronavirus, but through a partnership with Mammoth Biosciences, it’s also working on a 20-minute test kit.

According to FierceBiotech’s Conor Hale, the test would require an at-home nasal swab and would be sold over the counter. The duo’s offering would greatly improve the accessibility of these diagnostic tools, and using the CRISPR gene-editing technique would ensure more reliable results. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration already granted Sherlock Biosciences emergency-use authorization for a similar test. However, Sherlock’s is not designed for at-home use and requires lab equipment.

So-called “designer babies” and next-gen cancer cures may seem far away, but CRISPR’s use in combating the coronavirus is quite tangible. Getting into a partnership like GSK’s and Mammoth’s sounds like a win-win opportunity for investors.

9 Cheap Stocks to Buy for Pandemic Rebound Potential

[Friday, May 29, 1:32 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

There has always been something magical about cheap stocks, and the novel coronavirus makes their appeal even brighter. Why? Even stalwart companies have struggled, which means that solid stocks are now available at discount prices. Plus, some riskier names now come with bigger rebound potential.

That’s why InvestorPlace’s Josh Enomoto recommended nine cheap stocks today. He argues that his list would benefit from both a V-shaped and a prolonged recovery, because regardless of the timeline, his picks are headed up.

So what exactly are his picks? Enomoto is looking to the world of vice, as he thinks pent-up demand will drive a rebound in beer sales and strip club visits. Plus, he’s betting on psychedelic drugs (for medicinal use) and a handful of more recognizable and respectable companies.

Here are the nine cheap stocks he thinks you should buy now:

  • AT&T (NYSE:T)
  • Altria Group (NYSE:MO)
  • RCI Hospitality (NASDAQ:RICK)
  • Molson Coors Beverage (NYSE:TAP)
  • Anheuser-Busch InBev (NYSE:BUD)
  • Yamana Gold (NYSE:AUY)
  • Simon Property Group (NYSE:SPG)
  • Champignon Brands (OTCMKTS:SHRMF)

Sonoma Pharmaceuticals Soars on Disinfectant Approval

[Friday, May 29, 12:09 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Has anyone found any Clorox (NYSE:CLX) disinfectant products yet? It seems like whenever I look, shelves are still empty. In other words, virus-fighting disinfectants are still in high demand, and that bodes well for California-based Sonoma Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:SNOA).

Shares are up more than 150% in intraday trading on news that Sonoma’s Nanocyn disinfectant and sanitizer product received approval from Australia’s Register of Therapeutic Goods. This approval means that Sonoma can now market its disinfectant as a virucidal agent specifically against the novel coronavirus. Hello, Clorox-esque rally!

Sonoma works with MicroSafe Group, a Dubai-based biomedical company, to produce its Nanocyn product. This means that in Australia, the product will be sold under the Nanocyn brand. In Europe and the Middle East, it will be sold as a MicroSafe product.

MicroSafe CEO Safa Qadumi said that this disinfectant is important for more than one reason. It has a 30-second kill time for viruses, and it’s not toxic. That combination is “landmark” according to Qadumi.

It’s also landmark for Sonoma Pharmaceuticals stock, which could continue to benefit from a spike in sales. Now that it’s able to market its product specifically with Covid-19 in mind, look for consumers to stock up on Nanocyn soon.

Buy Shopify Stock for Its New Pandemic-Driven Solutions

[Friday, May 29, 11:18 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Some, like InvestorPlace’s Joel Baglole, think Shopify (NYSE:SHOP) is running out of growth potential. To be fair, shares are up almost 90% year-to-date and trade at an astronomical forward price-earnings ratio. But investors shouldn’t knock SHOP stock here. In fact, its new e-commerce solutions shows Shopify knows exactly what to do moving forward.

To start, Shopify is a partner in Facebook’s (NASDAQ:FB) much-hyped Facebook Shops rollout. As Baglole writes, it’s not the only e-commerce partner that Facebook has tapped. But Shopify will still get access to Facebook’s 2.6 billion monthly active users as businesses begin selling products directly through social media platforms.

Shopify is also recognizing the needs of small and medium-sized business owners, especially as the novel coronavirus continues to decimate and shift the retail landscape. Its new Shopify Balance will help shop owners track their expenses and make payments. Cards associated with the plan will earn rewards on business expenses. Plus, a new local delivery program will allow merchants to define “local” areas and set special delivery rates within those areas. This will certainly help small businesses get creative.

But perhaps the most exciting new offering is Shopify Pay Installments. Similar to offerings from Klarna and Afterpay (OTCMKTS:AFTPY) — a company we previously praised in this blog — Shopify Pay Installments embraces “buy now, pay later.” This service was gaining serious popularity with retailers and shoppers before the pandemic, but as Retail Dive’s Tatiana Walk-Morris wrote, it’s even more of a logical move now.

Buy now, pay later solutions make even high-priced purchases seem a bit more reasonable. Plus, as consumers continue to struggle financially, every dollar saved in the short term really does matter. Shopify has tapped into a key market, and giving its customers Pay Installments should seriously pay off. With that in mind, make sure to give SHOP stock a chance as it gains further e-commerce dominance.

7 Vaccine Stocks to Buy as the Research Race Heats Up

[Friday, May 29, 10:49 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

The 1950s and 1960s had the Space Race. In 2020, investors now have the “coronavirus vaccine race” as companies big and small work to develop, manufacture and market a potential cure for the novel coronavirus. To date, there are over 100 candidates in various stages of development and clinical trial.

Each company in the running has big potential. A vaccine will bring a safer reopening, a return to the “normal” so many Americans miss. Plus, it would represent just how far technology has come as researchers work to develop the vaccine in record time. President Donald Trump is even calling a U.S. initiative Operation Warp Speed, demonstrating his intentions to quickly vaccinate the U.S. population.

In a field with more than 100 candidates, how do you start betting on the winner? InvestorPlace Markets Analyst Luke Lango is rallying behind what he sees as the top seven vaccine stocks. These companies will benefit from their ability to scale production quickly.

Here’s a look at the seven stocks he’s recommending now:

  • Moderna (NASDAQ:MRNA)
  • Inovio (NASDAQ:INO)
  • Dynavax (NASDAQ:DVAX)
  • Novavax (NASDAQ:NVAX)
  • Sorrento (NASDAQ:SRNE)
  • Arcturus (NASDAQ:ARCT)

Stocks Open Lower Friday on Rising U.S.-China Tensions

[Friday, May 29, 9:31 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

It’s almost the weekend, but investors are getting a rough start in the stock market today. Tech stocks are still struggling, and things aren’t necessarily looking up.

President Donald Trump plans on holding a press conference later in the day to discuss how his administration wants to move forward with China. His administration is pushing back on Beijing’s relationship with Hong Kong, but threats of sanctions, tariffs and limited visas could spell disaster for Silicon Valley.

Plus, Trump is once again taking aim at social media companies after Twitter (NYSE:TWTR) applied new fact-checking and censorship protocols to a handful of the president’s tweets. TWTR shares opened down after tumbling 4.5% on Thursday.

Will weekend enthusiasts be able to pull of a rally by the end of the day? It seems unlikely now, but you never know what is possible. In the meantime, the S&P 500Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite are all in the red.

  • The S&P 500 opened lower by 0.21%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average opened lower by 0.52%
  • The Nasdaq Composite opened lower by 0.46%

These 6 Companies Will Be Winners After the Pandemic

[Thursday, May 28, 4:34 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

It should be abundantly clear that the novel coronavirus has changed “normal” life, and that some of these changes will be permanent in nature. Don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying we are moving to a future devoid of human contact and in-person work. Instead, I’m recognizing that the pandemic is accelerating certain megatrends, and making many consumers familiar with new trends like e-commerce.

That’s why InvestorPlace’s Chris Markoch today recommended six companies that stand to be winners for the next decade. He wrote that these companies have stood out since the market-wide selloff in March, and their underlying trends will continue to accelerate in the future.

His list covers big trends. E-commerce. Telemedicine. Contactless payments. Fintech. We’ve seen how restaurants quickly abandoned cash for in-app payment experiences. Doctors closed non-essential offices in favor of telehealth offerings. Brick-and-mortar retailers have lost out to e-commerce sites. Those trends won’t reverse, they’ll simply accelerate.

To invest for the next decade, here are Markoch’s six recommendations:

  • PayPal (NASDAQ:PYPL)
  • Square (NYSE:SQ)
  • Shopify (NYSE:SHOP)
  • Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN)
  • Verizon (NYSE:VZ)
  • Teladoc Health (NYSE:TDOC)

6 European Stocks to Buy for an EU Bailout Plan

[Thursday, May 28, 4:12 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

In an effort to bail out more tourism-dependent countries, the European Union just unveiled a $2 trillion stimulus proposal. The plan combines over $800 billion in recovery funds with a $1.2 trillion budget for the next seven years. European stocks rose on the news, but some EU member nations are already pushing against it.

Germany and France, among the EU’s wealthiest nations, have been better able to inject cash into struggling companies. As we’ve previously reported in this blog, Greece, which gets much of its revenue from tourism, faces major economic pain and lacks necessary resources to address it.

As with any big-ticket bill, the proposed stimulus is controversial. To start, it would include the issuance of common eurozone debt. Repayments would begin in 2028, and according to The Wall Street Journal, would be funded through bloc-wide taxes and member-state contributions.

The potential “bad guys” in this news have been dubbed the Frugal Four — Sweden, the Netherlands, Denmark and Austria. According to the team at Morning Brew, these northern states are “spooked” at the thought of taking on so much debt on behalf of struggling economies. Investors should prepare for weeks of debate and changes to the proposal, as all 27 nations must agree.

All the debate isn’t preventing a rally in European stocks. Just like how the CARES Act brought hope for the hardest-hit industries, companies in Europe are feeling relief this week. Car maker Renault (OTCMKTS:RNSLY) is up 30% in the last five trading days. Airlines Ryanair (OTCMKTS:RYAAY) and Lufthansa (OTCMKTS:DLAKY) are up 11% and 19%, respectively.

Just like in the United States, banks have been some of the losers. That means on a bailout-driven rally, they’re likely to be some of the winners. Banco Santander (NYSE:SAN) is up 9% in the last five trading days. Societe Generale (OTCMKTS:SCGLY) and BNP Paribas (OTCMKTS:BNPQY) are up 13% and 20%, respectively.

These six stocks are just a start, but they represent investment opportunities on the lessons learned in the U.S. Keep an eye on players in other hard-hit industries, and make sure to tune into the inevitable EU drama over the next few weeks.

Stocks Cut Gains Thursday as U.S. Death Toll Rises

[Thursday, May 28, 4:01 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Today’s rally was just too good to be true. Stocks reversed course, heading into the red, although the S&P 500 remains above the key 3,000 level. So, what happened in the stock market today?

Investors cheered on good news from Novartis (NYSE:NVS) and Arca Biopharma (NASDAQ:ABIO) about novel coronavirus treatments. However, an update that the death toll in the United States has now surpassed 100,000 is disheartening. Plus, investors learned this morning that 2.1 million more Americans filed for unemployment benefits. Every step forward is met with two steps back these days.

Unfortunately, the S&P 500, Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite just couldn’t hold onto their early morning gains. Who knows what tomorrow will bring.

  • The S&P 500 closed lower by 0.21%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed lower by 0.58%
  • The Nasdaq Composite closed lower by 0.46%

Is Amazon Stock a Buy on Pending Zoox Deal?

[Thursday, May 28, 3:13 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) is, without a doubt, one of the biggest winners amid the novel coronavirus. The company continues to benefit from its e-commerce dominance, its Whole Foods grocery chain and its streaming entertainment library. New moves into the video game world are also drawing praise from investors. And, as The Wall Street Journal reported this week, Amazon is also making another move into the world of self-driving vehicles.

Cara Lombardo and Tim Higgins wrote on Tuesday that Amazon was allegedly in talks to acquire Zoox, a company working on the hardware and software for robot taxis. The duo wrote that after struggling to attract necessary financing, the startup has been struggling. A sale to Amazon could prolong its ideas, and potentially give Amazon an edge in the next-generation car world.

Although the deal has not been confirmed, many predict Amazon would pay no more than $3.2 billion for Zoox. Barron’s Eric Savitz likes the rumors, noting that Amazon could become a leader in the ride-hailing market, knocking out Uber (NYSE:UBER) and Lyft (NASDAQ:LYFT). Sure, those two companies have had a bit of a duopoly, but they aren’t holding up well in the face of a pandemic.

This isn’t Amazon’s first foray into the vehicle realm. It has previously invested in electric truck maker Rivian and Aurora Innovations, a company behind other self-driving tech. With this in mind, some see Amazon’s interest in Zoox as an even more cunning move.

Axios’ Joann Muller wrote yesterday that if anything, Amazon is seeking to improve its logistics offerings as e-commerce demand skyrockets. It is already working with Rivian and Aurora to produce 100,000 electric delivery trucks, and as Muller wrote, it could tap Zoox’s hardware and software to add self-driving or other high-tech features to this plan.

Competition in e-commerce is heating up and Amazon clearly wants to maintain its dominance. It’s not at risk yet, but continuing innovation is key. A purchase of Zoox could one day translate to even more profits for Amazon shareholders.

4 Stocks to Buy for Prolonged Social Distancing

[Thursday, May 28, 3:00 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Pictures of Brooklyn’s Domino Park — where sunbathers relax in chalk circles spaced six feet apart — may seem like a city art experiment. Instead, it’s a sign of the times, as Americans yearn for time in the summer sun while still maintaining expert-recommended social distancing protocols. It’s also a sign of how states are struggling to strike a balance between reopening their economies and protecting concerned consumers.

This push for balance is what inspired InvestorPlace’s Laura Hoy to make four stock recommendations today. Drawing on advice from University of Texas at Austin’s Brad Gold, she argues that the best stocks to buy are ones that will benefit both from reopening and social distancing.

It sounds like a tough ask, but her recommendations deliver just that. The stocks on her list combine work-from-home trends, reopening restaurants and staple American businesses.

Without further ado, here are Hoy’s four recommendations:

  • Dropbox (NASDAQ:DBX)
  • 3M (NYSE:MMM)
  • Starbucks (NASDAQ:SBUX)
  • Raytheon Technologies (NYSE:RTX)

Arca Biopharma Stock Is a Unique Coronavirus Play

[Thursday, May 28, 2:41 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

There’s no sense burying the big news. Arca Biopharma (NASDAQ:ABIO) stock is up 340% in intraday trading. Yep, you read that right. Shares opened yesterday below $4 and now trade above $15. This is truly spectacular price action — but there’s good reason for the leap.

Many biotech and pharmaceutical companies have chosen to fight the novel coronavirus through test kits, vaccines and antiviral drugs. We have Gilead’s (NASDAQ:GILD) remdesivir and Abbott Laboratories’ (NYSE:ABT) test kits and over 100 vaccines in the race. But Arca Biopharma is offering something new to the market with its symptom-focused treatment.

To start, Covid-19 typically presents as an infection in the upper portion of the respiratory tract. But, as investors have surely seen in the news, the outbreak comes with a whole host of symptoms. Children are getting blisters on their feet, pregnant women are reporting unique side effects and other patients are seeing far-reaching impacts on various organs. One complaint is a coagulopathy — an inability to form blood clots — specific to Covid-19. It’s not entirely clear what the association is, or why it’s happening in so many patients. But, researchers do know that the presence of this coagulopathy is linked to increase risk of death in Covid-19 patients.

That’s where Arca Biopharma comes in. The company announced that it is developing its AB201 as a treatment for this coagulopathy. One good thing is that the treatment has already been studied for safety and efficacy for other conditions, including Ebola, so it may be able to go through a more rapid process. In its Thursday press release, the company says it hopes to move to Phase 2b and Phase 3 trials by the second half of the year.

Keep a close eye on ABIO stock. One of the most attention-grabbing details of this virus is the various ways in which it impacts human life. As companies like Arca Biopharma work to treat unpredictable symptoms, there’s certainly profits to be made.

Novartis Stock Climbs After Jumping Into the Vaccine Race

[Thursday, May 28, 2:13 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Novartis (NYSE:NVS) may have divested its vaccine business to GlaxoSmithKline (NYSE:GSK) in 2015, but that doesn’t mean the pharmaceutical giant is prepared to sit this fight out. In fact, it dove into the race to develop a novel coronavirus vaccine on Thursday through a partnership with Massachusetts General Hospital and Massachusetts Eye and Ear.

So how exactly does this partnership work? Novartis is contributing through its AveXis gene therapy unit. This unit is already familiar with a specific type of gene therapy delivery tool, known as adeno-associated virus (ADV). The Massachusetts hospital group has already begun developing and researching a vaccine that used this same tool. Its AAVCOVID is in preclinical trials, and could move to Phase 1 human trials by the second half of 2020.

Apparently investors still have an appetite for new vaccine stocks. Despite the fact that there are more than 100 other candidates, 30 of which use this same type of vaccine technology, NVS shares are up almost 3% Thursday in intraday trading.

Why? BioPharma Dive’s Jonathan Gardner wrote today that one particular area of interest is the hospital’s early move to partner with Novartis’ AveXis. The gene therapy unit will be particularly helpful in commercial manufacturing and distribution, which shows that there’s a high level of confidence about the vaccine. In a time where a vaccine is in sky-high demand, such a bold move is likely exactly what investors are looking for.

As we’ve previously reported in this blog, big rewards will come to the vaccine winner. Novartis has a big reputation and a lot of power behind its name. As the race heats up, it’s certainly a contender to watch.

10 Coronavirus Stocks to Buy to Invest Like Jim Cramer

[Thursday, May 28, 1:30 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

CNBC’s Jim Cramer has been working since late April on his “Cramer Covid-19 Index.” Just as the name suggests, the TV analyst has been perfecting a portfolio of stocks that are set to outperform the broader market. There are 100 stocks in this index, and Cramer picked each one for an economy he describes as “reeling” amid the novel coronavirus pandemic.

Now that March’s selloff is mostly in the rear-view mirror and economic reports are trending higher, some are calling for a V-shaped — or quick — recovery. But Cramer thinks it’s too soon to give up on what he’s calling “recession stocks.” That’s why, as MarketWatch’s Shawn Langlois wrote yesterday, the analyst is making some changes to the portfolio.

He sold stocks like Digital Realty (NYSE:DLR), Freshpet (NASDAQ:FRPT) and Inovio Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:INO). These stocks have been hot, but Cramer is looking for even more defensive names.

If you want to invest like Cramer, here are 10 stocks he just added to his Covid-19 index:

  • DataDog (NASDAQ:DDOG)
  • Splunk (NASDAQ:SPLK)
  • Twilio (NYSE:TWLO)
  • Etsy (NASDAQ:ETSY)
  • Chegg (NYSE:CHGG)
  • Target (NYSE:TGT)
  • S&P Global (NYSE:SPGI)
  • Palo Alto Networks (NYSE:PANW)
  • Emergent (NYSE:EBS)

7 Gun Stocks to Buy to Protect Yourself From the Virus

[Thursday, May 28, 11:07 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

As InvestorPlace’s Josh Enomoto wrote this morning, the novel coronavirus is creating a wave of fear and scapegoating. In turn, this has caused firearm sales to go through the roof. Sure, Enomoto acknowledges that he’s a bit of a cynic, but he’s likely not wrong. More consumers buying guns means more revenue for the gun manufacturers and retailers. That’s some easy math.

No, this isn’t like gun-toting southerners threatening to shoot into hurricanes to drive them off. In fact, as Enomoto writes, nothing about this investing opportunity is particularly warm and fuzzy in nature. Many Asian Americans have become victims of pandemic-related racial violence, as some falsely believe individuals are to blame for the outbreak.

In response, many Asian Americans are buying firearms. To Enomoto, that represents a growing customer base and a growing investing thesis. If you want to follow his lead, here are seven gun stocks he’s recommending investors buy now:

  • American Outdoor Brands (NASDAQ:AOBC)
  • Sturm Ruger (NYSE:RGR)
  • Vista Outdoor (NYSE:VSTO)
  • Olin Corporation (NYSE:OLN)
  • Sportsman’s Warehouse (NASDAQ:SPWH)
  • Axon Enterprise (NASDAQ:AAXN)
  • Big 5 Sporting Goods (NASDAQ:BGFV)

Pizza Stocks Offer Cheesy Returns Amid the Pandemic

[Thursday, May 28, 10:35 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

As consumers have abandoned healthy eating in favor of comfort foods, pizza has become a serious winner. I mean, who doesn’t love pizza? That thinking is why Longbow analyst Alton Stump set new “buy” ratings on Domino’s Pizza (NYSE:DPZ) and Papa John’s (NASDAQ:PZZA) today.

Domino’s reported first-quarter figures on April 23, but since then, it’s seen a “material” spike in business. As Barron’s Teresa Rivas wrote yesterday, comparable-store sales were up 20.9% in May compared to a 7.1% increase in April. No wonder Stump is so bullish on pizza stocks. Based on Domino’s recent report, Stump is confident that DPZ stock will continue to benefit from the novel coronavirus.

DPZ stock trades hands near $370, and Stump raised his 12-month price target to $441.

Papa John’s is a smaller operator, and Rivas says many investors are worried about its longer-term potential. Whereas Domino’s is likely to push through even as states reopen and dine-in restaurant options return, Papa John’s might lose its spark. That’s not stopping Stump, though. PZZA stock currently trades at $77, and the Longbow analyst things it could hit $95 in a year.

Pizza is warm, cheesy goodness nicely packed up in a cardboard box. Woes related to the coronavirus will persist for a long time, and pizza will be there to comfort consumers. If I were you, I wouldn’t bet against pizza stocks.

Stocks Open Higher Thursday Despite Jobless Report

[Thursday, May 28, 9:31 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

This week’s rally is looking pretty tough. Investors learned that 2.1 million more Americans filed for unemployment benefits last week, bringing the total to over 40 million. But the mass selling hasn’t started yet. Sure, 2.1 million is a lot better than 6.9 million. Is this “victory” cause for more stock market gains on Thursday?

The S&P 500 and Dow Jones Industrial Average opened higher on Thursday, but the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite wasn’t so lucky. Earnings from HP (NYSE:HPQ) missed estimates, and investors are wary as U.S.-China trade tensions rise once again.

  • The S&P 500 opened higher by 0.35%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average opened higher by 0.74%
  • The Nasdaq Composite opened lower by 0.15%

Stocks Close Higher Wednesday Despite Trade Troubles

[Wednesday, May 27, 4:01 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Nothing could stop Wednesday’s rally, not even renewed trade tensions between the U.S. and China. Today, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said that Hong Kong was “no longer autonomous” from China, raising concerns about its special trade status and broader U.S.-China relations. A handful of tech companies stumbled on the news.

However, Pompeo’s comments didn’t turn stocks negative. The S&P 500Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite all closed well in the green Wednesday. Now it’s just time to wait and see if the SpaceX launch goes as planned.

  • The S&P 500 closed higher by 1.48%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed higher by 2.21%
  • The Nasdaq Composite closed higher by 0.77%

Goldman Sachs: Look for Companies With ‘Sticky’ Sales

[Wednesday, May 27, 3:49 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Since early March, investors have largely been interested in so-called coronavirus stocks. Grocery stores, makers of comfort foods and take-out focused restaurants were among the winners. Now, as states move forward with reopening plans, Goldman Sachs is highlighting that not all of these winners will remain relevant. So, what stocks are worth holding onto — or buying — now?

In a new note to clients, the firm examined the household penetration of several key consumer products. Based on this research, analysts concluded that most of these demand spikes will be temporary. However, two winners will be hard seltzer and sanitizer (subscription required). What a combo.

Why seltzer and sanitizer? Goldman thinks these products have a certain stickiness to them. Consumers who started buying them will likely continue, as they’ve become part of everyday life. With that in mind, Boston Beer Company (NYSE:SAM) and Procter & Gamble (NYSE:PG) are likely long-term winners according to the analysts.

That makes sense. InvestorPlace analyst Matt McCall is a fan of SAM stock, writing in mid-May that even a pandemic can’t bring it down. Boston Beer’s Truly seltzer has become a consumer favorite, and the company is also embracing innovation. It’s turning expired beer into hand sanitizer.

And InvestorPlace analyst Neil George is a big fan of PG stock. He wrote that it’s one of the best long-term stocks for investors to buy and hold. After shares stalled out, he’s pleased to see the company focusing more on shareholders. Plus, a dividend yield of 2.8% is juicy compared to the S&P 500.

2 Stocks to Buy to Profit From the $32 Billion Resale Market

[Wednesday, May 27, 3:22 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Retailers are struggling, but many experts believe the online resale market is booming. Robb Report’s  Jemima Sissons wrote last week that consumers are “detoxing” luxury wardrobes, posting them on online resale platforms. Others are looking for the right luxury accessories (think designer silk scarves) for pandemic living.

For individual consumers, this trend represents a great way to make a little bit of money back, or to swap out one luxury item for another. Vestiaire Collective reported a 44% increase of new listings in the last month as work-from-home lounge items and sub-$500 goods drew interest. But there’s also a way for investors to benefit from the online resale market — which some say is worth $32 billion.

The first entry point is The RealReal (NASDAQ:REAL). A recent IPO stock, The RealReal is the first publicly traded online resale platform. Its luxury focus has similarly brought it success amid the viral outbreak. In mid-May, it hosted a designer mask sale to support frontline workers.

The RealReal hasn’t been immune from the novel coronavirus, but it’s up almost 40% in the last month. Wealthy customers will soon regain confidence, and that will translate to big rewards for the company.

New reporting from Business Insider’s Hayley Peterson highlights a second investment opportunity in this resale market. Walmart (NYSE:WMT) just announced a partnership with ThredUp. Today, Walmart began selling used clothing, footwear and handbags on the resale platform. Walmart customers get free shipping on $35-plus orders and free returns — two perks not previously available on ThredUp.

Whether you opt for familiar Walmart or newcomer The Real Real, the investing opportunity is solid, and the pandemic is only accelerating things.

Freshpet and Chewy Are Unique E-Commerce Plays Now

[Wednesday, May 27, 2:42 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

No matter how smart Fido and Mr. Mittens are, they can’t fully grasp the consequences of the novel coronavirus. For many pets, the pandemic simply means beloved owners are now stuck at home. These pets also represent one constant as Americans face a series of changes: Dogs and cats still need to eat.

Humans grasp that grocery stores aren’t exactly the safest places right now. Pets don’t care about Instacart and strategic shopping trips. They’re simply hungry for food and treats. As consumers balance their care-giving duties with personal health, Freshpet (NASDAQ:FRPT) and Chewy (NYSE:CHWY) have become hot stocks.

In fact, Supermarket News reported that 83% of consumers surveyed now will buy pet products online, although they previously would have opted for the in-store experience. That bodes really well for Freshpet and Chewy stock.

Freshpet bills itself as the future of pet food. Ingredients include locally sourced chicken, cranberries and spinach. Shoppers can get it delivered through Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN), Instacart and Target’s (NYSE:TGT) Shipt. According to CNBC, Freshpet even caught Jim Cramer’s attention as a great way way to beat the S&P 500 in 2020.

The story with Chewy is similar. Instead of trekking to the grocery store or pet store, shoppers can get food, treats, toys and clothing for the pets delivered right to their door in a signature blue box. Talk about brand recognition. InvestorPlace’s Josh Enomoto is bullish on Chewy, especially for younger investors. He wrote earlier in May that while Chewy’s operations aren’t always ideal (it struggled initially to meet the spike in demand), investors who get in now will certainly reap rewards.

As Freshpet and Chewy continue to rack up analyst praise (subscription required), there’s no denying that they represent the future of pet food. Trust me, your furry friends will appreciate these investments.

Is It Time to Buy AT&T Stock as HBO Max Launches?

[Wednesday, May 27, 1:49 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Today marked the long-awaited launch of AT&T’s (NYSE:T) HBO Max streaming service. For a $14.99 a month customers get access to 10,000 hours of existing TV shows and movies. Top titles include FriendsRick and Morty and the DC films like Wonder Woman. Is this the catalyst AT&T stock has been waiting for?

To be fair, the launch has its critics. HBO Max’s price tag comes slightly higher than other offerings from Disney (NYSE:DIS) and Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX). But AT&T has certainly stocked the service with an impressive content library. As TechCrunch’s Anthony Ha writes, another downside is the lack of original content on the platform. A reboot of Friends should debut later on, but there’s nothing like the The Mandalorian to immediately excite fans.

But HBO Max should also benefit from all the new eyeballs the streaming world has attracted. Many states are rushing to reopen, but plenty of consumers will opt to stay at home. Plus, many businesses won’t get the green light to reopen for weeks or months to come.

InvestorPlace Markets Analyst Luke Lango doesn’t think it’s a tough question. He’s confident that HBO Max will be a “mega growth catalyst” for AT&T. He wrote last week that its “treasure chest” of content will rival that of Disney+ and help AT&T weather the economic crisis.

Disney+ certainly found success amid the pandemic, as has music streaming platform Spotify (NYSE:SPOT). It’s too early to tell if HBO Max will attract the necessary customers, but the future looks bright. Buy AT&T stock now to ride out this mega growth catalyst, and binge-watch Friends while you wait for the big gains to come.

5 Stocks to Buy for a Slightly Less Global World

[Wednesday, May 27, 1:19 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

The novel coronavirus created the perfect geopolitical storm. President Donald Trump, and several other world leaders, have blamed China for allowing the outbreak to infect the rest of the world. Tensions between the U.S. and China are back on the rise after a phase-one trade deal fell by the wayside. International travel has broadly come to a standstill, and many borders are closed.

Experts don’t think this trend will entirely reverse. In a new note to clients, Bank of America’s Kathryn McDonald and Joseph Quinlan wrote that the pandemic won’t create new trends, but accelerate trends that were already in motion, like what they term “de-globalization.”

In the note, the duo writes that this “de-globalization” trend means the U.S. will move its key manufacturing back within its borders. Next-generation technology will come from domestic factories, not from China. McDonald and Quinlan emphasize that a combination of re-shoring and localization was already gaining traction. The pandemic is just making it more attractive.

So how can investors profit in this return back to America? InvestorPlace’s Josh Enomoto predicted that pockets of geopolitical instability, some fueled by U.S.-China tensions, would rattle the lithium market. With that in mind, he recommended Sociedad Quimica y Minera (NYSE:SQM), Orocobre (OTCMKTS:OROCF), Power Metals (OTCMKTS:PWRMF) and Galaxy Resources (OTCMKTS:GALXF). According to Enomoto, these companies don’t source their lithium from China, which makes them much safer investments for 2020 and beyond.

Axios’ Miriam Kramer and Alison Snyder wrote that the space industry is another critical one to watch. For the last decade, U.S. astronauts have relied on Russia to get to space. Today’s SpaceX launch changes that. They question — will this bring about a new era of cooperation, or “Great Power” competition? Without the U.S. as a customer, Russia could turn to China for business.

Although SpaceX is a private company, Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA) is a unique beneficiary of this de-globalization. According to Barron’s Al Root, each SpaceX success turns into a branding opportunity for Tesla, and potential gains for TSLA stock.

There are countless other opportunities for this de-globalization trend. Look for industries most likely to return to the U.S. (Bank of America names robotics, critical pharmaceutical goods and automation).

StoneCo Stock Surges on Recent Fintech Success

[Wednesday, May 27, 12:46 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

There are many reasons to like fintech stocks right now. For many investors, these newer, tech-focused players are free from traditional financial stocks’ bad reputation. Plus, these companies represent the future of payment, often providing cashless solutions perfect for novel coronavirus concerns.

But most conversations about cashless payments — or about fintech in general — stop after mentions of Square (NYSE:SQ) and PayPal (PYPL). Today, Brazil-based StoneCo (NASDAQ:STNE) is looking to spend some quality time in the spotlight. Shares are up more than 27% in intraday trading.

To be fair, StoneCo already made waves in 2018 when Berkshire Hathaway’s (NYSE:BRK.A, NYSE:BRK.B) Warren Buffett purchased a sizable stake. But what attracted Buffett back then, and why does it matter now?

StoneCo’s founders sought to take advantage of the growing trend toward cashless payments in Brazil. Its solutions help merchants with in-store, mobile and online payments. And emerging markets like Brazil are both hard-hit by the pandemic and also racing to adopt electronic payments.

Buffett saw the potential back then, and many investors have since followed in his footsteps. STNE stock struggled amid the outbreak, but has since climbed off its lows. Shares are now down just 15% for the year after touching a 55% loss in April.

On Tuesday afternoon, the company reported earnings that unfortunately missed estimates. Total revenue of $134 million was up 33% year-over-year, but EPS of 11 cents fell 1 cent from 2019. Behind Wednesday’s rally is a year-over-year total payment volume increase of 42.1%.

Investors, like InvestorPlace’s Chris Lau, have long been pounding the table on STNE stock. The pandemic shook the market’s confidence in StoneCo’s potential, but this increase in total payment volume seems to indicate that there’s a rebound in payments coming in Brazil.

As more consumers start spending money, more of those consumers will end up using one of StoneCo’s solutions. You don’t want to miss out.

Target Stock May Be the Perfect Pandemic Buy

[Wednesday, May 27, 11:27 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

With a market capitalization of $57 billion, Target (NYSE:TGT) is just a fraction of the size of Walmart (NYSE:WMT). But the smaller retailer has developed an intensely brand-loyal following. And thanks to the novel coronavirus, it looks like it’s about to hit the “target” with shareholders.

Target is doing a lot of things right. It combines fashionable apparel with convenient snack items, affordable-but-trendy home goods with healthcare products. Online sales grew by 141% in the first quarter as consumers flocked to its website for a mix of essential and non-essential purchases.

In the grocery world, Target’s Shipt business is also paying off. Since March, the same-day grocery delivery service has seen its customers double. But according to Supply Chain Dive’s Jeff Wells, there’s another exciting grocery catalyst rolling out. Before the pandemic, Target was testing adding fresh groceries and alcohol to its curbside Drive Up program. After temporarily halting the pilot to focus on keeping employees safe, the program is back.

Sure, COO John Mulligan isn’t sure when the pilot will expand, but he’s optimistic that sooner, rather than later, customers will be ordering milk along with their school supplies and bathing suits for curbside pickup. As the pandemic continues to accelerate curbside offerings, look for Target to become even more of a one-stop shop for consumers.

Target is also heating things up elsewhere in the retail world. On May 21 it announced shoppers would be able to purchase products directly through its Instagram page. After initially entering your shipping and payment information, it will be a two-click process. As Retail Dive’s Tatiana Walk-Morris wrote, this is a great move for Target as in-app purchases gain traction. From the comfort of your couch or bed you can “shop” an image and order what you see.

No wonder InvestorPlace Markets Analyst Luke Lango loves TGT stock so much. With a 2.2% dividend yield and seemingly never-ending retail innovations, it’s the perfect buy to “beat” the pandemic.

7 Cheap Stocks to Buy for Pandemic-Free Power

[Wednesday, May 27, 10:39 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

We’ve fallen into quite the rhythm with the market. We get bad news — say, we find out there’s been a spike in novel coronavirus cases. As a result, stocks broadly drop. Then, we get good news — say, a vaccine company has entered a new trial or produced desirable results. Stocks shoot up en masse.

Sure, there are exceptions to this madness. Some companies completely avoided the market-wide selloff in March. Video conferencing plays and providers of personal protective equipment have made a fortune. But what are investors to do with the rest of the madness?

According to InvestorPlace analyst Louis Navellier, this conundrum is why cheap stocks are appealing. Small-cap companies, often without a ton of guaranteed revenue, move more on their own potential than with the broader market. In other words, their operations matter just as much — if not more — than their quarterly reports.

Boy, doesn’t that sound nice? Navellier’s recommendation is part of a big market promise. Buy a few shares for $3 or $4 each and then rake in massive returns, months or years down the line.

If you’re intrigued, here are his seven recommendations now:

  • Kadmon Holdings (NYSE:KDMN)
  • ImmunoGen (NASDAQ:IMGN)
  • Silvercorp Metals (NYSEMKT:SVM)
  • Plug Power (NASDAQ:PLUG)
  • Iamgold (NYSE:IAG)
  • United Microelectronics (NYSE:UMC)
  • Infinera (NASDAQ:INFN)

Stocks Open Higher Wednesday as Reopening Continues

[Wednesday, May 27, 9:31 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

It seems like nothing can shake the rally this week. Stocks opened higher again on Wednesday despite President Donald Trump’s stirring of U.S.-China trade tensions. Perhaps helping keep the markets nice and green is a European bailout package and yesterday’s victory in travel stocks.

What will the rest of Wednesday bring? As Trump circles in on China, will we see a repeat of recent market panic? Or, will it be smooth sailing once again?

For now, the bulls are winning. The S&P 500Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite are all snug in the green.

  • The S&P 500 opened higher by 0.93%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average opened higher by 1.41%
  • The Nasdaq Composite opened lower by 0.17%

25 Stocks to Buy for a Major Wave of Reopening

[Tuesday, May 26, 4:25 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

One thing we’ve covered in this blog is the power of reopening. Many consumers are itching to return to hair salons, retailers and restaurants after months of staying inside. InvestorPlace Markets Analyst Luke Lango has long been bullish on this “pent-up demand” catalyst.

A quick glance at social media this weekend should have confirmed this catalyst is real. Americans flocked to the beaches, many without face masks, and visited friends and family. Public health experts are quick to warn against this behavior, but it means money is flowing a little bit more freely.

Lango is confident that this pent-up demand is strong, and that it’s going to make another group of stocks victorious in 2020. He calls this the shift from “staying at home” to “getting out of the house.” With this in mind, he recommended 25 stocks to buy for this trend today.

Here’s a look at the first 10 names on his list:

  • McDonald’s (NYSE:MCD)
  • Starbucks (NASDAQ:SBUX)
  • Dine Brands (NYSE:DIN)
  • Darden (NYSE:DRI)
  • Dave & Buster’s (NASDAQ:PLAY)
  • Six Flags (NYSE:SIX)
  • SeaWorld (NYSE:SEAS)
  • Cedar Fair (NYSE:FUN)
  • Disney (NYSE:DIS)
  • Planet Fitness (NYSE:PLNT)

Stocks Close Higher Tuesday on Hints of ‘Normal’

[Tuesday, May 26, 4:01 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Dare I ask, is this the return to normal investors have been waiting for? The S&P 500 played the flirt, crossing the 3,000 level for the first time since March 5. Traders returned to the floor of the New York Stock Exchange after weeks of working from home. Plus, vaccine news kept stocks steady and offered hope to even the most beaten-down of sectors.

It was a good day in the stock market, to say the least. Novavax (NASDAQ:NVAX) and Merck (NYSE:MRK) made waves with their vaccine news, and travel stocks got a bit of a boost. Delta Air Lines (NYSE:DAL), American Airlines (NASDAQ:AAL) and United Airlines (NASDAQ:UAL) all closed higher by more than 10%.

As investors cling to this optimism, the S&P 500, Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite all closed in the green Tuesday.

  • The S&P 500 closed higher by 1.23%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed higher by 2.17%
  • The Nasdaq Composite closed higher by 0.17%

There’s Still Bullish Magic Behind Disney Stock

[Tuesday, May 26, 3:01 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Disney (NYSE:DIS) is a company with perhaps unrivaled brand loyalty. Consumers drop serious money to attend its  theme parks, and spend weeks obsessing over new releases from its Star Wars and Marvel franchises. Unfortunately, even Disney hasn’t been immune from the novel coronavirus.

That less-than-magical reality is why InvestorPlace analyst Matt McCall has been siding with the skeptics on DIS stock. Until theme parks, movie theaters and resort properties reopen at full capacity, it will be missing out on much-needed revenue. However, McCall sees a bull case for shares near $90.

Sure, that implies a steep drop from its current share price. But hear me out. McCall’s argument makes a lot of sense, especially as he recognizes the value in different catalysts for Disney. For example, he sees “problem child” ESPN becoming a winner in the new normal. Why? Who knows when live audiences will return to sporting events. With that in mind, expect ESPN to log record audiences.

A quick trip to ESPN’s website shows another reason to like it. According to writer Ramona Shelburne, Disney is considering hosting the NBA as it wraps up its season in late July. Its Orlando property would allow a return to game play while still limiting dangerous exposure to the virus.

This news makes McCall’s recommendation sound even more logical. He wrote that a recent NASCAR race drew 6.3 million virtual fans. Can you imagine what a virtual NBA season, hosted on Disney property, would look like?

Whether you support DIS stock at $90, or near its current price of $122, there’s a lot to like. The road to recovery won’t be perfect, but Mickey Mouse is set to steer the company through the tough times ahead.

Barron’s: 15 Stocks to Buy for Big Growth at Value Prices

[Tuesday, May 26, 2:16 p.m.
Contributed by Sarah Smith

To some investors, the novel coronavirus has likely made the split between growth stocks and value stocks feel silly. A lot of solid companies now have “value” prices, and pending rebounds make a lot of beaten-down companies look like “growth” stories.

But as Barron’s Nicholas Jasinski wrote today, there’s more for investors to consider. That’s why Barron’s pulled together 15 stocks that have value prices — with forward price-earnings ratios below 15. Stocks on this list also are expected to grow their earnings per share by 10% each year for the next half decade.

That’s a tall order, but it’s not impossible. Just like the story of “Goldilocks and the Three Bears,” it’s important to find the exact fit.

Here are 15 stocks to consider for investments that fit “just right”:

  • AbbVie (NYSE:ABBV)
  • Albemarle (NYSE:ALB)
  • Alexion Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:ALXN)
  • Applied Materials (NASDAQ:AMAT)
  • Ameriprise Financial (NYSE:AMP)
  • Anthem (NYSE:ANTM)
  • Broadcom (NASDAQ:AVGO)
  • Bristol-Myers Squibb (NYSE:BMY)
  • CBRE Group (NYSE:CBRE)
  • Cigna (NYSE:CI)
  • Centene (NYSE:CNC)
  • Cabot Oil & Gas (NYSE:COG)
  • Fifth Third Bancorp (NASDAQ:FITB)
  • Lam Research (NASDAQ:LRCX)
  • Universal Health Services (NYSE:UHS)

Affluent Customers Make Williams-Sonoma Stock a Buy

[Tuesday, May 26, 2:09 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

The current angle on retail is grim. Brick-and-mortar shops were closed, and more than 38 million consumers now find themselves unemployed. Americans face mounting economic pressure, and anxiety is limiting their spending, particularly on non-essential items. One thing this narrative doesn’t include is a simple-but-important fact. Rich people are still shopping like rich people.

That’s why Telsey Advisory analyst Cristina Fernandez upgraded Williams-Sonoma (NYSE:WSM) stock to “outperform” from “market perform.” She also slapped an $80 price target on shares, which currently trade hands near $70.

In a note to clients, she wrote that there were three reasons Williams-Sonoma would benefit from the novel coronavirus (subscription required). According to the analyst, the company is already succeeding in increasing its online sales. Plus, its target demographic is affluent customers with over $100,000 in household income. This makes Williams-Sonoma’s home and kitchen products even more attractive to consumers now.

Sure, Williams-Sonoma sounds like an unlikely winner, but the numbers are there. Just as wealthier consumers are stocking up on at-home workout gear like Peloton (NASDAQ:PTON) bikes, it’s clear nice kitchen gear is at the top of many shopping lists.

Shares are up 4.1% in intraday trading on the upgrade. Keep a close eye on WSM and its luxury peers.

7 Travel Stocks to Buy as the World Returns to Normal

[Tuesday, May 26, 12:53 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Depending on where in the U.S. you live, beaches, lakes and public parks looked almost “normal” over the long weekend. Americans flocked to sunbathe as public health experts continue to warn of the dangers the novel coronavirus presents. For investors, consumers’ willingness to return the world of leisure bodes well for travel stocks.

There’s also data to back this up. Axios’ Dion Rabouin reported this morning that air travel demand is “significantly” rebounding. Transportation Security Administration data shows that as lockdowns continue to ease, more passengers are boarding flights.

Before the pandemic, roughly 2 million people were screened at airports each day. At the lows, less than 90,000 people were going through those checkpoints. But things are changing. As Rabouin writes, the TSA screened approximately 350,000 people on Friday, May 22.

There’s another catalyst helping travel stocks. On Monday, Novavax (NASDAQ:NVAX) announced it was ready to begin early trials of its coronavirus vaccine. That has NVAX shares up in intraday trading, but it’s also boosting airline and cruise stocks. Why? In theory, consumers will feel a whole lot safer about travel if they’ve received a vaccine.

Travel demand is surging, with or without a vaccine. With that in mind, travel stocks picked by InvestorPlace’s Will Ashworth are worth another look. He made these recommendations in late April, but he argued they were the top picks as consumers returned to the seas and sky.

Here are his seven recommendations:

  • Royal Caribbean (NYSE:RCL)
  • Southwest Air Lines (NYSE:LUV)
  • Estee Lauder (NYSE:EL)
  • Hilton Hotels (NYSE:HLT)
  • MGM Resorts International (NYSE:MGM)
  • Booking Holdings (NASDAQ:BKNG)

Novavax’s Vaccine Trial News Is Leading the Market Higher

[Tuesday, May 26, 11:29 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Once again, investors are rejoicing on news that an effective vaccine may be just around the corner. Novavax (NASDAQ:NVAX) announced yesterday that it was beginning early trials of its NVX‑CoV2373 vaccine for the novel coronavirus in Australia. Shares are up almost 14% in intraday trading.

There’s a lot to like here. Very early animal trials found that low doses of the vaccine worked. The human trials, which began today, should yield results by July. As Novavax ramps up production of the vaccine through funding from the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations, the company could have 100 million doses ready in 2020 and 1.5 billion doses ready in 2021.

And, as a MarketWatch report noted, Novavax’s vaccine candidate is slightly different than others under investigation. It is a recombinant vaccine, which means that it targets a very specific part of the virus. According to the Department of Health and Human Services, these vaccines typically trigger a stronger immune response.

Based on Tuesday’s rally, investors like what they see. A vaccine means that even the hardest-hit sectors of the economy, like travel, become more viable. That’s why analysts on Wall Street have a strong buy consensus rating on shares. Today, B. Riley analyst Mayank Mamtani set the highest price target yet, putting shares at $53.

Merck Stock Climbs on New Plan to Fight the Coronavirus

[Tuesday, May 26, 11:02 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Merck (NYSE:MRK) came ready for its moment in the spotlight with a three-prong plan to fight the novel coronavirus. As Barron’s Josh Nathan-Kazis wrote, Merck was late to the race, as its big pharmaceutical peers rolled out vaccine and treatment collaborations. However, CEO Ken Frazier said Merck has just been waiting for the right moment, and a proven platform to build a vaccine on.

In a Tuesday press release, the company announced it is working on two vaccines and one antiviral treatment. One vaccine comes through its acquisition of Themis Bioscience, another through a partnership with IAVI. Lastly, Merck is partnering with Ridgeback Bio on an oral antiviral treatment.

According to Frazier, Merck has a lot going for it in this fight. The company has experience developing vaccines and other treatments for HIV and Ebola. Is Wall Street buying it?

MRK shares are up 1.9% in intraday trading, slightly less than the S&P 500. But Mizuho Securities analyst Mara Goldstein upped her price target on shares to $100 this morning. Shares currently trade hands for less than $78.

Merck is a solid company working on three solid solutions. As this race heats up, look for the company to become a true leader.

Stocks Open Higher Tuesday on Vaccine Optimism

[Tuesday, May 26, 9:31 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Boy, it looks like all investors needed was a long weekend to turn things around. The major indices are ready to start the week on the right foot, as the Dow Jones Industrial Average adds 600 points.

To be fair, there’s also a lot of vaccine optimism in the market. Merck (NYSE:MRK) and Novavax (NASDAQ:NVAX) both are making on progress on solutions for the novel coronavirus. Combined, that news is more than enough to counter the World Health Organization’s move to stop trials of hydroxychloroquine.

There’s a lot to like. The S&P 500 and the Nasdaq Composite are also starting Tuesday deep in the green.

  • The S&P 500 opened higher by 2.22%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average opened higher by 2.51%
  • The Nasdaq Composite opened higher by 1.86%

10 Stocks to Buy to Invest Like Oakmark’s Bill Nygren

[Friday, May 22, 3:31 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Hopefully we’ve established in this blog that in times of uncertainty, it helps to follow the experts. If nothing else, their pandemic stock picks are a source of inspiration. That’s why value investor Bill Nygren’s top 10 holdings are worth a close look.

Nygren is the manager of the Oakmark Fund (NASDAQ:OAKMX), and he hasn’t exactly had a great year so far. However, after selling American Airlines (NASDAQ:AAL) and picking up some stay-at-home stocks, his fund’s top holdings are a good playbook for the current market.

According to Nygren, it’s important not to get too caught up in the short term. That’s why he’s focusing on companies with strong balance sheets, lots of cash and pandemic-proof businesses. Apparently, that’s not too tall of an order.

Here’s a look at his top holdings now (subscription required):

  • Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX)
  • Bank of America (NYSE:BAC)
  • Comcast (NASDAQ:CMCSA)
  • Citigroup (NYSE:C)
  • Facebook (NASDAQ:FB)
  • Charles Schwab (NYSE:SCHW)
  • State Street (NYSE:STT)
  • Capital One Financial (NYSE:COF)
  • TE Connectivity (NYSE:TEL)

2 Stocks to Buy as ‘Coronavirus Branding’ Gains Traction

[Friday, May 22, 2:47 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Early on in this pandemic, we saw how easily the novel coronavirus could destroy a company’s reputation. Cruise operators like Carnival (NYSE:CCL) and Royal Caribbean (NYSE:RCL) instantly became associated with the evils of the virus. Instead of luxurious pools and fruity cocktails, picture panicked passengers trapped in the middle of the ocean. It’s a public relations nightmare.

Granted, these companies are also facing no-cruise orders and major cash crunches. But the public relations element does matter. When ships start sailing again, Carnival and Royal Caribbean must convince consumers it’s safe to board.

That’s why, as Axios’ Felix Felix Salmon wrote, some hard-hit companies are turning to marketing to change their image. It’s a simple formula. Pick a disinfectant company, form a partnership with a research hospital and create a “safe” brand. If a business wants to survive in this new normal, it must convince consumers it’s safe to engage with its products and services.

So, what companies are doing this well? According to Salmon, United Airlines (NASDAQ:UAL) and Hilton (NYSE:HLT) are leading the pack. In this name-dropping exercise, United Airlines has United CleanPlus. It’s distributing Clorox (NYSE:CLX) products at its airports and working with the Cleveland Clinic to keep passengers safe. Hilton is following the exact same formula. The hotel chain is partnering with Reckitt Benckiser (OTCMKTS:RBGLY), the maker of Lysol. It’s also consulting with the Mayo Clinic to keep hotel travelers as safe as can be.

It’s a marketing scheme that likely makes your skin crawl, but it could be a winning strategy. We already knew that Clorox and Reckitt Benckiser were top buys, and their products are in high demand. The next logical move may just be to invest in companies that make reopening feel safer.

That’s exactly why Morgan Stanley’s Brian Pfeifler is bullish on traditional travel names now. Airbnb properties and other short-term rentals won’t feel as “safe” as regularly cleaned hotels with brand power and luxury status. I’ll take my complimentary Clorox wipes now, and recommend you do the same.

RBC: Rewards Outweigh the Risks With Boeing Stock

[Friday, May 22, 1:34 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Boeing (NYSE:BA) has been suffering for a long time. Last year, its 737 Max plane was behind two fatal accidents, and investigators keep digging up more flaws. Then, the novel coronavirus effectively wiped out air travel, and in turn wiped out Boeing’s business. Is it time to sell BA stock and move on?

Not so fast. RBC Capital analyst Michael Eisen made waves Thursday when he gave shares an “outperform” rating and a $164 price target. According to Eisen, the rewards with this investment outweigh the risks.

Boy did his client note make waves in the market. It’s been a long time since Wall Street showed Boeing any love, so shares were up 4% on the day. And Eisen really did show BA stock some love. He thinks the Federal Aviation Administration will give the 737 Max the green light in the third quarter, and predicted that passenger demand will see double-digit growth for several years, propelling shares higher.

It’s 57% year-to-date loss makes these optimism a little hard to believe, but InvestorPlace’s Will Ashworth agrees. He wrote last week that Boeing is one of the top stocks to buy if you’re betting on America. Why? Institutions — not to mention the U.S. federal government — are stepping up to support Boeing. At this point, it’s simply too big to fail.

Curbside Offerings Make Best Buy Stock a Winner Now

[Friday, May 22, 11:40 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Pardon the pun, but Best Buy (NYSE:BBY) stock may truly be one of the best equities to buy right now. Before the pandemic, the consumer electronics supplier was an icon of brick-and-mortar retail, and all of the struggles associated with it. A quick pivot to curbside sales changed everything. Now, analysts are calling Best Buy stock a “winner” and an “e-commerce play.”

Behind the noise is its May 21 earnings report, which unsurprisingly showed a drop in overall domestic revenue. But way more important is its domestic online revenue, which increased more than 155%. Why? In the middle of the fiscal first quarter, CEO Corie Barry pivoted the company to exclusively curbside operations. As Barry said, even without a single customer in its stores, the move helped preserve sales.

That’s why Retail Dive’s Ben Unglesbee wrote Thursday that Best Buy is set to emerge as a “winner.” The quick pivot, combined with consumers’ positive reaction to curbside sales, shows that it’s innovative. It doesn’t hurt that e-commerce giant Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) saw its delivery times increase. For many shoppers, curbside pick-up is just more convenient.

Plus, consumer electronics suddenly became hot-button items. Video game consoles were flying off the shelves in the first quarter as Americans found themselves bored at home. Work-from-home accessories like webcams are also in high demand.

Some will surely say that this is only a short-term, unsustainable rally. However, Wall Street doesn’t agree with that argument. Oppenheimer analyst Brian Nagel gave BBY stock a $105 price target, implying more than 30% upside. InvestorPlace’s Josh Enomoto also recently jumped on the Best Buy bandwagon, pointing out its market dominance in the consumer electronics and appliance segments.

If nothing else, Best Best stock is a feel-good buy. Start betting on this old-school retailer’s comeback story, because you don’t want to miss out.

3 Restaurant Stocks to Buy as Diners Return

[Friday, May 22, 10:46 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Restaurants are in a tricky position, but according to President Donald Trump, things could be changing. At a May 18 meeting with top industry executives, he said Moderna’s (NASDAQ:MRNA) early success, among other novel coronavirus breakthroughs, could get diners back in their seats soon.

With that in mind, InvestorPlace’s Tezcan Gecgil rounded up three top restaurant stocks. She’s confident, but she’s looking at at least a two-year timeframe for returns. In other words, these stocks present great opportunities, but you likely won’t see share prices double overnight.

Although the names on her list have struggled, she’s confident their size and brand power will help them persevere. Here’s what she’s recommending now:

  • Denny’s (NASDAQ:DENN)
  • McDonald’s (NYSE:MCD)
  • Starbucks (NASDAQ:SBUX)

Stocks Open Lower on U.S.-China Fears

[Friday, May 22, 9:49 a.m.]
Contributed by Jessica Loder

What a way to start the day before a long weekend.

The Nasdaq, S&P 500 and Dow  Jones were all in the red during the overnight hours, and the opening bell hasn’t changed that trend. It seems like a big part of the nerves comes from fear that the U.S. and China could start butting heads again. According to Yahoo Finance, Thursday saw “senators introducing a bipartisan bill that would sanction Chinese officials and organizations who enforce newly introduced security measures in Hong Kong. This came a day after the Senate passed a bill that would make it more difficult for Chinese companies to list on U.S. stock exchanges.”

That may explain why big-name Chinese companies like Alibaba (NYSE:BABA) and (NASDAQ:JD) both opening deep in the red on Friday.

Will we see a turnaround? Only the bulls can know that.

  • The S&P 500 is currently down by 0.39%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average is currently down by 0.47%
  • The Nasdaq Composite is currently down by 0.32%

Wedbush: Royal Caribbean Stock Is the Best Cruise Buy

[Thursday, May 21, 4:41 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

It may not be time to board cruise ships yet, but according to Wedbush analyst James Hardiman, it’s time to start buying Royal Caribbean (NYSE:RCL) stock.

As InvestorPlace’s Bret Kenwell wrote in his daily column, Hardiman said Royal Caribbean was the strongest of its peers. From his note to clients:

“We would argue that RCL had the best momentum headed into the pandemic and see no reason this will not be the case coming out of the pandemic.”

The analyst gave RCL shares an “outperform” rating and a $63 price target. So what should investors make of all that? To start, the rest of Wall Street agrees. Shares are considered a “moderate buy” and have an average 12-month price target just over $60. That implies almost 40% upside.

Even InvestorPlace’s Mark Hake agrees. After writing that Royal Caribbean was approaching “failure,” Hake changed his mind. Now he writes investors should see the current price as a discounted opportunity to get in on a rebound story. Chances are, pent-up demand will get customers back on board sooner than we may think.

Stocks Close Lower Thursday After Morning Jobless Report

[Thursday, May 21, 4:01 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

It looks like the bulls just couldn’t shake this morning’s doom and gloom. News that 2.4 million more Americans had filed for unemployment benefits temporarily shook the optimism from the market.

What else moved the market today? AstraZeneca (NYSE:AZN) received more than $1 billion of funding for its novel coronavirus vaccine. Plus, every state in the U.S. is moving forward with some part of a three-phase reopening plan. Will tomorrow bring a rally as we head into the long weekend?

For now, one thing is clear. The S&P 500Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite all closed the day in the red.

  • The S&P 500 closed lower by 0.78%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed lower by 0.41%
  • The Nasdaq Composite closed lower by 0.97%

Don’t Miss Out on 2 New ‘Accelerated Income Generators’

[Thursday, May 21, 3:31 p.m.]
Contributed by Andrew Taylor

Last night, investing legend Louis Navellier revealed his Accelerated Income Project for the very first time…

And it was incredible.

He showed folks how he uses his advanced, high-speed computer system to target the safest, most-lucrative income opportunities on the market.

One of the past investments it found produced a payout yield of 209% in seven months…

Another generated 88% in four months…

And a third produced 169% in just over a year.

Those are just three of dozens of examples.

And the curious thing is these gains didn’t come from options, bonds, dividends or any of the other traditional investments folks think of when it comes to earning income.

They came from a special type of investment Louis calls “accelerated income generators…”

Which can hand you an incredible amount of hold-in-your-hand cash in no time.

And as Louis was doing research for his new income project, he found a way to target them left and right…

In fact, he just targeted two more not too long ago…

And in a few hours he’ll officially add them to his Accelerated Income Project “buy list.”

You can learn how to access Louis’ two brand-new recommendations — and all of his new income research — by going here. Stock Is a True E-Commerce Winner

[Thursday, May 21, 1:40 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

It’s true that many e-commerce companies are winning in the face of the novel coronavirus, but perhaps none is as strong as (NASDAQ:JD). The Chinese company quickly adapted as the outbreak hit its home country, and has now emerged victorious.

According to Supply Chain Dive’s Emma Cosgrove,’s operating costs hit an all-time low this quarter. In other words, high demand and cost-cutting measures combined to fight added operating costs from the pandemic. American rival Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) faces a different reality as it anticipates dedicating its entire Q2 operating profit to cover new delivery expenses.

So what is working for JD? According to the company, in-house logistics and innovations like delivery drones helped it in its early fight against the coronavirus. Plus, the e-commerce giant’s new grocery offering sourced local produce, countering supply-chain disruptions at larger food suppliers.

Shares are up almost 50% year-to-date, and analysts keep sending JD stock love in the form of buy ratingsInvestorPlace Markets Analyst Luke Lango even said it was one the top 15 stocks to buy in 2020. Why? He thinks the company is well-equipped to navigate any logistics challenges and will benefit from the growing popularity of e-commerce in China. is doing something right, and it’s paying off. Look for operating costs to keep falling, especially as pandemic-driven expenses disappear. JD stock is an excellent investment for an e-commerce future.

7 Stocks to Buy Now With Strong Balance Sheets

[Thursday, May 21, 1:05 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

It’s a nerve-wracking time to be an investor. On one hand, billionaires like Warren Buffett and David Tepper aren’t buying up stocks. The unemployment figures keeps climbing — now it’s above 38 million. Plus, even big companies are facing a cash crunch as the novel coronavirus weighs on their operations.

On the other hand, vaccine developers like Moderna (NASDAQ:MRNA) have the potential to send the Dow Jones Industrial Average higher by 3% in a day. Some solid companies now have more reasonable share prices and make great buy-the-dip candidates. How is an investor supposed to balance all of the chaos and make decisions?

InvestorPlace’s Will Ashworth has a great solution. Don’t run from the markets and cash out, but also focus your money on companies with strong balance sheets. These companies have the cash to weather even a prolonged downturn, but you’ll still benefit from rebound action.

Here are seven stocks he’s recommending now:

  • Visa (NYSE:V)
  • Nike (NYSE:NKE)
  • Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ)
  • Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT)
  • Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL)
  • McDonald’s (NYSE:MCD)
  • Coca-Cola (NYSE:KO)

AstraZeneca Stock Climbs After Receiving Vaccine Funding

[Thursday, May 21, 11:39 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Another day, another vaccine developer making big moves in the market. After Moderna (NASDAQ:MRNA) and Inovio Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:INO) got some time in the spotlight this week, it’s AstraZeneca’s (NYSE:AZN) turn. Shares are are up a modest 2.9% in intraday trading.

In an early morning press release AstraZeneca shared it had received $1 billion from the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority. This funding comes as part of President Donald Trump’s Operation Warp Speed designed to ramp up production and distribution of vaccines for the novel coronavirus.

According to the Trump administration, the private-public partnership will combine AZN’s vaccine success with the U.S. government’s ability to scale manufacturing. This deal should ultimately make 30 million doses of the vaccine available by September.

Additionally, AstraZeneca said today that in partnership with the University of Oxford, it will still have 400 million doses ready at some point in the fall. Through its work with university researchers, it also nabbed $79 million from the United Kingdom’s government.

Will this private-public partnership be the model for vaccine development moving forward? It sounds like a win for investors, as it brings confidence that Americans will be first in line to receive vaccines. Now all we need is for a vaccine to work.

2 Restaurant Stocks to Buy as Grocery Prices Rise

[Thursday, May 21, 11:17 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

One of the big themes of 2020 so far is that restaurant stocks are out, and grocery store stocks are in. However, that trend may be about to reverse as grocery prices rise. According to CNBC’s Thomas Franck, meat and eggs led prices higher by 2.6% in April. That’s the biggest one-month jump since 1974.

More Americans are cooking meals at home, and panic over the novel coronavirus hasn’t subsided. That means plenty of shoppers are still focused on “stocking up” and demand for key groceries is high. At the same time, we’ve previously reported in this blog on a host of supply-chain issues. Together, these catalysts are combing to raise prices at a very inopportune time.

For Wedbush analyst Nick Setyan, this inflation is a good sign things are turning around for restaurants. The analyst believes that while delivery and pick-up options have somewhat helped restaurants, they aren’t making up for dine-in demand. If groceries become less accessible, that will change.

That’s why, as Barron’s Teresa Rivas writes, Setyan is bullish on two particular restaurant stocks. He likes Jack in the Box (NASDAQ:JACK) and Texas Roadhouse (NASDAQ:TXRH). According to Setyan, JACK stock will benefit from the chain’s popularity among burger lovers. And because Texas Roadhouse is seen as a “value’ restaurant, TXRH stock should also get a nice boost.

Setyan gave each stock an “outperform” rating. He has a 12-month price target of $80 on JACK and $73 on TXRH. If anything, it’s a great way for investors to profit from an otherwise gloomy reality.

10 Stocks to Buy to Invest Like Hedge Fund Pros

[Thursday, May 21, 10:28 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Are you hungry for a hot dog? I sure am, especially as the weather heats up. It turns out, hedge funds are also hungry for hot dogs, but not the BBQ treat.

In the hedge fund world, hot dogs are top-owned stocks outperforming the S&P 500. Right now, these standout names matter even more, because hedge funds are known for riding out volatility better than most individual investors.

So why should individual investors care? It’s true that hedge funds aren’t particularly accessible. Individuals must be “accredited” — in other words, they must be worth a lot of money — to participate. Well, a recent survey of 342 hedge funds just shed some light on their favorite stocks. As the novel coronavirus disrupts the market, following in the footsteps of these volatility pros isn’t a bad idea.

Here is a list of the 10 top-owned stocks now (subscription required):

  • Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN)
  • Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT)
  • Allergan (NYSE:AGN)
  • Facebook (NASDAQ:FB)
  • Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX)
  • Fidelity National Information Services (NYSE:FIS)
  • Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL)
  • Visa (NYSE:V)
  • Charter Communications (NASDAQ:CHTR)

Stocks Sink Thursday as the Jobless Total Climbs

[Thursday, May 21, 9:31 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

We’ve seen this before, but it still hurts. Investors learned this morning that another 2.4 million Americans filed for unemployment benefits. That means over 38 million people lost their jobs as a result of the novel coronavirus. It’s jarring to say the least.

Let’s digest this a bit more. Stock futures headed into the red on the news, despite the fact jobless claims are declining. That’s likely because as states reopen, investors were hoping for an even smaller figure today.

Unfortunately, that wasn’t the case. The S&P 500Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite all opened lower this morning.

  • The S&P 500 opened lower by 0.07%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average opened lower by 0.12%
  • The Nasdaq Composite opened lower by 0.02%

Is It Time to Buy Penn National Stock as Casinos Reopen?

[Wednesday, May 20, 4:34 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Penn National Gaming (NASDAQ:PENN) made some investors happy on Wednesday. Shares of the popular stock closed higher by almost 13% on news it was reopening casinos in Mississippi. As we’ve previously reported in this blog, PENN and its gambling peers have been high-flying equities as investors bet on a big recovery for the industry.

InvestorPlace’s Bret Kenwell included Penn National as one of the top movers in the stock market today. As Kenwell wrote, it got approval to reopen 10 casinos. Five locations in Louisiana reopened on Monday, and 5 in Mississippi will reopen tomorrow. It’s not a lot, but any return to normal is worthy of praise.

With that in mind, many InvestorPlace contributors are bullish on the name. Nicolas Chahine wrote that the rally can take shares 35% higher. Laura Hoy wrote that while there’s risk in the space, Penn National is the best play.

There’s one more thing to note. JPMorgan analyst Joseph Greff just reiterated his “buy” rating on PENN stock today. Although his 12-month price target of $28 doesn’t imply much upside, it’s still nice to know Wall Street is rooting for the company too.

Stocks Close Higher Wednesday, Reversing Earlier Losses

[Wednesday, May 20, 4:01 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Wow, bulls are clearly the winners on Wednesday. It seems like after Moderna (NASDAQ:MRNA) betrayed investors’ trust on Tuesday, confidence and optimism are back in the market.

So, what happened on Wednesday? Inovio Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:INO) released its own vaccine news, the Federal Reserve warned of long-lasting impacts to the economy and Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) and Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) hit new highs.

There’s a lot to rally behind, but there are still lurking threats from the novel coronavirus. The World Health Organization reported that new cases jumped a record amount across the world in the last 24 hours.

The major indices are ignoring that for now at least, as the S&P 500Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite all closed in the green.

  • The S&P 500 closed higher by 1.67%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed higher by 1.52%
  • The Nasdaq Composite closed higher by 2.08%

Plug Into Coronavirus Potential With Spotify Stock

[Wednesday, May 20, 3:35 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Spotify (NYSE:SPOT) is another unlikely winner in our new world. At the start of state-wide lockdowns, many experts predicted shares would tumble. That’s because many streamers use commute and gym to listen to music and podcasts. Instead, Spotify actually saw user growth. More consumers started plugging in while lounging around the house, and especially while cooking.

Some, like InvestorPlace Markets Analyst Luke Lango, doubt Spotify stock’s potential. Lango wrote last week that any reason for a rally has come and gone. News today may change that.

Joe Rogan is famous in the podcast world. His Joe Rogan Experience is popular on Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) and Alphabet’s (NASDAQ:GOOG, NASDAQ:GOOGL) streaming platforms. Now, Spotify gets the exclusive rights.

Each month, there are approximately 190 million downloads of the Joe Rogan Experience. And according to the Wall Street Journal, this deal values it at $100 million.

This is a big win for Spotify, and it now has even more solid footing in the fight against Apple and YouTube. But according to the team at Morning Brew, there’s even more to like between the lines. Part of the rights deal includes video — something new to the Spotify podcast world. Apparently, consumers are shifting to video streaming over audio streaming in lockdown, and Spotify wants to embrace that.

When the Joe Rogan Experience debuts on Spotify in September, the full video podcasts will be available. As Spotify strengthens its lead in this popular media niche, especially as it lines up with pandemic behavior shifts, expect it to be a long-term winner.

Barclays: 8 Stocks to Buy for the Next Pandemic Rebound

[Wednesday, May 20, 2:38 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Stocks tumbled hard, and then some names seriously rebounded. Investors who missed out on those early quarantine rallies in companies like Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) and Activision Blizzard (NASDAQ:ATVI) are probably kicking themselves.

But, Barclays analysts think there’s reason to be optimistic. Investors piled into e-commerce and video game companies, but some hard-hit sectors still haven’t felt any love. Getting in now will create ample room to profit.

As reopening plans progress, Barclays believes ride-hailing names, travel companies and digital advertising plays are likely to rebound the most (subscription required).

With that in mind, they’re recommending eight stocks now for bold investors. Here’s the list:

  • Uber (NYSE:UBER)
  • Lyft (NASDAQ:LYFT)
  • Booking Holdings (NASDAQ:BKNG)
  • Expedia (NASDAQ:EXPE)
  • TripAdvisor (NASDAQ:TRIP)
  • Facebook (NASDAQ:FB)
  • Snap (NYSE:SNAP)

Is Penny Stock Phunware Set to Be a Coronavirus Winner?

[Wednesday, May 20, 2:09 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

I’ll start with the basics here. Phunware (NASDAQ:PHUN) is a tiny company that specializes in fully integrated software. Right now, its mobile-first solutions for healthcare businesses are driving a lot of investor attention. After announcing a partnership with Hewlett Packard Enterprise (NYSE:HPE) today, shares are up 195%.

Granted, shares are up 195% and still trade at $1.97. HPE has a healthcare unit, and now that unit will have access to Phunware’s full suite of pandemic offerings. As a “full-stack” company, Phunware’s software helps with customer engagement, management and monetization.

So what exactly are these pandemic offerings? It can send mobile messages en masse, alerting patients of novel coronavirus test sites, appointment options and nearby confirmed cases. Phunware also promises to facilitate virtual visits, provide a patient portal and manage prescription refills. It truly manages the whole mobile medical experience.

For investors, it looks like the small company’s top-notch portfolio and the weight of its new partner are driving the excitement. Phunware’s penny-stock status is definitely reason for concern, but if it continues to expand its reach with relevant products, it could be a big winner.

Hungry for Some Profit? Buy Blue Apron Stock Now.

[Wednesday, May 20, 1:43 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Let’s take stock of the food situation real quick. You can brave a grocery store, or if you’re lucky, get in an order with a delivery service like Instacart. You can order delivery and pick-up from several restaurants, and companies like Grubhub (NYSE:GRUB) facilitate that process.

As a consumer, thinking outside of the box opens your lockdown-approved food options. As an investor, these options represent major potential. No, I’m not talking about eating with mannequins at reopened restaurants. I’m talking about meal delivery companies like Blue Apron (NYSE:APRN).

Blue Apron has received a lot of criticism since its IPO. Sure, the idea sounded promising, but the demand just wasn’t there. Consumers signed up for meal kits and then canceled subscriptions. But now that grocery shopping is considered dangerous and eating out is limited, Blue Apron is a winner.

According to The New York Times’ David Gelles, Blue Apron is seeing meaningful improvements. CEO Linda Kozlowski said the company saw a 27% increase in demand in early April. New customers came rushing for meal kits, and old customers returned or increased their plans.

Kozlowski’s comments highlighted two other key details. At the start of the lockdowns, Blue Apron actually cut advertising spending, and still saw a flock of new customers. To me, that’s proof it’s a household name, even if households weren’t all ordering before. Additionally, as it sources ingredients from smaller companies, Kozlowski maintains that supply-chain impacts have been minimal.

Is it time to buy a stock that once was a joke on Wall Street? InvestorPlace Markets Analyst Luke Lango thinks so. He wrote in early May that while Blue Apron will certainly see some churn, many of its new customers will stick around. The long-term impacts of the pandemic are so unknown that a meal kit may be the comfort households need.

One more thing to note. Privately held Thrive Market is another winner in this meal-kit revolution. The company specializes in healthy foods and eco-friendly cleaning products. Although the timeline is unclear, CEO Nick Green is prepping the company for an IPO.

7 Stocks to Buy for a Contact-Tracing Future

[Wednesday, May 20, 12:57 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

In February, many Americans likely had never heard of social distancing. Now, that phrase, and the guidelines associated with it, dominates our collective vocabulary. Is “contact tracing” set to do the same? If so, investors ought to get in now to profit.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, contact tracing is a key part of the path toward recovery from the novel coronavirus. If an individual tests positive, healthcare workers will identify all other individuals they were in contact with. From there, those individuals are informed of the situation and given preventive steps. Some — if not all — would be called in for testing.

In theory, all contact tracing requires is a little bit of old-fashioned sleuthing. Patients must be honest, and then healthcare workers can dig through the rest. But many that have Big Tech leanings are proposing a different solution.

Countries like South Korea and Singapore used tech to digitally track and map all confirmed cases. Some in the U.S. want to do the same, and Big Tech is stepping up with the offerings. Right now, concerns around privacy are dominating the conversation. Regardless, you don’t want to miss out.

InvestorPlace’s Chris Markoch pushed through the controversy and rounded up the top seven stocks involved in contact tracing. These make solid buys in an area of public health innovation. Here’s his list:

  • Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL)
  • Alibaba (NYSE:BABA)
  • Tencent Holdings (OTCMKTS:TCEHY)
  • Deutsche Telekom (OTCMKTS:DTEGY)
  • Conduent (NASDAQ:CNDT)

Inovio Pharmaceuticals Stock Climbs on Early Vaccine Win

[Wednesday, May 20, 12:27 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Just two days after Moderna (NASDAQ:MRNA) moved the market with a novel coronavirus vaccine update, Inovio Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:INO) is looking to do the same. An early morning press release has shares up about 9% in intraday trading. It’s not as big as some of the recent swings we’ve seen, but perhaps investors are wary after scientists questioned the veracity of Moderna’s report yesterday.

According to the release, Inovio has published its preclinical findings in a peer-reviewed journal, Nature Communications. This data shows that its INO-4800 vaccine successfully generated antibodies for the coronavirus in mice and guinea pigs, its animal test group.

So, what are the next steps? Reuters’ Deena Beasley wrote this morning that Inovio began Phase 1 human trials in April. This early round of study is designed to show whether a vaccine is safe, and whether it can trigger an immune response. Inovio anticipates releasing data from that study in June.

From there, Inovio is targeting Phase 2 and 3 trial start dates in July or August. The company has been a leader in the fight against the coronavirus, but as InvestorPlace’ s Mark Hake wrote this morning, it lacks the manufacturing power of its larger rivals. Plus, it is choosing to pursue an innovative-but-challenging approach to vaccine design.

Regardless of the challenges, InvestorPlace analyst Louis Navellier is bullish on INO stock. He wrote yesterday that investors should add it to their high-growth biotech holdings, and that its potential goes way beyond the coronavirus.

Keep a close eye on the stock. Its June report is likely to move the market, in one direction or another, and good vaccine news would mean great things for shareholders.

5 Telemedicine Stocks to Buy as This Megatrend Ramps Up

[Wednesday, May 20, 11:35 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

There are many reasons that the adoption of telemedicine has so quickly accelerated. It’s simply convenient, taking out the time and hassle associated with doctor’s appointments. And as the novel coronavirus has made clear, it’s a whole lot safer.

Many non-essential practices closed offices, rushing to adopt new telemedicine solutions. Plus, Americans were encouraged to consider virtual appointments even when offices were open to be considerate to fellow patients and doctors.

InvestorPlace analyst Matt McCall has long been bullish on telemedicine and other similar tech “megatrends.” He’s been recommending industry leader Teladoc (NYSE:DOC) for more than two years. Now, he’s also highlighting Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) and Alibaba (NYSE:BABA), as the two tech giants move into telemedicine and other healthcare offerings.

It’s fair to ask if this trend will slow down once more offices reopen and pandemic fears subside. But, McCall doesn’t think so. As he wrote this week, the pandemic kicked telemedicine into “overdrive.”

Before the coronavirus massively disrupted healthcare, many consumers likely associated telemedicine with simple appointments. Perhaps they thought it was an option for the common cold or a quick prescription refill — not a real substitute for in-person appointments.

Now, The New York Times describes how patients are receiving virtual physical therapy and routine care for chronic health conditions. Others are turning to telemedicine platforms for abortion and cancer care. In just a few short weeks, telemedicine has stepped up as a pretty good mirror for in-person offerings.

Sure, doctors still need physical appointments for many conditions, and we’re definitely not headed to a telemedicine-only world. But the convenience and capability of telemedicine is now burned in consumers’ minds, and doctors are embracing the tech like never before. That certainly sounds like “overdrive” to me.

InvestorPlace’s Ian Cooper has two more standout telemedicine plays. He recently recommended CVS Health (NYSE:CVS) and Anthem (NYSE:ANTM), as the two traditional companies embrace virtual offerings — and bring brand recognition to the online space.

Buy Verizon Stock for its Attractive BlueJeans Acquisition

[Wednesday, May 20, 11:00 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Verizon (NYSE:VZ) just fast-tracked its acquisition of BlueJeans, and its future is looking bright. No, it didn’t just get a well-fitting pair of jeans. For less than $500 million it snapped up the smaller video conferencing company, hoping to add to its own offerings.

VZ announced the deal in mid-April, as video conferencing picked up a loyal following. BlueJeans is a business-to-business video conferencing provider, and it’s certainly smaller than rival Zoom Video (NASDAQ:ZM). One plus is that’s enterprise-focused, as opposed to Zoom that has welcomed schools, companies and bored individuals alike. That should translate to more paying customers.

In a quick turnaround, Verizon announced that the deal closed Monday, and investors should be paying attention. Not only is video conferencing hot right now, the BlueJeans deal makes VZ attractive for the long term. Its clients are often in the telemedicine or online learning worlds.

Plus, Verizon is a leader in the growing 5G trend. The novel coronavirus is certainly going to disrupt work, healthcare and education for the foreseeable future, and it could have a permanent impact. With that in mind, Verizon’s tech offerings just got a lot more attractive.

Need more convincing? InvestorPlace’s Josh Enomoto wrote that Verizon stock is one of the top so-called coronavirus stocks to buy now. Wireless services, and the rest of Verizon’s tech, are becoming even more important in our new world.

2 Digital Advertising Stocks to Buy for a Virtual Election

[Wednesday, May 20, 10:31 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

It’s hard to think about the upcoming presidential election when so much of day-to-day life is still driven by the novel coronavirus. But, as we remain at home, President Donald Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden are going head to head. For two digital advertising stars, this could been a big revenue boost.

As we’ve previously reported in this blog, it’s a tough time to be in the digital ad business. Big clients — like those in the travel and leisure world — are pulling way back on spending. For Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) and Alphabet (NASDAQ:GOOG, NASDAQ:GOOGL), a virtual campaign trail could help fill that revenue gap.

Initial projects called for campaign spending to hit $6 billion, but according to Axios’ Sara Fischer, that figure will be closer to $6.7 billion. At least $2 billion will go exclusively to online video campaigns. Without the usual in-person events that mark a ramping up of campaigning, these online ads will become increasingly important in determining November’s outcome.

Facebook and Alphabet are the biggest names in the digital advertising space, and Fischer writes that they will see most of the inflow. On Monday, InvestorPlace’s Bret Kenwell wrote that FB stock is a buy on the next dip. Although advertising is under pressure, it’s not “falling apart.”

We’re living in a world of mail-in ballots and social media advertising. Don’t miss out on big companies leading that world.

Stocks Open Higher Wednesday as Moderna Slumps

[Wednesday, May 20, 9:31 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Investors haven’t forgiven Moderna (NASDAQ:MRNA) on Wednesday, but stocks are still opening in the green. With a report still clouding its early results, the vaccine maker opened down after dropping 10% in Tuesday trading.

However, another vaccine maker is bringing hope to Wall Street today. Inovio Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:INO) reported that its vaccine candidate produced antibodies for the novel coronavirus in guinea pigs and mice. Sure, it’s not humans, but it’s still an exciting step. Shares of INO were up almost 15% in pre-market trading.

Will Inovio’s victory be enough to sustain a rally in the stock market today? Let’s wait and see. Until then, the S&P 500Dow Jones Industrial Average and the S&P 500 are all ready for success.

  • The S&P 500 opened higher by 1.27%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average opened higher by 1.25%
  • The Nasdaq Composite opened higher by 1.35%

Big Tech Turns Up the Heat With Big Retail Deals

[Tuesday, May 19, 4:43 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Oh, the retail apocalypse. Brick-and-mortar retailers continue to dig their own graves, especially as the novel coronavirus weighs on shopping. On Tuesday, it looks like Pier 1 (OTCMKTS:PIRRQ) will become the next big name filing for bankruptcy — and potentially, liquidation.

But as InvestorPlace’s Bret Kenwell wrote in his daily column, Big Tech is upping the stakes in retail. Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) announced a new Shops feature that will allow businesses to set up “storefronts” on Facebook and Instagram. Kenwell said eventually, Facebook will allow product sales through Messenger, Instagram Direct and WhatsApp.

Elsewhere in the tech world rumors are swirling that Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) is looking to acquire J.C. Penney (NYSE:JCP). The latter just filed for bankruptcy, and Amazon sees the deal as a way to beef up its e-commerce apparel offerings. Oh, the irony. Amazon killed the department stores, and now is seeking to acquire them.

InvestorPlace analyst Eric Fry wrote today that it’s important to get on the right side of the technochasm, the tech-fueled split between the “haves” and the “have nots.” It’s clear companies like Amazon and Facebook have what it takes to profit. Dying retailers like Pier 1 and J.C. Penney do not.

Investors agree. FB shares were up 1.7% in the stock market today, while AMZN shares added about 1%.

Stocks Slip Tuesday on Moderna Vaccine Concerns

[Tuesday, May 19, 4:01 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Yesterday, Moderna (NASDAQ:MRNA) took the entire stock market higher when it announced its early trials showed promising results. On Tuesday, doubts over the company’s report took stocks down.

According to reporting from Stat News’ Helen Branswell, several scientists are questioning Moderna’s report, claiming it didn’t provide enough context. Other experts that Branswell spoke with said it was odd the National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Diseases did not comment on the findings. Plus, Moderna does not have a history of publishing its findings in peer-reviewed journals.

Even tech stocks couldn’t hold up as that report shoved away yesterday’s optimism. The S&P 500Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite all closed Tuesday in the red.

  • The S&P 500 closed lower by 1.05%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed lower by 1.59%
  • The Nasdaq Composite closed lower by 0.54%

Is the Vroom IPO a Way to Play Coronavirus Car Trends?

[Tuesday, May 19, 3:31 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Yesterday, online car marketplace Vroom filed for a listing on the Nasdaq Exchange under the ticker VRM. It’s surprising to see a company push forward with initial public offering plans, especially as many have opted for delays amid the novel coronavirus.

Critics, or perhaps simply realists, have pointed out that Vroom is not profitable. It also hasn’t been immune to the pandemic, as car sales dropped and the company furloughed one-third of its employees. As Axios’ Kia Kokalitcheva writes, demand has returned to pre-crisis levels, but sales now come with lower profits for Vroom.

Perhaps what’s most interesting is the coronavirus-driven market potential. As we reported yesterday, there’s reason to believe that consumers will opt to purchase cars instead of taking public transportation. With that in mind, traditional automakers like General Motors (NYSE:GM) and Ford (NYSE:F) saw a rally on Monday.

There’s another angle to Vroom that could be a big post-IPO catalyst. Car buyers simply find the car they want on Vroom’s website, supply necessary paperwork and complete financing through partner banks. Then, Vroom delivers the car to the buyer — no face-to-face contact necessary — and gives a seven-day test drive window. Will this contactless shopping truly be the future for car sales?

If you’re not ready to rally behind an IPO stock, InvestorPlace analyst Louis Navellier has a better option for you. Just this morning he recommended Carvana (NYSE:CVNA), for very similar reasons. He wrote that in a post-pandemic world, he expects shoppers to use Carvana for its contactless buying experience. Whether it be Vroom or Carvana, you don’t want to miss out.

5 Sin Stocks to Buy Now for Post-Pandemic Partying

[Tuesday, May 19, 3:03 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

In many ways, the novel coronavirus is making Americans more socially responsible. Consumers are choosing to prepare more of their own meals, using allotted time outdoors to exercise and washing their hands — a lot. But InvestorPlace’s Thomas Niel is convinced that once lockdowns ease, many will take the opportunity to party.

As Niel writes, it’s been surprisingly hard to “sin” in quarantine. Alcohol stocks are hurt by the decline in on-premise sales, although it’s now easier than ever to get beer, wine and liquor delivered straight to your door. Some fear drops in cannabis demand are on the way as consumers move away from non-essential purchases. Oh, and it’s hard to spend money at a casino when all of the casinos are closed.

What’s beautiful to investors in this world of vice is that while consumers are on lockdown, they’re building up demand. When things reopen, that pent-up demand will turn into big spending. That’s why Niel is betting on a big rebound — and a bigger party for shareholders.

Here are the five sin stocks he’s recommending now:

  • Altria Group (NYSE:MO)
  • Constellation Brands (NYSE:STZ)
  • Diageo (NYSE:DEO)
  • MGM Resorts (NYSE:MGM)
  • Molson Coors (NYSE:TAP)

Dynavax Stock Soars as Investors Await Vaccine Update

[Tuesday, May 19, 2:32 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Dynavax Technologies (NASDAQ:DVAX), a small biopharmaceutical company, is soaring Tuesday. Shares shot up over 40% at one point in after-hours trading, and are hovering at 20% gains right now. So what exactly is driving this rally?

The company specializes in vaccines, and has entered the race to develop a candidate for the novel coronavirus. But, Dynavax isn’t working alone. Since early March, it has announced partnerships with the University of Queensland, the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness InnovationsValnevaSinovac Biotech and Clover Biopharmaceuticals.

These companies bring their own skills and technology, and Dynavax offers its adjuvant, which it uses in a hepatitis B vaccine. Such an adjuvant should increase the effectiveness of the vaccine.

Through CEPI, Dynavax has even offered its adjuvant to any other companies that could improve their candidates. DVAX stock is up almost 80% in the last month.

Yesterday, the company really got investors excited. In a filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commissions, it said it plans to provide an update on these partnerships today. Dynavax said in this filing it anticipates at least one of its partners will move into a Phase 1 vaccine trial by July.

Keep a close eye on the news, and the company’s investor relations page. Any update on its partnerships could mean big gains both today and in the long term.

Buy ShiftPixy Stock as U.S. Restaurants Reopen

[Tuesday, May 19, 1:44 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Restaurants around the country are struggling as dine-in options remain very limited, if not completely prohibited. Demand for take-out and delivery services is there, but consumers are eating more at home and spending less on non-essential items. As a result, at least 8 million restaurant workers in the United States have been laid off or furloughed.

But what happens when restaurants reopen? Do the employees all come rushing back? Those questions have largely been left out of the conversation. That is, until today. ShiftPixy (NASDAQ:PIXY), a gig employment platform, is climbing 90% in intraday trading because its solutions aim to answer those questions.

The small-cap company just entered a new partnership with an operator of Del Taco (NASDAQ:TACO) restaurants in New Mexico. Those locations will now use ShiftPixy’s solutions to “combat” the novel coronavirus’ impact on the restaurant industry.

One solution allows native delivery. Although services like Grubhub (NYSE:GRUB) and DoorDash help keep the lights on, their steep commissions seriously hurt restaurants. With ShiftPixy, restaurants can more easily manage their own in-house delivery, to save money on commissions and create better relationships with consumers.

Another solution helps restaurants get their workers back once they reopen, and also helps part-time restaurant workers find shifts. Known as a human capital management tool, ShiftPixy is working to better organize gig employees as restaurants around the country fight through the chaos.

It’s clear investors like the potential here, especially as the solutions address a very real problem. Keep a close eye on PIXY stock. If the company keeps picking up customers, good things are surely in store.

10 Stocks to Buy to Invest Like Stanley Druckenmiller

[Tuesday, May 19, 1:20 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

When the market is thrown into chaos, it’s nice to know how the biggest players in the investing world are handling things. Stanley Druckenmiller, like many ordinary, individual investors, is loading up on stay-at-home stocks.

His Duquesne Family Office opened new positions in high-flying tech companies, and closed positions in big bank stocks, Snap (NYSE:SNAP), Marathon Oil (NYSE:MRO) and FedEx (NYSE:FDX).

Remember, Druckenmiller is most known for his work with George Soros, and his previous firm, Duquesne Capital. He’s had a rough couple of years as his fund underperformed the S&P 500. But, he’s known for quick trades and is worth almost $5 billion.

As the famous investor eyes stocks that benefit from the novel coronavirus, he’s also quick to criticize the market. He recently told CNBC that he doesn’t like how the market looks here, citing a “bad” risk-reward balance. In that context, his pandemic plays make a lot more sense.

So, if you want to invest like Druckenmiller, this is your chance. Here are his top 10 holdings right now (subscription required):

  • Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN)
  • Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX)
  • Facebook (NASDAQ:FB)
  • Workday (NASDAQ:WDAY)
  • Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT)
  • Alphabet (NASDAQ:GOOGL)
  • PayPal (NASDAQ:PYPL)
  • Barrick Gold (NYSE:GOLD)
  • Activision Blizzard (NASDAQ:ATVI)
  • Alibaba (NYSE:BABA)

6 Stocks to Buy as the Coronavirus Changes Medicine

[Tuesday, May 19, 12:24 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

For many Americans, the novel coronavirus is ushering in a new understanding of public health. Consumers are wearing face masks, washing their hands and following new social distancing protocols. At the same time, the pandemic is highlighting just how much the medical world has changed — and will continue to change in the months and years to come.

Inovio Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:INO) developed its vaccine candidate in just three hours. Now, President Donald Trump is ramping up Operation Warp Speed to “deploy” a vaccine across the U.S. by January 2021. And months before most investors caught on to the outbreak, Canada’s BlueDot used an artificial intelligence-powered algorithm to spot a “flu-like outbreak” in China.

According to Axios’ Bryan Walsh, this scientific innovation is just the beginning. As consumers continue to demand next-generation healthcare before the next pandemic, Walsh predicts that gene-editing tech will proliferate, healthcare will merge more with AI and a whole host of other biotech innovations will capture investor and consumer attention.

So, how can you profit from this trend? InvestorPlace’s Ian Cooper rounded up his favorite gene-editing stocks in March, commenting on the excitement this revolution holds. Doctors are touting the potential to reverse blindness and cure HIV, all by “hacking” a patient’s genes. With this in mind, Cooper recommends CRISPR Therapeutics (NASDAQ:CRSP), Editas Medicine (NASDAQ:EDIT) and Intellia Therapeutics (NASDAQ:NTLA).

Plus, InvestorPlace analyst Matt McCall has long been bullish on this futuristic healthcare. Back in September he highlighted Illumina (NASDAQ:ILMN) and Guardant Health (NASDAQ:GH). The former offers genome sequencing products, while the latter specializes in liquid biopsies.

If you’re not sure about all this gene-editing hype, there’s an even easier way to get in on the trend. Ever since Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) signed a deal with Orangetheory Fitness, McCall has been excited about the Apple Watch’s potential. As consumers opt for health-tracking devices, look for those device makers to seriously profit from all the data.

The future of healthcare will be a whole lot more connected, and hopefully a whole lot more profitable, for the sector’s earliest investors.

10 Lithium Stocks to Buy for Post-Pandemic Innovation

[Tuesday, May 19, 11:00 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Innovation drives the market, even in times of chaos. Companies that are embracing remote-work and telemedicine solutions are thriving, while companies stuck in the days of brick-and-mortar retail are just inches away from bankruptcy filings. But there’s a more speculative, and potentially more rewarding, sector of innovation out there right now.

Lithium is a key commodity used in electronics, and it’s really gaining attention thanks to electric vehicles. This year hasn’t been kind to lithium stocks, especially as supply-demand imbalances and the U.S.-China trade war tanked the lithium market.

That might all be about to change. InvestorPlace’s Josh Enomoto is keeping a close eye on geopolitics, and he’s tracking a storm brewing between the United States and China. With an election approaching, Enomoto predicts President Donald Trump will do just about anything to get back in the White House, including pulling away from that country’s lithium supply.

That’s bad news for some companies, but not for the 10 lithium stocks Enomoto is recommending. He’s looking at countries that rely on lithium supplies in Canada, Australia, Argentina and Chile. According to Enomoto, lithium-based tech is the future. As mining strategies improve and prices stabilize, these stocks could seriously shoot for the stars.

Here are his 10 buy recommendations now:

  • Albemarle (NYSE:ALB)
  • Sociedad Quimica y Minera (NYSE:SQM)
  • Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA)
  • Orocobre (OTCMKTS:OROCF)
  • Livent (NYSE:LTHM)
  • Power Metals (OTCMKTS:PWRMF)
  • Lithium Americas (NYSE:LAC)
  • Galaxy Resources (OTCMKTS:GALXF)
  • American Battery Metals (OTCMKTS:ABML)
  • Pilbara (OTCMKTS:PILBF)

Nancy Lazar: Middle America Is the New Emerging Market

[Tuesday, May 19, 10:37 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Nancy Lazar consistently ranks as one of the top economists on Wall Street. She’s racked up accolades from institutional investors, and she’s considered one of the most influential women in U.S. finance. Clearly, she knows what she’s talking about.

And in a new interview with Barron’s Leslie Norton, Lazar talked about how the novel coronavirus is bringing a “regime change” that favors stockpickers. Although she initially downplayed the threat of the pandemic, she quickly adjusted her models and is ready to pick post-crisis winners.

Lazar has identified several key themes for stockpickers. The first is that as a result of the virus, the era of China dominating economic growth is over. In other words, it’s no longer the “top” emerging market. Instead, Lazar thinks Middle America — literally, the center of the United States — is the next key region. With that in mind, she’s looking for companies headquartered in that region.

No, Middle America isn’t the sexiest region. Investors tend to gravitate toward Silicon Valley’s tech offerings, or New York’s bustling finance and startup names. But Lazar has been bullish on Middle America for almost a decade. She’s been confident that one day, manufacturers will return en masse. Plus, as investment dollars flow to the region, smaller companies will be delightful acquisition targets.

One more takeaway. Lazar, like many others, believes consumer trends are likely to change permanently. She’s primarily betting on companies in technology, healthcare and consumer staples categories, as spending shifts to new trends.

So, pull out a map, start doing some research and get betting on Middle America.

Stocks Open Slightly Lower Tuesday After Massive Rally

[Tuesday, May 19, 9:31 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Phew. It looks like bulls are taking a bit of a rest Tuesday morning, after a simply amazing rally in the market on Monday. This break comes as Walmart (NYSE:WMT) and Home Depot (NYSE:HD) report earnings. Plus, investors learned that construction — specifically of single-family homes — dropped 25.4% in April.

There should still be some optimism today, but there’s nothing like Moderna’s (NASDAQ:MRNA) victory so far to lift shares. Are we in store for another rally, or a calm day of trading? Looks like we’ll have to wait and see.

The S&P 500Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite all opened slightly lower Tuesday.

  • The S&P 500 opened lower by 0.22%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average opened lower by 0.32%
  • The Nasdaq Composite opened lower by 0.09

Buy Gilead Stock as the European Union Fast Tracks Sales

[Monday, May 18, 4:35 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

It seems as if the entire stock market forgot about Gilead Sciences (NASDAQ:GILD) in the blink of an eye. Instead, headlines about Moderna (NASDAQ:MRNA) and Sorrento Therapeutics (NASDAQ:SRNE) capture investor attention for a day or two at a time.

However, InvestorPlace’s Bret Kenwell highlighted another major victory for Gilead in his daily column. The European Union is racing to fast track sales of remdesivir, its proposed treatment for the novel coronavirus. The European Medicines Agency has already issued compassionate-use authorization, similar to emergency-use designations granted by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

However, despite a lack of more conclusive data, demand for remdesivir is rising. To appease that demand, the EMA is looking to issue a “conditional marketing authorisation” — which would allow sales of the drug for one year within the EU, even without all the data.

GILD stock didn’t feel the effects of this victory, instead falling by 2% on the day. However, InvestorPlace’s Larry Ramer thinks it’s the perfect time to buy. He wrote on Thursday that good news, including pending action in the EU, is a clear upside catalyst. With this in mind, investors should buy shares before the masses catch on to their potential.

Dow Adds 900+ Points as Investor Optimism Returns

[Monday, May 18, 4:01 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

The sun may not be shining outside my apartment window, but a quick look at the stock market makes the day seem bright. That’s thanks to comments from Federal Reserve Board Chair Jerome Powell, vaccine updates from Moderna (NASDAQ:MRNA) and a nice spike in crude oil prices.

Moderna was certainly a big winner, closing higher by 20%. Peer vaccine makers Novavax (NASDAQ:NVAX) and Vir Biotechnology (NASDAQ:VIR) also soared on the day. Plus, Moderna’s big update even sent consumers stocks like TripAdvisor (NASDAQ:TRIP) higher as investors anticipate what a safe and effective vaccine could mean.

It’s safe to say it was a good day in the markets. The S&P 500Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite each saw gains of more than 2.4%.

  • The S&P 500 closed higher by 3.15%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed higher by 3.85%
  • The Nasdaq Composite closed higher by 2.44%

5 Bank Stocks to Buy on a Federal Reserve Rally

[Monday, May 18, 3:16 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Bank stocks are struggling in 2020, but investors likely are missing the bigger picture. On one hand, cruise operators and movie theater companies are down hard, but that’s because lockdowns and social distancing measures directly impact their business. On the other hand, many experts argue that bank stocks are only suffering because of 2008 flashbacks.

Granted, there’s more to the picture than that. Barron’s Carleton English wrote today that bank profits will continue to be weak, and some dividends are at risk. The big banks already moved away from buyback programs to preserve cash.

Those words of warning aren’t stopping investors on Monday. Comments from Federal Reserve Board Chair Jerome Powell have given renewed confidence to the market, and bank stocks are winning big. Powell clarified that he doesn’t see another Great Depression on the horizon, although the downturn in the market will still be “sharp.”

So, what should investors do? InvestorPlace Markets Analyst Luke Lango maintains that it’s most important to remember 2020 isn’t a repeat of 2008. The financial system is in a better place this time around, and banks face much more regulation than they did in the previous crisis.

Lango has been bullish on the big banks throughout the novel coronavirus-induced downturn. Just last week he recommended buying shares now to benefit from a post-pandemic rebound.

Here are the five names he thinks you should buy:

  • Bank of America (NYSE:BAC)
  • JPMorgan (NYSE:JPM)
  • Wells Fargo (NYSE:WFC)
  • Goldman Sachs (NYSE:GS)
  • Citigroup (NYSE:C)

FedEx Stock Gains as it Tries to Hit Amazon Where it Hurts

[Monday, May 18, 2:49 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) has, without a doubt, been one of the biggest winners in the locked-down world. Consumers are turning to it’s e-commerce site for essentials and impulse purchases, and the company is also benefiting from grocery store, video game and streaming trends.

However, rival FedEx (NYSE:FDX) is no longer playing around. One of the biggest consumer complaints about Amazon is that its one-day and two-day shipping guarantees have fallen by the wayside as it struggles to keep up with demand. Seeing an opening, FedEx just announced a partnership with Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) that has shares up 10% in intraday trading.

According to Bloomberg’s Thomas Black and Dina Bass, the deal will combine Microsoft’s cloud services with FedEx’s shipping expertise. FedEx will get better data on potential delays, and be able to reroute packages as needed to keep shoppers happy. At the same time, Microsoft’s Azure nabs a win, taking a potential customer from Amazon’s AWS.

Plus, FedEx Surround won’t cost consumers any extra. The pilot program is set to launch in summer 2020, and could mean big things for a company struggling to keep up with the pocketbook of Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos.

It’s hard to say if this is a winning proposition in the long term, but it sure sounds good. Keep a close eye on this partnership, and consider picking up FedEx shares here.

Buy Spirit Airlines Stock for the Future of Air Travel

[Monday, May 18, 2:25 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Budget airlines, or low-cost carriers, had a bad rap before the novel coronavirus decimated air travel. Consumers criticized added baggage fees, delayed flights and destinations that weren’t exactly close to hub cities. But Barron’s Darren Fonda writes that these carriers are “leading the pack” in recovery.

In fact, everything that drew criticism before the pandemic could become a catalyst in the new world. For one, consumers may be more willing to spend extra on anything associated with “safety,” like social distancing seats. Business travel is typically associated with Delta Air Lines (NYSE:DAL) and United Airlines (NASDAQ:UAL), but leisure travel is likely to rebound first. Just think about all the companies already promoting “WFH forever” models.

Plus, these budget airlines have leaner operations, as Fonda writes. That could mean it’s easier for them to sustain the added costs of social distancing, like removing middle seats.

With this reality in mind, Spirit Airlines (NYSE:SAVE) is set to be a major post-crisis winner. Shares are up 25% in intraday trading, as new figures from the Transportation Security Administration show travel was down 91% year-over-year for the week ending May 15. That sounds horrible, but it’s an improvement from earlier 96% year-over-year drops.

It’s always nice to know that Wall Street agrees with investors. Evercore ISI analyst Duane Pfennigwerth raised his 12-month price target on shares to $12, and set a “buy” rating today. With a share price just below $10, don’t miss out on some rebound-driven upside in SAVE stock.

7 Stocks to Buy as Electronic Payments Gain Traction

[Monday, May 18, 1:54 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Some future-minded individuals are predicting a complete end to cash payments. Sure, that sounds pretty radical, but it’s unfolding as I write this. Paper money has been targeted as a risky medium — businesses have moved away from accepting cash to stop the spread of the novel coronavirus. Heck, I even paid online for an individual McDonald’s (NYSE:MCD) milkshake this weekend.

It is likely that cash will return, but the pandemic is certainly accelerating the adoption of electronic payment options. That’s why some like InvestorPlace’s Chris Lau see stocks in this space as some of the hottest buys right now.

Lau wrote today that it’s clear consumers are getting more comfortable with electronic payments. Plus, businesses are increasingly embracing these platforms as they struggle to keep their doors open. In all, this is a big win for the payments companies.

Plus, in a post-pandemic world, we won’t all stop whipping out our phones to make payments. With that in mind, here are seven stocks Lau is recommending now:

  • PayPal Holdings (NASDAQ:PYPL)
  • Square (NYSE:SQ)
  • Visa (NYSE:V)
  • Mastercard (NYSE:MA)
  • American Express (NYSE:AXP)
  • Coupa Software (NASDAQ:COUP)
  • Global Payments (NYSE:GPN)

Gear Up and Start Buying Stock in the Big Three Automakers

[Monday, May 18, 1:21 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Not to beat a dead horse, but it’s been a rough year so far for carmakers. Consumer spending dropped, demand dropped and state lockdowns forced production to come to a halt. Year-to-date performances for General Motors (NYSE:GM), Ford (NYSE:F) and Fiat Chrysler (NYSE:FCAU) are ugly.

That’s all changing, and it’s evident in the share prices. GM stock is up more than 10% in intraday trading, and Ford and FCAU shares are up around 8%. Why? Plants are reopening.

According to reporting from Morning Brew, Monday marked massive reopenings at plants across the U.S. Yes, they will be operating at reduced capacity for the near future, and workers will take new safety precautions. A total of 133,000 employees will be back to work by the end of the week.

Granted, renewed production doesn’t mean renewed demand. But, it’s a big step in the right direction. As we’ve previously reported in this blog, the future of transportation could be headed back toward vehicles. Subways, bus systems and ride-hailing services have become symbols of outbreak.

Plus, InvestorPlace’s Joel Baglole wrote last week that investors would be wrong to ignore the upside potential in Ford stock. Ford and its peers have some cash, and reopenings are underway. If it can get through 2020 and tackle projects like electric vehicles, it’s set for massive gains.

Investors should get ready for a rebound, and keep an eye out for new sales figures. As more consumers return to work, it will be important to know how many opt for new cars instead of getting on the train.

8 Vaccine Stocks to Buy for Operation Warp Speed

[Monday, May 18, 12:58 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Vaccine stocks are heating up the stock market today, especially after Moderna (NASDAQ:MRNA) shared its first results from human trials. But there’s an even bigger catalyst lurking behind some of the top names in the race to develop a vaccine for the novel coronavirus.

On Friday, President Donald Trump and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services launched Operation Warp Speed, something the president has likened to the Manhattan Project. As the name suggests, this is a mission to produce and distribute an effective vaccine across the U.S. with “warp speed” — or by January 2021.

As part of the operation, Trump is even calling for the deployment of military trucks and planes, as well as individual soldiers to administer vaccines when the time comes. There are 14 vaccines in the study, and eventually researchers will narrow it to eight, and then even lower. It’s not clear exactly which vaccines are on the short list, but investors could make some informed guesses.

InvestorPlace’s Ian Cooper is obviously hot on Moderna, but he also recently recommended Inovio Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:INO) and BioNTech (NASDAQ:BNTX), thanks to its vaccine partnership with Pfizer (NYSE:PFE).

Beyond that, The Wall Street Journal’s Peter Loftus added Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ), Sanofi (NYSE:SNY) and AstraZeneca (NYSE:AZN) to the list of companies farther along in the raceGlaxoSmithKline (NYSE:GSK), another big-name pharmaceutical, is collaborating with Sanofi to scale up production.

Remember, there are over 100 candidates out there. This list of vaccine stocks combines big pharmaceutical power with manufacturing capability and a little bit of clinical-stage innovation. May the best vaccine — and the most diligent investors — win.

Are You Investing in 5G’s $56 Trillion Upgrade All Wrong?

[Monday, May 18, 12:15 p.m.]
Contributed by Nicholas Stern

It’s no exaggeration to say the breakthroughs made possible by 5G will dwarf the economic impact of the internet.

The next generation of mobility will increase download speeds by 100x. If you’ve experienced any janky or lost connections recently, you’ll appreciate the upgrade.

But 5G means a lot more than faster smart phones.

It makes possible breakthroughs that were previously the stuff of sci-fi fantasy. I’m talking about self-driving cars, remote robotic surgeries, virtual and augmented reality, billions of connected devices known as the internet of things (IOT), telehealth, smart cities and factories, and more.

Add it all up and you’re looking at technological innovations worth more than $56 trillion.

And if anything, Covid-19 has only accelerated 5G’s importance for the future. When your health or your job are literally on the line, faster connections at home become not just a nice feature to have, they turn into a necessity.

The same goes for the factory floor. Indeed, the manufacturing sector has been at the forefront of 5G’s rollout.

According to TechRepublic, wireless connections in factories will grow even faster than fixed-line connections from 2019 to 2030, reaching over 5 million 5G connections by 2025.

Nearly three-quarters of managers and plant directors surveyed by ABI Research said they planned on upgrading their communications networks in the next two years, with more than half saying 4G and 5G are necessary to meeting that goal.

Getting ahead of the trend, Federated Wireless has joined with Amazon’s (NASDAQ:AMZN) Web Services and Microsoft’s (NASDAQ:MSFT) Azure to offer connectivity-as-a-service for businesses setting up 4G and 5G networks for IOT tools.

Again, a post-pandemic world will demand faster, more efficient supply chains and production lines informed with data fed by countless connected sensors. 5G connectivity will enable this shift.

Years from now, we’ll look back at the creation of 5G the way we look back at the buildout of America’s railroads. More importantly, it’s setting up the best chance many people will ever get to make small investments and turn them into life-changing wealth.

But most people are going about it the wrong way. It’s why InvestorPlace analyst Matt McCall recently let people know about a 5G wealth-building opportunity that could be 20 to 30 times larger than the buildout.

Click here to learn more.

Jerome Powell Says Market Won’t See a ‘Great Depression’

[Monday, May 18, 11:40 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Last week, Federal Reserve Board Chair Jerome Powell issued a warning about the economy, and stocks tumbled. This week, it looks like he’s trying to soften that blow. A quick look at the major indices shows that it’s working.

On Sunday, a 60 Minutes interview with Powell brought a little more clarity to his warning. He maintains that we certainly aren’t looking at a V-shaped economy recovery — and that the downturn will be very “sharp.”

But he also made clear that the United States isn’t going to see another Great Depression. Why? Before the market downturn, Powell argues that the financial system and the economy were in good shape. Downward pressures are coming from the novel coronavirus, an external factor.

Although he’s still not rushing toward negative interest rates, he says the Federal Reserve has massive potential through its lending programs to keep the economy from depression. Powell is also pushing for legislators to up stimulus spending.

From the interview:

“In the long run, and even in the medium run, you wouldn’t want to bet against the American economy. This economy will recover. It may take a while. It may take a period of time. It could stretch through the end of next year.”

5 Gambling Stocks to Buy for a Post-Pandemic Jackpot

[Monday, May 18, 11:11 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Live sporting events are mostly on hiatus, and casinos around the world remain closed. That should mean instant death for gambling stocks. Instead, these names are sparkling in the spotlight because of their major rebound potential.

Sure, they face serious headwinds right now, and it’s not clear when those issues will truly fade. But consumers’ urge to gamble hasn’t disappeared. Recent reporting from The Guardian indicates that frequent gamblers are actually betting more as they’re stuck at home.

As these individuals turn to higher-stakes online casino games and slot machines, it’s clear gambling won’t disappear in a post-pandemic world. When casinos and sports events return, casual gamblers will similarly return to the pastime. Frequent gamblers will make the switch back to in-person bets.

This reality is exactly what has InvestorPlace’s David Moadel hot on top gambling stocks now. He wrote this morning that in preparation for a rebound, investors should seek out stocks in the sector with big turnaround potential.

Here are five stocks he’s recommending right now:

  • Las Vegas Sands (NYSE:LVS)
  • Caesars Entertainment (NASDAQ:CZR)
  • Esports Entertainment (NASDAQ:GMBL)
  • Boyd Gaming (NYSE:BYD)
  • Penn National Gaming (NASDAQ:PENN)

Moderna Stock Climbs 25% on Early Trial Results

[Monday, May 18, 10:44 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Investors were in a rough spot after last week. It seemed like the novel coronavirus was destined to weigh on the economy for months to come, and state reopening plans lost their luster. That all changed Monday morning when Moderna (NASDAQ:MRNA) reported its mRNA-1273 vaccine candidate showed promising early results.

Moderna has been testing its vaccine in eight healthy volunteers. Key takeaways from early results are that the vaccine is safe and successfully triggers an immune response. Now, the company is preparing to ramp human trials to deliver a final vaccine as quickly as possible.

Further rounds of study will include two doses of the vaccine, and examine their effects on different age groups. According to its Monday press release, Phase 3 trials could begin as early as July.

As we’ve reported in this blog, a vaccine winner will see serious share-price victory. That’s because many see a vaccine as the key to safely and wholly reopening the United States. With that in mind, MRNA stock is up more than 20% in intraday trading.

Although shares have gained more than 320% in 2020, InvestorPlace’s Ian Cooper still thinks it’s a buy. He wrote Thursday that it’s one of the top biotech stocks to buy right now. Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation’s top infectious disease expert, even called Moderna’s vaccine technology “quite impressive.”

Stocks Surge Higher Monday on Vaccine News

[Monday, May 18, 9:31 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Friday’s rally was unexpected, but it’s carrying over to quite a robust open in the stock market on Monday. News that Moderna’s (NASDAQ:MRNA) vaccine candidate for the novel coronavirus showed promise in early trials is seriously shaking things up.

And that shake up is needed after a gloomy week of trading. After several experts, including Federal Reserve Board Chair Jerome Powell, called for longer-lasting misery, vaccine optimism looks like the perfect cure.

With that in mind, the S&P 500Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite all opened well in the green on Monday.

  • The S&P 500 opened higher by 2.47%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average opened higher by 2.92%
  • The Nasdaq Composite opened higher by 1.71%

Microsoft Looks to Be a Return-to-Work Winner

[Friday, May 15, 4:30 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

In case you’ve been living under a rock, the novel coronavirus is changing everything. We went from rushing to work each morning in crowded offices or kitchens or brick-and-mortar retailers to record layoffs and a lot of working from home. In that noise, work-from-home solutions like Microsoft’s (NASDAQ:MSFT) Teams and Zoom Video (NASDAQ:ZM) became winners.

Now, states are reopening, and many Americans are pushing to reopen businesses. Microsoft is ready to make that pivot, aligning itself as a return-to-work stock. Today, along with UnitedHealth (NYSE:UNH), it announced ProtectWell. According to InvestorPlace’s Bret Kenwell, this was some of the biggest news in the stock market today.

ProtectWell is both an app and a set of workplace protocols to help companies transition back to the office. Unlike proposals from competitors, this app doesn’t involve any contract tracing technology. What it does feature is screening for the novel coronavirus and privacy-focused testing options.

Microsoft and UnitedHealth are big players in their respective industries, and together they should have a lot of power. MSFT shares outperformed the market today, closing higher by 1.5%.

Stocks Flip Morning Losses to Close Friday in the Green

[Friday, May 15, 4:01 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

The stock market looked pretty grim this morning. Retail sales fell 16.4% in April — a record move for that figure. Earlier this week investors heard cautionary tales from famed David Tepper and Federal Reserve Board Chair James Powell. Oh, and yesterday we learned 2.98 million more Americans filed for unemployment benefits.

But it’s almost the weekend. That means investors did their best to turn things around, getting the S&P 500 into positive territory on the day. The move higher comes as Sorrento Therapeutics (NASDAQ:SRNE) closed higher by 160%. No, that’s not a typo.

Fortunately, things were similarly rosy for the Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite. Everyone’s ready for Saturday and nobody wants to get the party started on a bad note.

  • The S&P 500 closed higher by 0.39%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed higher by 0.25%
  • The Nasdaq Composite closed higher by 0.79%

In These ‘Trying Times’ Sprout Social Stock Is a Top Buy

[Friday, May 15, 3:42 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

We’ve all seen the emails. “Company XYZ is here for you in these trying times.” Cute graphics, comforting messages and all sorts of discounted products are making the rounds on branded social media pages. Businesses are working to find themes that resonate with consumers, and ways to capture spending even as it falls at record pace.

According to InvestorPlace Markets Analyst Luke Lango, that’s exactly why Sprout Social (NASDAQ:SPT) stock is a buy right now, and for the next 10 years. No, it’s not a platform for vegans or tree-hugging millennials. It’s a social media management company, and it’s the best of its kind.

Plus, as Lango writes, brands and consumers are grasping onto the digital world as the physical world continues to face pandemic disruptions. SPT stock is up 44% year-to-date, and it just saw its revenue grow 31% year-over-year. Those aren’t numbers to roll your eyes at.

So what’s the deal? Brands essentially have to hop on the social media bandwagon to reach potential customers. Now, they really need to be social media savvy. Some brands are even upping their spending on social media campaigns at a time when the digital advertising world seems bleak.

As more companies opt for social media management, Sprout will win. In the next decade, Lango anticipates 450% upside.

Barclays: Buy PG&E Stock As It Preps to Exit Bankruptcy

[Friday, May 15, 2:22 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

PG&E (NYSE:PCG) filed for bankruptcy protections in early 2019. It faced enormous costs after its equipment caused devastating wildfires in California. Shares have dropped over 70% in the last two years, although they are in the green for 2020.

The company’s fortunes could be changing, and Barclays analysts like its trajectory. If PG&E can exit bankruptcy by June 30, it could participate in a California-based fund to compensate victims of the wildfires. It has been at odds with California Gov. Gavin Newsom, and Utility Dive reported in November 2019 that California mayors wanted to turn the company into a public utility.

Analyst Eric Beaumont thinks this June 30 deadline is reasonable. That’s why he upped his rating to “overweight” from “equal weight” and set a $15 price target. Shares currently trade near $11.

One big question moving forward is how PG&E will raise the cash it needs. But the firm thinks it won’t have to sell more than $9 billion in new shares to reorganize. From there, as Beaumont and his peers expect utilities to improve later in 2020, the future looks brighter.

5 Virtual Reality Stocks to Buy for the Next Virus

[Friday, May 15, 1:56 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

On one hand, there’s surely no one out there eager to start thinking about the next major viral outbreak. On the other hand, investors would be smart to get ahead. Virologists predict animals currently carry 750,000 diseases with the power to infect humans. Planning for the next pandemic will help you profit.

Attention-grabbing articles from AxiosThe Atlantic and The New York Times have speculated our next pandemic will be made better by virtual and augmented reality. Kaitlyn Tiffany writes that augmented-reality filters on Instagram are allowing for a certain digital communal experience made impossible in the physical world by social distancing. Ina Fried writes that virtual-reality headsets will make remote work and learning easier, and more engaging, the next time around.

Why aren’t these technologies more relevant now, as the novel coronavirus continues to change life? Kevin Roose writes that in many ways, the tech just isn’t ready. What is ready is expensive, or cumbersome or it has been out of stock for weeks.

That’s why companies, and investors, should prepare for the next pandemic. On Thursday, Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) announced its purchase of NextVR, a strong indication future products will lean more toward this futuristic technology. In fact, InvestorPlace’s Brad Moon wrote in February that Apple was one of the top five stocks to buy to cash in on this trend.

At the time, he wrote that combined revenue from AR and VR products is set to hit $571.2 billion by 2025. Although Apple is known for existing tech like iPhones and Air Pods, Moon argues that these industry leaders have the power to win in the future. Why? They’ll buy up NextVR and other small firms, and use their market dominance to keep winning.

Here are four other stocks Moon thinks could be AR and VR winners:

  • Facebook (NASDAQ:FB)
  • Sony (NYSE:SNE)
  • Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT)

7 Gold Stocks to Buy to Protect Your Portfolio

[Friday, May 15, 1:25 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

March was a bad month in the markets, and then April saw stocks rocket higher. Against their better judgement, many experts were likely hoping for a V-shaped recovery. Unfortunately, that seems like “wishful thinking” now, writes InvestorPlace analyst Louis Navellier.

We’re just two weeks into May, and things are looking a little rough. Retail sales are still dropping, and Americans are still filing for unemployment benefits. Plus, states’ reopening plans aren’t smooth sailing.

With this in mind, Navellier is recommending gold stocks now. He likes that gold has historically been a top portfolio hedge, and that the current gold supply is lower than usual. While demand continues to rise, you certainly wouldn’t be a fool to follow suit and buy some gold shares now.

Here are Navellier’s seven recommendations:

  • Eldorado Gold (NYSE:EGO)
  • Iamgold (NYSE:IAG)
  • Harmony Gold (NYSE:HMY)
  • Yamana Gold (NYSE:AUY)
  • B2Gold (NYSEMKT:BTG)
  • Drdgold (NYSE:DRD)
  • Kinross Gold (NYSE:KGC)

Tesla Stock Is a Buy as Elon Musk Wins Once Again

[Friday, May 15, 1:00 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

It’s just as easy to hate Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA) CEO Elon Musk as it is to love him. He has fearlessly led his electric vehicle company to rousing success, but he also uses social media much like a diary. One day, he’s worried about the TSLA stock price being too high, the next he’s fighting with legislators from Alameda County — home to his Tesla plant.

In what should have been a stock-driving win, Musk got his way. After threatening to reopen the plant without approval, and challenging police to arrest him first, he got that approval. Now, he just has to ensure certain safety protocol are in place.

TSLA stock is up almost 91% year-to-date, but Musk’s recent victory hasn’t triggered a rally. In fact, shares are down in intraday trading on Friday. Is this a sign it’s time to cash out and run?

InvestorPlace’s Bret Kenwell doesn’t think so. He wrote that of all automotive stocks, Tesla may be the only one to buy now. Yes, its margins are thin, it’s in a capital-intensive business and it’s cyclical. But even in a pandemic Tesla’s shareholders love the company and its leader.

Perhaps that loyalty is all it needs for success.

5 Stocks to Buy for Post-Pandemic Mental Health Demand

[Friday, May 15, 12:13 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Some pandemic investing opportunities feel like victory — like vaccine or treatment stocks. Purchasing shares of a company that could soon have a life-saving drug on its hands is the ultimate win-win scenario. Another pandemic-driven investing opportunity, based on new reporting from Axios’ Miriam Kramer, doesn’t have that same effect.

Yesterday Kramer discussed how the coronavirus was triggering a “crisis” in American mental health. At the end of April, 28% of Americans reported worsening mental health. All this time at home, for some, translates to heightened incidents of sexual and domestic abuse. For others, social distancing policies and stay-at-home orders have amplified conditions like depression and anxiety.

These are sobering thoughts, and Kramer questions how the healthcare system will respond after the pandemic. Will we see a rush toward therapy and prescription drugs? And how long will that rush last?

InvestorPlace’s Josh Enomoto recently made stock recommendations with that question in mind, especially as he anticipates more Americans seeking traditional and non-traditional treatment. Enomoto opted for a “quirky” focus, encouraging investors to buy Champignon Brands (OTCMKTS:SHRMF) and MindMed (OTCMKTS:MMEDF).

These companies represent the cutting-edge research happening in the mental health world. Champignon specializes in psychedelic drugs with a therapeutic focus, researching ketamine and medicinal mushrooms. Similarly, MindMed focuses on the mental health benefits from psychedelics.

But it’s even more likely Americans will seek out traditional mental healthcare. That’s why Teladoc (NYSE:TDOC) looks like a good play, especially as it has been quick to add a variety of medical professionals to its platform. And as Kramer predicts we’ll see an increase in depression and anxiety diagnoses, traditional drugmakers are also a good bet. Consider Pfizer (NYSE:PFE) and Eli Lilly (NYSE:LLY) — the makers of Prozac, Zoloft and Xanax.

Together, these five stocks represent a solid bet on growing demand, and a combination of current and future treatment options.

Don’t Miss the Bullish Opportunity in Applied DNA Stock

[Friday, May 15, 11:18 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Yesterday, it appeared another novel coronavirus superstar was emerging. Applied DNA Sciences (NASDAQ:APDN) shot from a May 13 closing price of $8.89 to close yesterday at $15.21. Why? It received emergency-use authorization from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for its test kit.

But Thursday’s share-price victory didn’t last long. APDN stock is now down 20% in intraday trading, perhaps as news from Sorrento Therapeutics (NASDAQ:SRNE) takes center stage. What’s more likely is that investors panicked over the company’s earnings call Thursday evening.

As not all aspects of Applied DNA’s business qualify as essential in New York, it has seen significant year-over-year drops in revenue, and its net loss also widened by 10%.

Investors shouldn’t be so quick to discount this opportunity. As we previously reported in this blog, there are three types of test kits. This new offerings from Applied DNA is a true diagnostic test — the type of test many consider to be the most expensive and least accessible.

And according to CEO Jim Hayward, APDN’s test has several advantages over other tests with emergency-use authorization. From Hayward:

“Regarding the economics of our COVID-19 diagnostic test, we expect the test to be profitable starting at day 1. We have been careful in choosing our kit components, and have worked closely with our domestic supply chain partners to develop safeguards for continued supply of necessary reagents. We’ve made sure that the manufacturing process for our test kit is as simple as possible, allowing the company to scale with demand.”

Yesterday’s price action reflects a common narrative in our new normal. Looking to the future, remember that testing will continue to ramp. With that in mind, APDN and its test-kit peers could very well be lucrative stocks to buy.

Sorrento Therapeutics Stock Soars on Coronavirus News

[Friday, May 15, 10:41 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Wow. Shares of Sorrento Therapeutics (NASDAQ:SRNE) are almost 90% higher in intraday trading. It’s not even noon yet!

This impressive climb, unsurprisingly, comes on the back of novel coronavirus news. On Friday, the California-based biotech company said that an antibody it’s been developing was successful in blocking the virus, at least in a lab setting. After four days of incubation, it blocked the virus 100% of the time.

As TechCrunch’s Darrell Etherington writes, this news is so inspiring because the antibody could form the basis for a drug cocktail used to treat Covid-19. Sorrento, like many others in the race to develop a treatment, is worried that the virus could mutate, making it hard to pin down an effective drug.

If later-stage trials find the same results, this antibody will be the first in Sorrento’s planned cocktail. It will then use its COVI-SHIELD technology to incorporate several more antibodies, aiming to address fears of mutation. According to a May 8 press release, Sorrento is hoping to develop three antibodies.

Keep a close eye on SRNE stock. While Sorrento isn’t exactly a household name, any company able to deliver a safe and effective treatment will win big. And for today, it’s a reason to be a bullish, especially after a gloomy start to trading.

Stocks Plummet Friday on Grim Retail Sales Report

[Friday, May 15, 9:31 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

It would be easy to imagine that Americans are filling their hours at home with online shopping — and certainly, there is some of that going on. But 36.5 million people have filed for unemployment benefits, and fears of a long-lasting recession are curtailing consumer spending.

Investors got a shocking look at consumer spending levels Friday morning. Retail sales in April fell by 16.4%, worse than the drop in March. Economists were predicting a drop of 12.3% — so it’s safe to say Friday’s surprise really is hurting the market.

Stock futures promptly flipped, after a positive close Thursday. The S&P 500Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite all are opening deep in the red.

  • The S&P 500 opened lower by 0.94%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average opened lower by 0.87%
  • The Nasdaq Composite opened lower by 1.15%

Analysts Are Jumping on the Cisco Stock Bandwagon

[Thursday, May 14, 4:37 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Cisco Systems (NASDAQ:CSCO) reported fiscal third-quarter earnings on Wednesday and analysts loved the results. As InvestorPlace’s Bret Kenwell wrote in his daily column on the stock market, analysts hopped on board the company’s bandwagon with buy ratings and higher price targets.

Revenue of $12 billion represented an 8% year-over-year decrease, while earnings per share of 79 cents increased 1% year-over-year. In a normal quarter these results may not be so rousing, but in this new normal, slight revenue and earnings beats had Wall Street cheering.

Here’s the short list of analysts hopping on board (note that shares closed May 14 at $43.85):

  • Barclays analyst Tim Long set a $50 price target.
  • Citigroup analyst Jim Suva set a $48 price target.
  • Raymond James analyst Simon Leopold set a $49 price target.
  • JPMorgan analyst Samik Chatterjee set a $50 price target.
  • UBS analyst John Roy set a $51 price target.

So, are you ready to follow this list of analysts and buy CSCO stock? InvestorPlace’s Brad Moon is. He wrote at the end of April that accelerated work-from-home trends make Cisco a hot stock, particularly as it’s home to Webex and Duo Security, two solutions made increasingly popular by the novel coronavirus.

Stocks Reverse Course to Close Thursday in the Green

[Thursday, May 14, 4:01 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Are investors getting ready for the weekend, or what? News that 2.98 million more Americans filed for unemployment benefits, combined with Wednesday’s comments from Federal Reserve Board Chair Jerome Powell, had stocks down hard this morning. In early afternoon trading, that all changed.

As we wrote this morning, with so much uncertainty, such a rally is hard to rule out. Crude oil prices are also up on the day, which could be helping drive the market turnaround. Perhaps investors are just looking to end the week on a better note.

Regardless of the reason, it’s a nice relief after several rough days of trading. The S&P 500Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite all closed Thursday in the green.

  • The S&P 500 closed higher by 1.15%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed higher by 1.62%
  • The Nasdaq Composite closed higher by 0.91%

The Bull Case for Beyond Meat Stock Is Getting Meatier

[Thursday, May 14, 3:13 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

We previously reported in this blog that Beyond Meat (NASDAQ:BYND) was getting a serious boost from the novel coronavirus. Consumers were embracing a doomsday prepper mindset and stocking up on plant-based alternatives as grocery stores run out of chicken and beef.

This growth story looks even juicier now. Just take a look at all the catalysts the company has working in its favor, as shares are up almost 80% year-to-date.

On top of the prepper angle, Beyond Meat moved into China through a partnership with Starbucks (NASDAQ:SBUX) at the tail end of April. Now, consumers there can order plant-based beef spicy and sour wrap. It’s long been true that China is the hottest growth market, so this move could bring big things to the leading plant-based meat company.

But what is perhaps the biggest catalyst for BYND stock is also the gloomiest. As The Wall Street Journal’s Kimberly Chin reported earlier in May, sales more than doubled in the past quarter as consumers stocked up in panic. Where’s this interest coming from? It seems like each day we learn more about devastating meat shortages and virus outbreaks at U.S. meat processors.

Beyond Meat isn’t free from criticism, as some investors feel that it has climbed too high, too fast. And others point out that while it is doubling sales, the plant-based meat doesn’t truly rival the traditional meat market.

However, it’s undeniable that Beyond Meat represents something big. As it moves into China’s reopening economy and helps patch the hole in the food supply chain caused by meat shortages, investors should certainly consider BYND stock now.

Credit Suisse: Buy CVS Stock for Its Aetna Acquisition

[Thursday, May 14, 2:43 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Investors have focused on CVS Health (NYSE:CVS) this year, particularly as it sells critical health supplies and over-the-counter medicines. In other words, it’s a convenient stop in pandemic shopping.  InvestorPlace’s Dana Blankenhorn has long been hot on the name, writing in late March about its makeover plans and its decision to offer tests for the novel coronavirus.

But Blankenhorn wasn’t convinced CVS was simply a coronavirus play. He wrote at the time it was a “winner beyond the coronavirus pandemic,” particularly as it moved into managed care with its Aetna acquisition. Today, Wall Street is backing up that argument.

Credit Suisse analyst Erin Wright boosted CVS stock to a “buy” rating, maintaining a $75 price target. Shares currently trade near $62. According to Wright, CVS is a defensive business. But most attractive is its entry — through Aetna — into the world of Medicare Advantage (subscription required).

As the analyst wrote, Medicare Advantage is a fast-growing business. What is MA? It’s where a private health insurer provides Medicare benefits. Blankenhorn writes that CVS’ entry into this space is what differentiates it from Walgreens (NASDAQ:WBA) and makes it a competitor with UnitedHealth (NYSE:UNH). InvestorPlace’s Mark Hake writes that this deal has also made CVS more of a go-to pharmacy, and CVS has recorded some notable changes in its prescription filling.

While the pandemic has thrust CVS to the forefront of consumer thought, the stock is likely to be a winner in a whole new era of healthcare.

12 Stocks to Buy for Better-Than-Expected Earnings

[Thursday, May 14, 2:10 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Goldman Sachs derivatives strategist John Marshall has a wake-up call for investors. In a post-pandemic world, historical earnings won’t be accurate predictors of future earnings. But when will Wall Street catch up with this reality?

According to Barron’s Steven Sears, Marshall’s message isn’t cause for panic. Instead, see it as an opportunity to profit. If Wall Street continues to underappreciate newly powerful companies, investors who see through low estimates can score big.

Still don’t get it? Just think about all of the trends that the novel coronavirus is accelerating. Just a few weeks ago, Wall Street wasn’t nearly as hot on work-from-home plays or consumer staples. How then will analysts be able to accurately predict earnings when things settle?

The Goldman strategist takes it a bit further, listing 12 stocks he thinks are buys now. He argues that these names are all set to beat estimates in a big way. Here’s what he’s watching:

  • Allstate (NYSE:ALL)
  • Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS)
  • Baxter International (NYSE:BAX)
  • Iqvia Holdings (NYSE:IQV)
  • Boeing (NYSE:BA)
  • Parker-Hannifin (NYSE:PH)
  • United Rentals (NYSE:URI)
  • Whirlpool (NYSE:WHR)
  • Peloton Interactive (NASDAQ:PTON)
  • T-Mobile (NASDAQ:TMUS)
  • Twitter (NYSE:TWTR)
  • Western Digital (NASDAQ:WDC)

5 High-Quality Stocks to Buy Under $10

[Thursday, May 14, 1:46 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Investors always love cheap stocks — and can you blame them? Imagine buying shares for $2, $3 or even $5 and watching them skyrocket to $10, $20 or even $50. That would be a huge win, and it’s why we look for cheap stocks under $10 each week.

During a pandemic, it’s not surprising that cheap stocks are even more popular. A market-wide selloff earlier in March created a lot of discount buys. However, the selloff also proved that some stocks simply aren’t resilient enough for a turbulent market.

So how do you know which cheap stocks actually have any potential?

That’s where InvestorPlace’s David Moadel comes in. Today, he rounded up five high-quality companies with cheap share prices. Here’s what he’s watching now:

  • Nokia (NYSE:NOK)
  • Nio (NYSE:NIO)
  • Esports Entertainment Group (NASDAQ:GMBL)
  • U.S. Energy (NASDAQ:USEG)
  • U.S. Auto Parts Network (NASDAQ:PRTS)

Follow the Insiders and Buy Harley-Davidson Stock

[Thursday, May 14, 12:57 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

It’s often a good sign when a company’s insiders start buying up shares. Fidelity’s Peter Lynch has made that idea famous. He said that insiders could sell shares for any reason. But there’s only one reason he said insiders would buy shares — they think the price will go up.

With that time-tested advice in mind, let’s turn to Harley-Davidson (NYSE:HOG) stock. As InvestorPlace’s Ian Bezek wrote in late April, HOG shares could certainly benefit from additional stimulus money. It’s an iconic company that almost all consumers are familiar with. It also has a particular level of brand loyalty.

Unfortunately, though, most consumers probably aren’t buying motorcycles during the novel coronavirus pandemic. “Fun” purchases like Harley-Davidson’s bikes have been put on the back burner in favor of essentials like health supplies and food. And that honestly makes sense.

For HOG stock, that logic has made 2020 an ugly year. Shares are down about 50% year-to-date. Clearly the motorcycle company faces quite a few hurdles.

But those hurdles aren’t stopping CEO Jochen Zeitz from giving investors a bullish angle. He officially became CEO on May 7, and on May 8 he spent $2.1 million for almost 98,000 shares. That’s the first insider purchase Harley-Davidson has seen since 2017.

There’s always more than a simple purchase to consider when evaluating insider buying, but Argus Research analyst David Coleman likes what he sees. He upped his rating on HOG stock to “buy” and gave it a $30 price target. Shares currently trade just below $19.

As Barron’s Bill Alpert writes, Coleman likes Harley-Davidson because he’s confident its strategic plan will help it survive the crisis. Once it does, he says the company’s fortunes will rebound next year to hit $4.1 billion in sales and earnings per share of $3.35.

There’s nothing like riding off into the sunset with a nice purchase of Harley-Davidson stock.

Europe’s Big Reason to Be Bullish on Travel Stocks

[Thursday, May 14, 11:21 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

According to the team from Morning Brew, the European summer vacation could be a reality this summer, depending on your country of origin and your desired destination.

That’s right, in an effort to salvage tourism-dependent economies, the European Union rolled out its plan to allow summer travel on Wednesday. Health and safety measures are a priority, and it’s not clear whether all EU countries will hop on board the plan. For now, it looks like Austria and Germany plan to partially reopen their shared border tomorrow. Other countries are slated to follow suit over the coming weeks.

Greece, another country devastated economically, supports allowing travel between EU countries starting June 15, as long as there is a plan to test travelers for the novel coronavirus in place.

As Morning Brew highlights, the plan will likely only allow European travel for EU countries. Travelers from places like the United States may not be allowed, at least for a few more weeks. But this bold move could be exactly what investors are looking for.

InvestorPlace’s Will Ashworth wrote at the end of April that travel stocks had been some of the worst performers in 2020. That makes a ton of sense. Cruise ships became a symbol of mass outbreak, and air travel fell to rock-bottom levels. It’s hard to backpack through Europe when you’re under a stay-at-home order that bans non-essential movement.

But Ashworth was surprisingly bullish on travel stocks, even then. He wrote that over the next decade, top names in the sector should see massive gains. Investors who get in at cheap prices will see handsome rewards. In other words, buying a battered travel stock now could help you pay for your European vacation when lockdowns fully lift.

Here’s a look at seven travel stocks Ashworth is recommending now:

  • Royal Caribbean (NYSE:RCL)
  • Southwest Air Lines (NYSE:LUV)
  • Estee Lauder (NYSE:EL)
  • Hilton Hotels (NYSE:HLT)
  • MGM Resorts International (NYSE:MGM)
  • Booking Holdings (NASDAQ:BKNG)

6 Vanguard ETFs to Buy to Weather the Coronavirus Storm

[Thursday, May 14, 10:22 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

InvestorPlace analyst Neil George has been surviving — and thriving — in market crises since 1987. Through his work, he’s navigated the dot-com crash, the SARS outbreak in China and the Great Recession. Now, he’s using his skills to help investors survive the crisis caused by the novel coronavirus.

He often looks at individual stocks and bonds, but today he took a deep dive into Vanguard ETFs. According to George, the Vanguard fund family is one of the best. And the sectors he chose ETFs from are perfect to help investors actually profit despite the chaos. That’s one of the fundamental things he looks for in his Profitable Investing model portfolios.

So if you’re looking to invest in solid ETFs through a qualified retirement account, or you just like the opportunities that these funds present, Neil George has your back. He’s looking at sectors like utilities, and even real estate investment trusts, to find opportunity.

Here are six Vanguard ETFs that he’s recommending now:

  • High Dividend Yield ETF (NYSEARCA:VYM)
  • Real Estate ETF (NYSEARCA:VNQ)
  • Utilities ETF (NYSEARCA:VPU)
  • Information Technology ETF (NYSEARCA:VGT)
  • Intermediate-Term Corporate Bond ETF (NASDAQ:VCIT)
  • Tax-Exempt Bond ETF (NYSEARCA:VTEB)

Buy Cloud Computing Stocks to Survive the Recession

[Thursday, May 14, 10:01 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Don’t let fears about the state of the economy keep you from profiting now. Instead, look to areas with big growth potential that are supported by massive, accelerating trends. InvestorPlace analyst Louis Navellier is doing just that — and he’s recommending cloud computing stocks right now.

He wrote yesterday that cloud computing stocks are perfect recession-proof plays “hiding in plain sight.” How often do you think about the technology behind the TikTok videos you watch, the video calls you schedule or the photos you share to keep in touch with your friends? Well, it’s time you start thinking.

As the novel coronavirus has thrust so much of our world online, cloud computing technology is increasingly important. Plus, Navellier writes that this trend is only accelerating. Just look at how successful companies like Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) and Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) are.

So where should you look? Navellier has been recommending ServiceNow (NYSE:NOW) in his Growth Investor portfolio since July 2018, and it’s since gained 100%. Clearly you don’t want to miss out on this cloud computing trend.

Read more of Navellier’s thoughts on this technology, and what’s coming next, here.

Stocks Slip Thursday on New Jobless Reports

[Thursday, May 14, 9:31 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Is it really Thursday again already? Looks like it. And it also looks like it has been a couple of rough days for the market. This morning, investors learned that another 2.98 million Americans had filed for unemployment benefits, bringing the novel coronavirus total above 36 million.

This number hasn’t always had a market-moving impact, but stocks are slipping lower Thursday. Perhaps that’s because investors weren’t done digesting comments yesterday from Federal Reserve Board Chair Jerome Powell and legendary investors like Stanley Druckenmiller and David Tepper.

With as much uncertainty in the world as there is, Thursday could still see a rally. But for now, the S&P 500Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite are all opening in the red.

  • The S&P 500 opened lower by 1%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average opened lower by 0.99%
  • The Nasdaq Composite opened lower by 0.84%

Dow Gives Back 500+ Points on Renewed Virus Fears

[Wednesday, May 13, 4:01 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Wednesday’s trading was yet another example of just how divided the nation is over the novel coronavirus — and how unpredictable the stock market is.

States continue to reopen, and headlines cheered Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis’ welcoming of professionals sports. This gives fans, networks and hard-hit teams something to look forward to. At the same time, Federal Reserve Board Chair Jerome Powell targeted “premature” reopenings with warnings of suffering and long-term pain.

One day the market focuses on the positives, like the return of professionals sports. The next day, fears over the novel coronavirus dominate. Wednesday saw the latter. The S&P 500Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite all closed deep in the red.

  • The S&P 500 closed lower by 1.75%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed lower by 2.17%
  • The Nasdaq Composite closed lower by 1.55%

Investors Support Sanofi Stock on U.S. Vaccine Promise

[Wednesday, May 13, 3:46 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Paris-based Sanofi (NYSE:SNY) isn’t rocketing higher in the market Wednesday, but it is outperforming the major indices. Shares are down just 0.2% in intraday trading, while the S&P 500 is down 2.2%.

It turns out investors are always willing to play a game of “I’ll scratch your back if you scratch mine.” What do I mean? Well, the United States was the first country to fund Sanofi’s vaccine candidate for the novel coronavirus. Now partnered with GlaxoSmithKline (NYSE:GSK), it hopes to produce at least 600 million doses each year.

According to a Bloomberg report, Sanofi CEO Paul Hudson is disappointed with the lack of support from European nations, driving his Wednesday announcement. Perhaps to spark some funding competition, he shared that the U.S. is currently entitled to the largest pre-order of doses. Granted, the U.S. may only beat out other countries by a few days or a few weeks.

Keep a close eye on Sanofi shares. It’s likely broader market influences, like early comments from Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell, are keeping the announcement from having a better effect. Tomorrow could bring more gains as Sanofi ups its bullish appeal amid the pandemic.

Buy PepsiCo Stock As Snacks Go Direct to Consumers

[Wednesday, May 13, 2:32 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

One theme that we have reported on frequently in this column is the power of snack foods amid the novel coronavirus outbreak. Consumers are stocking up on Oreo cookies with as much aggression as they’re hoarding meat or face masks. That’s meant good things for food stocks with a strong grocery store hook. For investors, it has been a chance to profit on easy, family friendly business models.

Now, PepsiCo (NASDAQ:PEP) is looking to get in on the snack surge. According to reporting from Retail Brew, the company is rolling out two direct-to-consumer channels to embrace “blanket fort life.” Through and, shoppers can buy both snack and drink bundles and individual Frito Lay chip products.

This makes a lot of sense, and it shows PepsiCo’s ability to innovate quickly. While grocery store snacks are hot, the company missed out on e-commerce opportunities. If consumers plan on social distancing for several more weeks, it’s likely they’ll be more comfortable buying comfort food online.

Plus, as we reported earlier today, PepsiCo is taking big moves in the digital advertising space, even as it backs away from long-standing network campaigns. The company was the first to get in on a new partnership between The Trade Desk (NASDAQ:TTD) and TikTok, reaching consumers in the Asia-Pacific region with a chip-focused campaign.

It’s important for companies like PepsiCo to have direct reach to consumers, both through e-commerce and innovative advertising. InvestorPlace’s Josh Enomoto wrote yesterday that PEP is one of the top stocks benefitting from virus tailwinds. Why? Cheap, comforting snacks like soda and chips are often recession-resistant and should continue to benefit in 2020 and beyond.

12 Stocks to Buy That Could Be Takeover Targets

[Wednesday, May 13, 2:11 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

At the beginning of the pandemic, Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren and New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez called for a temporary ban on big corporate mergers. Their logic? Mergers serve to boost the economic power of large corporations while smaller players suffer the effects of the outbreak.

Undeterred by the proposal, rumors of a tie-up between Uber (NYSE:UBER) and Grubhub (NYSE:GRUB) began swirling yesterday. Many investors think a deal would make sense — it would help consolidate the food delivery industry, and help Uber as its ride-hailing business suffers.

But this deal represents a lot. For one, it stands in stark contrast to several deals that failed as a result of the novel coronavirus. The Uber-Grubhub opportunity also is a reminder to investors that takeover bids can be great buying opportunities.

With that in mind, Barron’s compiled a list of 12 other stocks to watch for potential takeovers. Here’s what you should be watching now:

  • Steel Dynamics (NASDAQ:STLD)
  • L Brands (NYSE:LB)
  • Moog (NYSE:MOG.A)
  • Yelp (NYSE:YELP)
  • Etsy (NASDAQ:ETSY)
  • Splunk (NASDAQ:SPLK)
  • Pure Storage (NYSE:PTSG)
  • Corteva (NYSE:CTVA)
  • Reliance Steel (NYSE:RS)
  • Flowserve (NYSE:FLS)
  • Woodward (NASDAQ:WWD)

EverQuote Stock Is Set to Be a Coronavirus Winner

[Wednesday, May 13, 1:54 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

One thing that is undeniably true is that the novel coronavirus made the online world much more appealing. Heck, I even convinced my grandmother to try out a Zoom Video (NASDAQ:ZM) call a few weekends ago, and she loved it. Now she’s a videoconferencing pro.

Consumers are turning to online shopping for essentials, groceries and even hair products while salons remain closed in many states. But InvestorPlace Markets Analyst Luke Lango is bullish on another sector that’s headed to the web.

Data suggests that insurance companies — long driven by in-person policy sales — are embracing an online model. According to Canadian Underwriter, this trend started before the pandemic. Insurance markets think Generation Z shoppers will prefer online policy sales because online shopping is associated with brand loyalty, refunds and accessible product information.

Lango thinks EverQuote (NASDAQ:EVER) stock is set to seriously benefit from this trend, especially as the pandemic forces consumers to turn online for all sorts of purchases. His new modeling estimates a share price over $100 within just a few years, and earnings per share of $3 by 2025.

So what exactly is EverQuote? Like Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) brought shopping online and Expedia (NASDAQ:EXPE) brought the travel industry online, Lango sees EverQuote leading the way for insurance. That’s because it’s a top online marketplace for insurance policies.

Need another reason to be bullish on EverQuote stock? Its first-quarter earnings showed revenue up 56% year-over-year and the company raised its full-year guidance. That’s impressive.

Don’t Ignore the Hidden Potential in Gilead’s Generics Plan

[Wednesday, May 13, 1:20 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Have investors soured on Gilead Sciences (NASDAQ:GILD) stock? Over the last few weeks it has been a market leader. Good news for its novel coronavirus candidate remdesivir drove whole indices up. Bad news took them down, hard. But now Gilead can’t seem to win back favor.

On Wednesday, Gilead announced that it now has five licensing agreements with generic drug manufacturers. When I heard the news, I assumed this would have GILD shares higher in intraday trading. These manufacturing agreements will allow remdesivir to reach 127 countries, including many low-income and middle-income nations. Plus, plans to scale up manufacturing to that degree seem like a bullish indication of remdesivir’s potential.

Instead, Gilead is down with the market, to the tune of 0.4%.

According to BioPharma Dive’s Jacob Bell, some of the concern comes from advocacy groups like Public Citizen, which question how many low-income individuals these agreements will help. These groups say half the world’s population lives outside of the included countries.

This is an extremely valid point, but is it the sole reason investors aren’t cheering the news? While advocacy groups help shape the philanthropic reach of remdesivir, don’t ignore the bullish messaging here. Investors also shouldn’t ignore the potential coming to generic drug makers.

If remdesivir gets the green light, Mylan (NASDAQ:MYL), Hetero LabsJubilant Life Sciences and Ferozsons Laboratories stand to benefit from associations with the life-saving drug.

InvestorPlace’s Larry Ramer agrees. He wrote today that GILD stock is set to prove the bears wrong, and that it’s time to see the blockbuster potential in remdesivir. Despite Gilead’s choice to donate thousands of doses, he still sees a chance for $3.4 billion in sales in 2020. A coronavirus cure and $3.4 billion? That’s not something to scoff at.

Buy The Trade Desk Stock for Its TikTok Partnership

[Wednesday, May 13, 12:36 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

One of my favorite quarantine habits involves getting comfy, grabbing my tablet and watching hours of short videos on TikTok. If you haven’t heard of it, it’s a social media platform from China’s ByteDance. It features short-form video content, often with dance challenges, short comedy bits or cute pets.

TikTok is taking the world by storm. The Verge’s Ashley Carman reported in April that the platform surpassed 2 billion downloads, and much of its growth came in the first quarter as people were stuck at home. It is simply an inspiring growth story.

Some experts warn that ByteDance is threatening the dominance of rival Tencent (OTCMKTS:TCEHY) which similarly invests in social media, online gaming and entertainment. And while ByteDance remains private, there is speculation an IPO is just around the corner.

If you still don’t get TikTok’s potential, take this reporting from Axios’ Shane Shavitsky. Tweens and teens on the app have a lot of sway in “vaulting” songs to the top of the Billboard charts. Just this week, Doja Cat’s “Say So” earned a No. 1 ranking, after a 17-year-old user created a viral dance. This business model is so solid that Pitchfork’s Alphonse Pierre says Drake’s “Toosie Slide” was a calculated move to succeed on TikTok.

Now, hopefully you see what I mean. For individual investors, there’s a great way to buy into this massive opportunity. The Trade Desk (NASDAQ:TTD) — which is a success story in its own right — recently launched a partnership with TikTok to get ad clients easy access to the platform. The new offering launched in Thailand, led by a campaign from PepsiCo (NASDAQ:PEP). Just like connected TV boosts the success of TTD stock, TikTok should be a major catalyst.

TikTok users have a lot of consumer power, and The Trade Desk is a great play on the future of digital advertising. That’s why InvestorPlace Markets Analyst Luke Lango says TTD stock is one of the top stocks to invest in for a “post-coronavirus whipsaw.” With a new partnership under its belt, it’s too good to ignore here.

7 Stocks to Buy That Have Strong Upside Potential

[Wednesday, May 13, 11:41 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Just a few weeks ago, finding a stock that was in the green year-to-date was like winning the lottery. Now, though, the S&P 500 is far off its 2020 lows, and many stocks are flaunting eye-grabbing gains. Does that mean there are no more bargain opportunities for bottom-fishing investors?

No. InvestorPlace’s Ian Bezek wrote today that if investors don’t see bargains right now, they’re not looking in the right place. Almost 100 companies in the S&P 500 are still down more than 40%. Talk about opportunity.

With that in mind, here are seven stocks he’s recommending now:

  • Anheuser-Busch InBev (NYSE:BUD)
  • Tyson Foods (NYSE:TSN)
  • General Electric (NYSE:GE)
  • Altria (NYSE:MO)
  • Nordstrom (NYSE:JWN)
  • Boston Properties (NYSE:BXP)
  • Sysco (NYSE:SYY)

Bill Miller: A Vaccine Will Trigger an Airline Stock Rally

[Wednesday, May 13, 11:10 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Airline stocks have had a rough year, and investors like Warren Buffett are kissing the sector goodbye. Many predict that demand will suffer in the long term, especially as consumers adopt new attitudes toward hygiene and remote work.

But Bill Miller, the legendary investor behind Miller Value Partners, has a strong counter to that argument. He sees a bet against airlines as a bet against the development of a novel coronavirus vaccine (subscription required):

“If you don’t own the airlines, then you’re making a bet against the vaccine. People love flying and don’t worry about catching polio or smallpox, if there is a vaccine. … If there is a vaccine, that will eliminate all the issues people have about flying and these [stocks] will come back very, very quickly.”

Plus, Miller thinks all the bad news about air travel is already priced into airline stocks. That’s why he is maintaining stakes in Delta Air Lines (NYSE:DAL), United Airlines (NASDAQ:UAL) and American Airlines (NASDAQ:AAL). To be fair, he doesn’t snub Buffett for making a decision to sell. He just sees a great opportunity for value investors in the sky.

Just this morning, InvestorPlace’s Chris Lau wrote in agreement. He says that although airline stocks are a bit of a gamble, American Airlines has a huge margin of safety. Lau thinks AAL stock has 80% of upside ahead. That’s a great reason to pick up shares now.

Don’t Miss Out on the Sportsbook ‘Gold Rush’

[Wednesday, May 13, 10:49 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Let’s get a few things straight. Live sports are on a hiatus, at least for the most part, and ESPN is left to broadcast game reruns and marble races. As Axios’ Kendall Baker writes, even when live sports do return, America will see a “no-fans era” in stadiums.

The data backs that up. A recent poll found that only 24% of respondents are “very likely” or “somewhat likely” to attend a live game as soon as restrictions are lifted. Why? Americans want a vaccine for the novel coronavirus first.

Those combined points paint a pretty awful picture for the sports world. But at the same time, sportsbook companies — companies that accept bets in retail locations or online — are forging ahead. DraftKings (NASDAQ:DKNG) stock has been incredibly hot in recent weeks, and it’s up 4% in intraday trading. Turns out famous investor George Soros is also bullish on the company.

DraftKings, FanDuel and Penn National Gaming (NASDAQ:PENN) are racing to attract bettors despite the lack of live sports. And to an extent, it’s working. The companies saw a record number of wagers for the NFL virtual draft in April, and MarketWatch’s Weston Blasi writes that virtual NASCAR races and League of Legends games are upping the stakes.

This odd reality makes DKNG and PENN surprising pandemic options for investors to consider. DKNG shares are up 156% year-to-date, while PENN shares are down 30%. Is either stock a good buy now?

InvestorPlace analyst Matt McCall thinks the long-term picture is extremely bullish for DraftKings, so if you’ve already bought shares then you’re in luck. If you’re still on the sidelines, he recommends waiting for a pullback — it’s clear DKNG has already climbed pretty far in 2020. McCall feels similarly about Penn National Gaming, which has a stake in Barstool Sports. It’s a long-term winner, but the road ahead could be tough as casinos reopen.

In short, sportsbook operators are surprisingly resilient amid a pandemic. DKNG and PENN represent entry to a huge market opportunity, and they’ll be stocks to buy on a near-term pullback, if not now.

Stocks Cut Morning Gains After Fed Remarks

[Wednesday, May 13, 9:31 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Stock futures were trending higher Wednesday, at least until Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell gave some prepared remarks on the state of the economy. Unsurprisingly, Powell doesn’t see everything as rosy, and in fact cited several key points that could make full economic recovery take even longer.

As for his buddies on Capitol Hill, Powell is urging for more fiscal support. He calls out those with “the power to tax and spend” to help boost the economy, even if such measures would be costly. His remarks also come as Republicans and Democrats continue to debate another round of stimulus funding.

His message wasn’t apocalyptic, but no one likes thinking about a long recovery. The S&P 500Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite all dramatically flipped into the red.

  • The S&P 500 opened lower by 2.05%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average opened lower by 0.41%
  • The Nasdaq Composite opened lower by 2.06%

Snap Up Uber and Grubhub Stock if the Rumors Are True

[Tuesday, May 12, 4:37 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

InvestorPlace’s Bret Kenwell touched on news that had the stock market in an uproar Tuesday in his daily column. According to The Wall Street Journal’s Cara Lombardo, Uber (NYSE:UBER) is looking to take over food delivery competitor Grubhub (NYSE:GRUB) in an all-stock deal.

Grubhub has not confirmed or denied the rumors, but shares closed higher by 29% today. This comes as consumers turn en masse to restaurant delivery, as dine-in options remain closed in almost all states. Plus, Uber has seen a massive decline in its main ride-hailing business, leading it to focus more heavily on its Uber Eats.

Boy, that’s some news. Kenwell wrote that such a deal wouldn’t be surprising. Grubhub executives also hinted that consolidation in the food delivery industry “makes sense.”

InvestorPlace Markets Analyst Luke Lango loves the sound of this deal. He wrote that Grubhub stock is now a “scorching-hot buy” on the rumors. If the deal goes through — which Lango thinks it will — both Uber and Grubhub are stocks to buy.

Stocks Close Lower Tuesday Despite Morning Push

[Tuesday, May 12, 4:01 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

This morning, we reported that investors were seemingly ignoring warnings from Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation’s top infectious disease expert. But perhaps that changed, as stocks reversed course and headed lower. Even Vice President Mike Pence will now isolate himself, as his spokeswoman tested positive for the novel coronavirus.

Across the U.S. businesses continue to reopen. A big problem is the lack of agreement. President Donald Trump, state governors, CEOs and public health experts can’t seem to form a unified plan.

If Fauci’s warnings hold true, states rushing to reopen could be in for “suffering” in the near future. With that in mind, the S&P 500Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite all headed into the red to close the day.

  • The S&P 500 closed lower by 2.05%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed lower by 1.89%
  • The Nasdaq Composite closed lower by 2.06%

Tilray Stock Looks Like a Buy as It Navigates the Pandemic

[Tuesday, May 12, 3:32 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Canada’s cannabis darling Tilray (NASDAQ:TLRY) has had a rough year, just like many other cannabis stocks. Shares are down more than 55% year-to-date, and 85% over the last 12 months. Many investors were hoping a Monday night earnings report would turn things around. Unfortunately, shares are down 7.5% in intraday trading.

But not all investing experts are selling Tilray stock. MarketWatch’s Max Cherney wrote Tuesday that the novel coronavirus has not actually hurt the company’s operations. And, digging through the results, there may even be room for optimism.

For the first time ever, Tilray saw higher sales of medical cannabis abroad than at home in Canada. Overall, the pot producer did see sales increases in March and April over January and February. Many experts predict consumers will turn to marijuana while they are stuck at home.

Despite these results, or perhaps because of them, InvestorPlace’s Nicolas Chahine remains bullish on Tilray stock. He wrote today that shares will once again surpass $11, although the road ahead isn’t easy. What’s driving his argument? He sees higher international sales as a sign Tilray is expanding. The pandemic is keeping this success under the radar, but it’s not something to ignore.

As Chahine writes, look for new legislation in the U.S. and abroad. Anything that can help Tilray move forward is a good sign for cannabis bulls, and for Tilray stock.

4 Stocks to Buy With Major Fund Manager Support

[Tuesday, May 12, 3:08 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

One great way to get stock ideas is through looking at what top fund managers are buying. That’s exactly what Morningstar’s Susan Dziubinski did, working with managers from Diamond Hill and Dodge & Cox to discover which consumer stocks are trending right now.

Like some of Dziubinski’s other picks, her four-stock list focuses on consumer plays. Two names on her list focus on the increasing popularity of snack foods while consumers are stuck at home. Another is a bet on a rebound in the travel industry.

What they all have in common is that fund managers are buying up shares. Here are the four names Dziubinski is watching now:

  • Cognizant Technology Solutions (NASDAQ:CTSH)
  • Kellogg (NYSE:K)
  • Mondelez (NASDAQ:MDLZ)
  • Booking Holdings (NASDAQ:BKNG)

7 Tech Stocks to Buy That Go Beyond Videoconferencing

[Tuesday, May 12, 2:46 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Tech stocks have been making waves recently, but as InvestorPlace’s Chris Lau writes, investors have mostly focused on stocks benefiting from remote work trends. Overlooking other tech megatrends, though, could mean forgoing serious profits.

Lau is bullish on big trends like artificial intelligence and 5G — and for good reason. Although the novel coronavirus has dampened international hype around those trends, they aren’t going anywhere. In fact, the pandemic is likely accelerating these trends. Ignoring them is a great way to lose money.

InvestorPlace also spoke with Dirk Hackbarth, a professor of finance at Boston University. One thing Hackbarth highlighted is that while American companies have historically led these megatrends, it’s time for investors to take Chinese companies seriously.

That’s especially true as China’s economy appears to be rebounding faster. From Hackbarth:

“To the extent that China’s economy may rebound before the U.S. reaches its trough this year, it will provide another advantage for Chinese firms, such as Alibaba and Baidu, to better compete with the likes of Microsoft and Alphabet.”

So, while you’re looking for the latest opportunity in videoconferencing, make sure to keep an open mind. Other tech trends, especially led by Chinese companies, represent major potential.

Here are seven tech stocks Lau is watching now:

  •  Facebook (NASDAQ:FB)
  • Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN)
  • Alibaba (NYSE:BABA)
  • Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT)
  • Intel (NASDAQ:INTC)
  • Logitech (NASDAQ:LOGI)
  • Qualcomm (NASDAQ:QCOM)

Buy Fastenal Stock for Protective Equipment Potential

[Tuesday, May 12, 2:13 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Fastenal (NASDAQ:FAST) is likely not a stock that investors think about everyday. The company distributes safety equipment, fasteners and other industrial products as part of the wholesale supply chain. Its clients include construction businesses, food processors and local governments.

Thanks to the novel coronavirus, Fastenal is getting its time in the spotlight. Sales of its safety equipment were up 120% year-over-year in April, and FAST stock is up about 7% for the year. CFO Holden Lewis said that “surges” in safety equipment sales were certainly responsible for its performance.

According to Industrial Distribution, these safety equipment sales are changing the game, especially as sales of its fastener products continue to hurt. Fastenal saw 11,000 accounts make safety purchases in April that had not made similar purchases since October 2019.

But beyond the headlines, there’s a bigger opportunity. Fastenal is an otherwise boring company that doesn’t usually hold conference calls for its sales numbers. Lewis’ insight into the sales is important. He says one customer bought “back-to-work” kits for employees, filled with masks, temperature gauges and hand sanitizer. This is the new normal, and Fastenal is set to win.

More companies will ramp orders of safety equipment as they bring employees back to work, and similar kits will be making the rounds at all sorts of factories. Plus, once those factories reopen, sales of Fastenal’s other products should gradually return to normal.

5 Streaming Stocks to Buy as Social Distancing Continues

[Tuesday, May 12, 1:26 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Americans are entering a new normal, and they have an intense fear of germs.

That fact, along with a series of recent reports, bodes well for streaming stocks. Consumers ramped up their TV watching early on, but as they continue to stay at home, their new streaming accounts and favorite shows won’t disappear.

Plus, cord-cutting trends are only accelerating. Research firm MoffettNathanson reported that as pay TV subscriptions fell by 1.8 million in the first quarter, the state of cable TV returned to levels not seen since 1995. Clearly, as consumers up their TV time, they’re not choosing new cable packages.

Granted, MoffettNathanson’s report also includes businesses and restaurants that have canceled cable subscriptions. But other reporting from Axios’ Sara Fischer backs up the case for streaming stocks. She writes that traditional TV companies are also struggling to move forward with the fall season. It’s hard for networks to sell marketers if they don’t know what shows they can realistically produce.

On the other hand, streaming platforms benefit from deep archives of fan-favorite shows. With this in mind, consider streaming stocks a great way to play a phased economy reopening. That’s one of the reasons InvestorPlace Markets Analyst Luke Lango is so bullish on the space. He recently wrote that the novel coronavirus is accelerating the shift from traditional TV to streaming TV at record pace.

Here are five names he recommended at the end of April:

  • Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX)
  • Disney (NYSE:DIS)
  • Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN)
  • AT&T (NYSE:T)
  • Roku (NASDAQ:ROKU)

Novavax Stock Soars 60% on Vaccine Funding

[Tuesday, May 12, 12:45 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Novavax (NASDAQ:NVAX) got up on the right side of the bed this morning. In an early press release, the vaccine specialist announced it had received an additional $384 million from the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI). This money will help the company in its fight to develop a novel coronavirus vaccine. Earlier in 2020, it received $4 million from the same group.

Boy, investors like what they see. NVAX stock is up 68% in intraday trading, surpassing $40 per share. Although the funding itself is exciting, it’s likely the market is cheering the company’s plan to ramp toward “100 million doses” by the end of 2020.

According to the press release, the funding will allow early stage clinical trials to begin in Australia. Top-line results from Phase I studies should be ready in July. As previously mentioned, another portion of the money will go toward scaling up manufacturing capacity in 2020 and 2021.

Barron’s Josh Nathan-Kazis adds in some important context. He writes that Novavax is relatively far along in its studies for a coronavirus vaccine. At the same time, it faces fierce competition from more well-established companies. Novavax has no approved products on the market, although it is currently developing a vaccine for the common flu.

Shares are up over 800% so far for 2020, and analysts have a 12-month price target just over $42. After today’s move, that doesn’t imply very much upside.

However, it’s obvious investors will reward any company that brings a successful vaccine to market. With that in mind, don’t discount the bullish opportunity in NVAX stock. Plus, a vaccine will open the doors to a truly safe reopening, and perhaps a return to the pre-pandemic way of life.

Wedbush: Buy Apple Stock as iPhone 12 Draws Near

[Tuesday, May 12, 12:08 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Sure, “fears for a Nightmare on Elm Street” quarter influenced Apple’s (NASDAQ:AAPL) March results. But at the same time, Wedbush analyst Daniel Ives sees the company’s service business as “Teflon-like.” That’s a pretty nice comparison.

In a new note to clients, Ives turned up the heat on Apple. He gave shares an “outperform” rating and bumped his price target from $335 to $350. With a current share price near $318, that implies 10% of upside.

So what happened to turn Apple from a nightmare to a stock to buy? According to Ives, the thesis revolves around the iPhone 12. The analyst writes that approximately 350 million iPhones are in the company’s upgrade window, and supply chain experts in Asia are confident about iPhone momentum in 2020 and 2021.

But this forecast doesn’t even take into consideration a fall 2020 launch of the new phones. Ives writes that his firm sees a 10%-15% chance Apple releases the phones on schedule. A $350 price target is pretty comforting, especially given that outlook.

InvestorPlace Markets Analyst Luke Lango agrees. He wrote Friday that Apple is one of the best ways to invest in 5G, as consumers will need 5G devices to benefit from the trend. With or without new models in 2020, it’s nice to know analysts are still bullish on AAPL shares. Whenever the iPhone 12 debuts, be ready for a rally.

Is Jeff Bezos’ Movie Theater Move a Chance for Bulls?

[Tuesday, May 12, 10:55 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Rumors swirled faster yesterday in the investing world than in lines for a Marvel movie premier. That’s because the United Kingdom’s Daily Mail reported on a potential acquisition of AMC Entertainment (NYSE:AMC) by Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN).

The former company is a shell of its former self. Movie theaters remain closed in many states even as phase-one reopening plans go into motion. Plus, movie studios have had to delay production work, and therefore big release dates. These last few weeks have been an absolute nightmare for the industry.

But the latter company is a true winner, even amid the novel coronavirus. It seems like nothing can stop Amazon, and it allegedly wants to up its stake in the entertainment world. InvestorPlace’s Will Ashworth questions just how comfortable consumers will be if Bezos successfully extends his reach.

Sure, the rumors raise a handful of ethical questions. But yesterday investors seemed to like the news as AMC stock shot up 30%. It’s back on the move today, up almost 7% in intraday trading.

So, is a huge opportunity for investors, or is it too good to be true? Ashworth isn’t confident Amazon will come to AMC’s rescue. He also isn’t confident that AMC insiders would even approve such a deal.

Similarly, InvestorPlace Markets Analyst Luke Lango thinks it’s not worth chasing AMC stock here. But, he does see opportunity. He writes that Amazon should “absolutely” buy AMC. If it does, expect the deal to add long-term growth tailwinds to an already impressive company.

In the meantime, keep your eyes on the headlines. Any official acknowledgement of the deal could change things.

7 Dividend Stocks to Buy if You’re Searching for Income

[Tuesday, May 12, 10:23 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

This year has no doubt been a rough one for dividend investors. We’ve reported in this blog on the trials many companies face, choosing to slash or suspend dividends in order to better survive the pandemic.

In short, income investing looks bleak. Even Disney (NYSE:DIS) made the move to halt its dividend for the first half of 2020. If Mickey Mouse can’t deliver, then what company can? Well, InvestorPlace’s Ian Bezek has the answer.

Bezek doesn’t disagree that dividend stocks look rough now. But he does have some advice — look for simply the best blue-chip stocks that have solid histories of dividend payouts. These companies are most likely to maintain their dividends even in the midst of chaos.

Phew, that’s reassuring. Here are the seven dividend stocks he’s recommending now:

  • Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ)
  • Public Storage (NYSE:PSA)
  • General Dynamics (NYSE:GD)
  • PepsiCo (NASDAQ:PEP)
  • Qualcomm (NASDAQ:QCOM)
  • Colgate-Palmolive (NYSE:CL)
  • Duke Energy (NYSE:DUK)

Stocks Open Higher Despite Fauci’s Virus Warnings

[Tuesday, May 12, 9:31 a.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Dr. Anthony Fauci, the United States’ top infectious disease expert, will testify today as states continue reopening. He warns that a premature move could cause “needless suffering and death.”

But Fauci is at odds with President Donald Trump and the broader market sentiment. As states reopen, businesses reopen. Furloughed employees return to work. It sounds so simple, right?

On Tuesday morning, it appears so. The S&P 500Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite are all opening in the green.

  • The S&P 500 opened higher by 0.37%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average opened higher by 0.46%
  • The Nasdaq Composite opened higher by 0.78%

Buy Carnival Stock As Consumers Come Cruising Back

[Monday, May 11, 4:40 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Over the last few weeks, this blog has provided investors several reasons to be bullish on Carnival (NYSE:CCL) stock. We’ve looked at insider buying and the company’s plan to return to cruising this summer. Now, InvestorPlace’s Bret Kenwell has an even better reason to buy shares.

It turns out that consumers really are ready to start cruising again. In the three-day period after Carnival announced its summer plans, bookings rose 600% compared to the previous three-day period. How’s that for pent-up demand?

Granted, Carnival isn’t reopening all ports at once. It currently is eyeing summer departures from Florida and Texas, but that’s better than nothing.

As Kenwell writes, cruises won’t look the same. Carnival and its peers need approval from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. If they acquire that, they’ll also be looking at some new health guidelines. He says travelers should anticipate health screenings, no self-serve buffets and restricted occupancy in some areas. Passengers may have to provide medical notes proving they’re not at increased risk of contracting the novel coronavirus.

Still need some convincing? InvestorPlace’s Ian Cooper wrote that now is the perfect time to buy CCL shares. He’s confident that 2021 will see renewed momentum. Plus, he likes votes of confidence from Wall Street. UBS analyst Robin Farley says Carnival is the strongest in its sector.

Stocks Struggle Monday as Virus Uncertainty Reigns

[Monday, May 11, 4:01 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Boris Johnson is pushing for businesses to reopen in the United Kingdom. The United States continues to see a wave of phased reopenings. But South Korea just saw a spike in new novel coronavirus cases, as did China’s Wuhan, the origin of the outbreak.

Many in the U.S. are still waiting for their $1,200 stimulus checks. Democrats and Republicans are bickering over a fourth wave of stimulus payments — and representatives of the former party are hoping to aid hard-hit states.

Elsewhere in the pandemic-driven investing world, attention is on companies like Quidel (NASDAQ:QDEL), set to ramp production of new test kits. Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA) CEO Elon Musk is threatening to move the company unless his California plant is allowed to reopen.

With all this in mind, the S&P 500Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Nasdaq Composite are in rocky territory at the start of the week.

  • The S&P 500 closed higher by 0.01%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed lower by 0.45%
  • The Nasdaq Composite closed higher by 0.78%

Is It Time to Start Buying Car Stocks?

[Monday, May 11, 3:45 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

New reporting from The New York Times shows the light at the end of the tunnel may be getting closer. According to a Monday report from AutoNation (NYSE:AN), car sales began to rebound in April. CEO Mike Jackson said that the “automotive recovery is underway” as consumers remain eager to purchase new vehicles amid easing lockdowns.

No, that’s not exactly what many experts predicted. It seemed likely that car sales would keep falling. Unemployment figures are still on the rise, and consumer spending is hurting as a result. But there are other things working in favor of car sales.

For one, public transit is likely to lose even some loyal riders as employees return to their daily commutes. In early April, Axios’ Kim Hart wrote that public transit was on a “death spiral” as consumers worried about heightened infection risk. After 9/11 rocked New York City, it took six years for subway ridership to return to pre-crisis levels.

Jackson agrees that this growing fear of public transit is partially responsible for the rebound in car sales. At the end of April, sales were off by only 20%. At the start of that same month, they were off by 50%.

Shares of AN stock are up almost 4% in intraday trading, in what has otherwise been a rough day for stocks. On a similar note, Ford (NYSE:F), General Motors (NYSE:GM), Toyota (NYSE:TM) and Fiat Chrysler (NYSE:FCAU) are planning for near-term returns to production. California-based Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA) is finding some high-ranking support in its push to reopen early.

Bullish investors should keep a close on eye on AutoNation and this group of automakers. As states reopen, we should get more data on public transit use. If consumers delay their return to subways and bus systems, car sales could spike.

Bullish on Cryptocurrencies? Here’s a New Way to Invest.

[Monday, May 11, 2:57 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Today is a big day in the cryptocurrency world. After lots of waiting, it’s finally the day of bitcoin’s (CCC:BTC) halvening, or halving. This event has had InvestorPlace analyst Matt McCall pounding the table for weeks. Why? If demand for bitcoin is high at the time of the halving, prices could soar.

But there’s another reason for crypto bulls to celebrate today. According to an early morning press release, investors can now trade physically delivered futures contracts for ether (CCC:ETH). This news makes Chicago’s ErisX the first U.S.-based exchange to allow such trades.

So what does this all mean? Ether refers to the tokens behind ethereum, a specific use of blockchain technology. Ether tokens enable operations on the ethereum blockchain platform.

Bitcoin is certainly the most well-known crypto, but many factors, including the novel coronavirus, have sparked a growing interest in other cryptocurrencies. That’s why ErisX has been pushing for a license to offer more regulated investment products. Previously, the exchange operated a live spot market for ether and other digital currencies.

Now, individual and institutional investors can participate via physically delivered futures contracts. When these contracts expire, investors will actually receive ether tokens, and can use these contracts to build a position in the currency. ErisX has a similar offering for bitcoin futures.

The biggest takeaway is that now investors have direct access to ether through traditional commodities markets. Another popular investment option has been the Grayscale Ethereum Trust (OTCMKTS:ETHE) which tracks the price movement of ether, but does not lead to ownership of tokens.

3 Airline Stocks to Buy That Will Survive the Turbulence

[Monday, May 11, 2:09 p.m.]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

When Warren Buffett of