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Over the weekend, we found out that the year-old U.S. Space Force members would be known from now on as "Guardians."
While it brought on the inevitable comparison to Walt Disney Co.'s (NYSE: DIS) Guardians of the Galaxy franchise, it is worth noting that Space Force is shaping up as we near 2021.
While still in infancy, the space industry is building steam. And we now have a few space stocks to buy headed into the new year.
Space Force has its first two bases already. The Patrick Air Force Base in Cocoa Beach and the Cape Canaveral base have both been renamed as Space Force bases. Space Force also got a $2 billion allocation in the spending bill passed by Congress on Monday.
While the Biden team has not talked much about Space Force, it is viewed as unlikely that they would move to disband it. Space will be a big part of the global geopolitical situation in the future, and that's highly unlikely to change.
Mr. Biden has made commitments to NASA and increased space travel during his administration.
Between NASA and Space Force, the space race stocks should continue to do very well. Here are some of those stocks to buy now...
Space Stocks Partner with Defense
Over the weekend, Lockheed Martin (LMT) made its latest bid to be a big player in the new version of the space race.
Lockheed is spending $4.4 billion to buy $4.4 billion Aerojet Rocketdyne Holdings Inc. (NYSE: AJRD). Aerojet is one of the biggest manufacturers of rocket propulsion systems in the world. It has been part of every U.S. space and missile program since the start of the cold war decades ago.
Aerojet has also built the rocket thruster on every U.S. interplanetary space mission since the first Apollo flights back in the early 1960s.
The purchase will position Lockheed to compete against Elon Musk's SpaceX and Jeff Bezos' Blue Origin in the space industry.
Lockheed is already a big player in the space business as it is part owner of the United Launch Alliance and is big in the satellite business as well.
The latest purchase should help it remain a leader in space. It should also be a potential supplier to the Space Force of space vehicles that may eventually need to conduct operations. Lockheed is already working with the Force to modernize today's GPS satellite constellation with new technology and capabilities.
Space Force has said that these new satellites will have Regional Military Protection Capability, which will increase anti-jam support to ensure U.S. and allied forces cannot be denied access to GPS by their enemies.
Lockheed won't be the only defense stock taking to space, however. Here's another one of the best space stocks to watch now.
A Space Stock Flying Even Higher
Boeing Co. (NYSE: BA) is determined to be a big player in space as well. It is already working closely with Space Force to launch equipment.
Earlier this year, Boeing helped the Space Force launch the X-37B spaceplane. The Boeing-made space plane is an unmanned, reusable spacecraft that takes off vertically and lands horizontally on a runway like the old space shuttles.
WARNING: It's one of the most traded stocks on the market every day - make sure it's nowhere near your portfolio. WATCH NOW.
Space Force officials are close-mouthed about what the mission of the X37B might be.
In October, Boeing also announced that it had won a $298 million contract to build a satellite payload prototype and develop a secure communications architecture for the U.S. Space Force's Evolved Strategic SATCOM (ESS) program.
Now, names Lockheed and Boeing may be the first that come to mind when we think about space stocks. But this is an incredibly new market, with a super-dynamic range of tech companies vying for a hand...
Intelligence and Infrastructure Space Stocks
With a market cap of just over $2 billion, Maxar Technologies Inc. (NYSE: MAXR) is not usually mentioned in a discussion of space stocks.
It should be.
Maxar is a Colorado-based earth intelligence and space infrastructure company. The Earth Intelligence division provides information to United States, Canadian, and other international government agencies for defense and intelligence purposes.
It is the space infrastructure division that is the most exciting for us. This division makes everything from satellites and spacecraft systems to nimble robotics and innovative payloads. This includes space robots for planetary exploration and in-orbit satellite servicing.
Maxar is already working with Space Force as it was recently awarded a contract to develop prototype mission data processing applications for some Space Force operations.
Maxar has designed its business to be in line with U.S. National Defense Strategy Missions of International Defense and Intelligence. It works closely with several defense agencies. We can expect it to be a growing part of the U.S. missions in space of both an exploratory and military nature.
Maxar is also a supplier to some of the larger space companies, including both Lockheed Martin and Boeing.
Space will be a growth industry for decades, and those who commit to it early can make enormous amounts of money with the blue-chip aerospace companies and the up and coming space stocks.
We also expect to see a lot of smaller space stock and SPAC mergers in 2021 that create more space stock opportunities.
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