Our Chief Investment Strategist recently sat down with Bill Patalon to name some of his favorite stocks to buy and hold long-term for superior returns during these particularly dicey markets.
Buy Sell Hold
SAIC, Inc. (NYSE:SAI), the 7th largest government contractor, primarily provides both national and cyber security to the federal government. The company also implements and runs complex software and technological solutions for the health care and energy industries.
SAIC has a market capitalization of over $5 billion and has more than 38,000 employees. Its clientele includes the Department of Defense, Homeland Security and rest of the intelligence community.
These previously free-spending customers are under pressure to lower expenditures due to issues surrounding budget sequestration. But, even with the sequestration issue at the forefront, SAIC is managing to thrive.
You call to make reservations at that new and trendy restaurant. Can you guess who the restaurant called prior to opening its doors? Chances are the first call it made was to Sysco Corporation (NYSE: SYY).
Sysco's by far and away the leading provider of food to the restaurant industry. The company has an 18% share in a $235 billion dollar industry in the U.S., Canada and Ireland.
Sysco provides the restaurateur everything he needs – from high-quality chef ingredients to Styrofoam cups. It serves more than 400,000 customers and has over 180 distribution centers.
Shareholders have been rewarded by Sysco's fine execution of its business plan as it breaks above new multi-year highs.
However, there is something strange afoot.
As Money Morning readers, you're all too familiar with the reasons gold and silver are a necessary part of your portfolio.
Precious metals are one of the only practical hedges against political upheaval, a falling economy and the monetary debasement that is going on around the world.
So when subscriber, Elke B. suggested I review Coeur Mining Inc. (NYSE: CDE), I knew I didn't have to reinvent the wheel.
Because given the current wall of worry, the long-term future of silver and gold prices still looks bright.
And with the largest U.S.-based silver miner and a growing gold miner like Coeur down 44% since Jan. 1., I thought Elke might be onto something of a solid rebound play.
But to find out, I needed to dig a little deeper. Here's what I found…
When was the last time you sat in the stands at a local high school or grade school ball game?
If you did, it would be impossible not notice all of the kids decked out in Under Armour Inc. (NYSE: UA) gear.
Based in Baltimore, Md., Under Armour is one of the fastest-growing brands in the country with a 60% share of a $3 billion dollar market.
A leader in synthetic performance apparel, the company has built its reputation by delivering high-quality, technologically advanced clothing that keep athletes cool, dry and light.
More importantly, it has taken the current vogue generation by storm as something cool, cutting-edge and a must-have for a "serious" athlete.
But is Under Armour just "the latest thing" or "must-have" for your portfolio as well?
Let's take a look….
We all know United Parcel Service (NYSE: UPS) as the guys in the big brown trucks.
There's a reason why they are always in such a hurry: They handle over 16 million packages a day worldwide.
But what you might not know is their business model goes well beyond just being the world's largest package delivery company.
With service to over 220 countries, the Atlanta-based company also offers Supply Chain Solutions, including freight forwarding, fulfillment and returns.
So bringing a package to your door is just part of the story for "Big Brown" and its share price.
But before I tell you whether or not to buy this big name bellwether, let's take a look at what keeps the wheels spinning at UPS.
Online Shopping is the 'Driver'
Despite the ongoing saga with the struggling world economies, UPS has fared remarkably well, showing strength and resiliency rather than weakness.
Part of the reason is the robust growth of e-commerce in the U.S-which simply means more packages and higher sales.
In its most recent report, earnings per share for the first quarter were $1.04, up 4% year-over-year. Domestic package revenues were $8.27 billion, growing 3.3% year-over-year while operating profit grew more than 9%. To the plus side, operating margin also expanded by 70 basis points.
Start the conversation
When it comes to the firearms industry, throw out everything you know about investing.
In this industry, sales, cash flows, margins, 50-day moving averages and volume indicators just don't seem to matter.
When the Second Amendment is involved, high emotional responses are on full display.
So why should it be any different when it comes to a legendary firearms maker like Smith & Wesson (Nasdaq: SWHC)?
But old habits die hard, so before I go into what is truly driving the share price of Smith & Wesson, I can't possibly skip the boring stuff.
With gun sales going through the roof, let's take a look at whether or not this company has enough firepower to be part of your portfolio.
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Almost everyone has overindulged in a beer or three. And while that occasionally turns out to be something of a big mistake, the thirst for beer is hard to quench.
That's one of the reasons why I'm bullish about Molson Coors Brewing Company (NYSE: TAP).
Formed by the merger of Molson of Canada and Coors of the United States in 2005, this marriage joined two companies that have seen it all in the beer business–even to the point where their product was illegal during the days of prohibition.
Even still, both companies managed to not only survive but thrive.
Today, the descendants of the original founders still greatly influence Molson Coors and have a vested interest in the company's profitability and the incentive to keep the family legacies alive and well for future generations.
But that's only a small piece of why I like this company. The better reason is its ability to grow sales.
Investors in Boston Scientific (NYSE: BSX) have been through the wringer in recent years.
The medical device maker hit its peak back in 2004, reaching highs near $44. Since then the company is down over 82% and has been hovering under $10 for years.
So how did shares of Boston Scientific fall so hard?
Much of the blame can be traced back to the company's ill-conceived 2006 plan to become the leading player in the medical device industry by outbidding Johnson & Johnson (NYSE: JNJ) for Guidant Corp to the tune of $27.3 billion.
It's a deal Fortunemagazine described at the time as the second-worst takeover deal ever.
But the problems didn't stop there. Boston Scientific ran into all types of issues with the quality of not only Guidant products, but its own as well.
This led to a string of product recalls, patient lawsuits, run-ins with the FDA and a share price that could never seem to find a bottom.
But now, with its new CEO, Michael Mahoney — who has a cautious but optimistic view for Boston Scientific — there just may be enough new catalysts to turn the company around.
Here's the deal…
Everybody knows Kellogg Company (NYSE: K) by its superb line of breakfast cereals.
In fact, since Kellogg completed the $2.7 billion Pringle acquisition on June 1, 2012 the company's share price has increased over 30% with nary a pause.
Now I realize that eating just one Pringles potato chip is impossible, but does that justify the market's appetite for Kellogg's shares?
Here's my breakdown on the stock…