3 unstoppable investments that everyone needs in their portfolio | Smart Switch: Personal Finance

(James Brunley)

Do you just want to set it and forget it, so to speak? While this mindset is the essence of a buy and hold strategy, it also arguably oversimplifies it. Buying and holding is clearly a long-term thing, but that doesn’t mean you should never check those stocks.

However, some publicly traded companies are so reliable, regardless of the economic context, that they can be considered “unstoppable” by long-term investors. Here’s a closer look at three of them you might want to consider adding to your portfolio while they’re cheaper than just a few months ago.

1.Merck

pharmaceutical giant Merck (NYSE:MRK) never really seemed like he was working wholeheartedly on a COVID-19 vaccine and seemed happy to let rivals like Pfizer Y modern take the mantle And what little effort Merck had made on the coronavirus vaccine front was largely abandoned early last year when the company halted trials of its V590 and V591 vaccine candidates. The reason? mediocre efficiency. Given all this, it’s no surprise that Merck has been one of the few pharmaceutical stocks to underperform for most of the past two years.

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In hindsight, it was probably more of a benefit than a disadvantage that Merck was not waist-deep in the COVID vaccine waters.

Image source: Getty Images.

While the pandemic has been lucrative for some pharmaceutical names, that revenue boost was never going to be fully sustained. A lot of other research and development was put on hold to focus on creating COVID vaccines. Now, many of these companies’ pipelines are a year or more behind schedule.

But not Merck. It has 77 unique phase 2 trials underway and 29 phase 3 programs. That’s in addition to the three drug approval applications currently under review by regulators. His portfolio also consists of several new uses for the cancer-fighting miracle drug Keytruda, which after its first approval in 2018 has expanded into a franchise worth $17 billion per year. However, there is still more growth on the cards.

By the way, the market is beginning to realize all this. After nearly two years of tepid performance, Merck shares are now up more than 20% since the end of 2021 alone. However, there is more gas left in the tank for this pharmaceutical outfit that has remained focused on its particular big picture.

2.Procter & Gamble

The Procter & Gamble Company (New York Stock Exchange: PG) is the name behind many of consumers’ most beloved brands, including Pampers diapers, Tide laundry detergent, and Bounty paper towels. Loyalty to these brands is strong, to be sure, but it’s not the only reason, or even the best reason, to own a piece of P&G.

Neither is its ability to pass on its higher costs to consumers. Although shoppers complain about the higher prices they see as they walk down the store aisles, they still pay those prices. Procter’s latest quarter organic sales were up 10% year-over-year, roughly on par with its 16% increase in the costs of the products it sold during the three-month period.

Rather, the main reason Procter & Gamble is so unstoppable (and the reason you’ll want to own this particular consumer goods stock) is its sheer size and subsequent marketing budget. With $76 billion in revenue per year, this company is nearly twice the size of any of its direct competitors and can market its brands more aggressively than any of its rivals. Depending on the year, there’s a good chance that P&G is the world’s largest advertiser in terms of total dollars spent on the effort. Don’t discount the importance of this kind of promotional firepower.

3.microsoft

Finally add Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT) to his list of hit stocks that would be welcome additions to just about anyone’s portfolio.

With just a quick glance at the stock chart, it would be easy to question the bullish argument. Like many of its tech peers, Microsoft shares are down more than 20% from their November high and appear to be still moving lower. Also, given its age and size, no doubt some investors are calling the company a computer-centric past rendered irrelevant by newer, more modern technologies like mobile phones.

If that’s what you’re thinking, though, take a closer look at Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella has shaped since taking the helm just over eight years ago. Cloud computing is a big part of their business for corporate data centers as well as consumers who want browser-based access to applications like Microsoft Word and Excel. Not only do these deals mean that the company is as relevant today as it was 25 years ago, when the PC boom was just taking root, but it also means that the software giant enjoys a lot of recurring revenue. Meanwhile, Microsoft is forever expanding its video game and digital advertising division, building its momentum beyond the Windows operating system.

And it’s not a collection of slow-growing commercial companies. Analysts call for revenue growth of more than 18% this year and more than 14% next year, mainly because the company has evolved with the ever-changing technology field.

Look for more of the same in the future too. Until the world is ready to ditch the use of smartphones, game consoles, the cloud and the Internet, Microsoft has plenty of opportunities to connect.

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James Brumley has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has positions and recommends Microsoft. The Motley Fool recommends Moderna Inc. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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