Easterly Government Properties
> YTD Gain: 6%
Easterly Government Properties Inc. (NYSE: DEA) is a REIT that focuses primarily on owning and leasing Class A commercial properties to the U.S. government. The company’s focus keeps it away from just having local government tenants that could face serious shortfalls as tax receipts drop during the recession. It could face problems around future shutdowns and out of office habits, but it works with mission-critical government agencies directly or through the General Services Administration. You can buy a 10-year Treasury for less than a 1% yield, or you can play “the federal government’s landlord” and collect a 4% dividend yield.
> YTD Gain: 16%
eBay Inc. (NASDAQ: EBAY) has now moved beyond owning PayPal and the marketplaces and auction formats have also helped with other online selling sources in keeping the public out of harm’s way during the public health scare. eBay saw many analysts raising price targets after first-quarter earnings and the company has managed to end its fight with activist investing firm Starboard Value, along with naming a new CEO after completing the sale of StubHub for over $4 billion earlier in 2020.
> YTD Gain: 8%
Electronic Arts Inc. (NASDAQ: EA) has been a stay-at-home winner, but it’s always a popular video game maker. With no live sports to watch, it cleans house with its pro sports video game lineup, and it has Apex Legends, Star Wars, The Sims, Battlefield and others, to name a few. EA is very much looking forward to the Xbox and PlayStation refresh cycle coming late this year. EA showed that digital net bookings for the last fiscal rose 9% to $4.052 billion. The company also noted that FIFA 20 has more than 25 million unique players, Madden NFL 20 reached the highest engagement levels ever, Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order had over 10 million unique players to date, and that Apex Legends was the most downloaded free-to-play PS4 game last year.
> YTD Gain: 78%
Etsy Inc. (NASDAQ: ETSY) was a surprise winner of the COVID-19 recession. Making and selling arts and crafts products does not sound all that recession-proof, but many out of work people are looking for bargains, they are looking to sell crafts and handmade goods, and they saw lots of new business from interesting handmade face masks that can make people still look artsy and cute despite wearing a facial mask as do-it-yourself PPE. Etsy’s shift to free shipping seems to have now worked through the kinks that were causing some ripples at the end of 2019 and the start of 2020.
> YTD Gain: 100%
Everbridge Inc. (NASDAQ: EVBG) allows organizations and enterprises (including governments) with mass notifications to individuals or groups ahead of, during and after disasters and other emergencies. The company was already relevant before COVID-19 and now it’s even more relevant. The pandemic has helped its business, but incidents such as severe weather, workplace violence, terrorism, power outages, environmental alerts, mass hacks or IT breaches, infrastructure or equipment failures, missing persons and so on are not going to disappear.
> YTD Gain: 16%
General Mills Inc. (NYSE: GIS) is another company that manufactures and markets branded consumer foods across the world. As more consumers are rushing to grocery stores to fill their pantries, the biggest winners from this are companies like General Mills that produce branded products that fill these store shelves. It’s worth pointing out that as many restaurants remain closed or operating under capacity, more people will get their food from the grocery store. General Mills stock is standing near a multiyear high, and if this trend continues it could reach even higher.
> YTD Gain: 20%
Hain Celestial Group Inc. (NASDAQ: HAIN) offers a healthy alternative to much of the food being sold during this pandemic. At the same time, the company has a huge portfolio of consumer products, all of which are being stockpiled by consumers. Shares are currently holding near a multiyear high and have been on the rise ever since this pandemic got underway. Consumer goods have proven resilient in this time and could continue on this path to the new normal.
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