The 5 Best-Performing Stocks of the Past 20 Years

We do not include the universe of companies or financial offers that may be available to you. If you do want to invest in a few stocks as a complement to your core broad-based investing strategy, ignore which way the market is trending and examine each stock on its own merits, experts say. If you’re a long-term investor, financial advisors generally recommend building a broadly diversified portfolio. By spreading your bets across a wide array of asset classes, you decrease the chances that a sharp drop in any one particular investment derails your portfolio’s performance. Most equities are traded openly on a major stock exchange, making them simple to acquire and sell.

Buffett’s single biggest investment, at more than 42% of Berkshire Hathaway’s portfolio, makes a starring appearance on our list below. It should come as no surprise that the greatest value investor of all time would be behind one of the best stocks of the past 30 years. XOM might not repeat as a top stock of the next 30 years, but it could still be a solid buy-and-hold pick if the dividend hikes keep coming. As great a wealth creator as HD has been, the bulk of its outperformance has come in only the past decade or so. Bulls say the relentless global adoption of digital transactions should keep Mastercard’s record for wealth creation on track for the foreseeable future.

Worst-performing S&P 500 stocks as of January 2023

The original AT&T Corp. was a classic example of a widows-and-orphans stock. It paid generous dividends and carried low risk; in other words, it was an ideal investment for those who needed income and could ill afford to lose principal. AT&T Corp. shares served widows, orphans and many others admirably for generations. Then known as the American Telephone and Telegraph Company, the stock first joined the Dow in 1916. It was dropped from the industrial average in 1928, added back in 1939, and dropped again in 2004. Adding to the confusion, the new AT&T Inc. shares graced the Dow from 2005 until 2015 because SBC (renamed AT&T after the 2005 merger, remember?) had been a Dow component since 1999.

best performing stock of all time

In 1993, you could have acquired a share of Boeing’s stock for less than $10. Tesla still has excellent potential for the future because the electric vehicle industry is only just getting started. With a diverse collection of media entertainment platforms, Disney continues to be an incredibly popular investment. Payouts have gone up for nearly 60 years, and the future remains bright for one of the most dominant non-alcoholic beverage brands in the world. These remarkable companies have carved their way to success in many different ways, and we are going to explore their background as we proceed through this list.

That’s isn’t to suggest you shift your entire portfolio into tech, the worst performer in 2022. Rather, it illustrates that the factors that drive certain corners of the market to take off are unpredictable from year to year. Following an overall down year in the market, “don’t chase the few things that have performed well,” Christine Benz, director of personal finance and retirement planning at Morningstar, told CNBC Make It.

In February 2022, Compound Capital Advisors compiled a list of the 10 best-performing stocks in the market over the past 30 years. These stocks can provide some insight for investors looking to identify the top stocks to own for the next 30 years. Coca-Cola was one of the best-performing stocks over the 20th century as the company built up a number of competitive advantages in beverages. First, the namesake brand itself has become one of the most valuable in the world. Coca-Cola is the first beverage many people around the world think of when they reach for something to drink, thanks to decades of successful advertising and the popularity of its original formula. Coca-Cola has used the same strategy to build up similar brands, such as Sprite and Fanta, as well as younger brands it’s recently acquired, including Vitamin Water.

Beyond your own personal risk tolerance and how long you plan to invest, strategic investors do significant research into a company before buying its stock. They perform fundamental analysis, which involves looking at the company’s financial statements and considering how economic factors might influence the stock’s future performance. These stocks have continued to post solid gains over the past year, despite an overall falling stock market. The investing information provided on this page is for educational purposes only.

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“You’re not just betting on capital expenditures rolling over and higher energy prices—Blakckbeard is also ramping up production in these wells significantly,” which will also pay off, he describes. The fund initiated a position in mid-2020, using the collapse in energy prices brought on by the pandemic as an opportunity to buy up shares on the cheap. “If you underwrite an assumption of higher oil and gas prices next year, which we think is going to happen, the dividend will rerate materially—especially as these new wells come online,” Davolos adds.

Tesla has created an astonishing level of wealth so far, and investors seemingly just price shares for more of the same. But as much wealth as the electric vehicle maker has created in its relatively short life, it has done so with gut-wrenching volatility. The sprawling South Korean technology and industrial conglomerate is engaged in a vast swath of activities.

As we continue our transition into an increasingly cashless society, American Express is poised to reap the rewards. But no product was more revolutionary than the iPhone, which now accounts for nearly $200 billion in revenue each year. Because the company is well-diversified, it’s less subject to industry-specific risks. It’s estimated that these top brands make up approximately 60% of Hormel’s retail sales. They also make a significant portion of their revenue from licensing products to stores and restaurants like Olive Garden.

Although it has cooled off over the past few years, China’s economy experienced a kind of explosive expansion over the last three decades that has rarely been seen on the world historical stage. Advocates of buy-and-hold index investing have a fresh batch of powerful evidence supporting the wisdom of their ways, new research shows.

Comprehensive management of employer-sponsored retirement accounts, including 401k and 403b. With that, Forbes tapped Morningstar to identify top-performing fund managers who have either beat their benchmarks this year or on a longer-term basis over three-year, five-year or ten-year periods. Bankrate is compensated in exchange for featured placement of sponsored products and services, or your clicking on links posted on this website. This compensation may impact how, where and in what order products appear. does not include all companies or all available products. Of course, not even the great stocks can do well all the time, so it can be useful to keep an eye on some of the stocks that have been underperforming.

  • Today, Verizon is the largest wireless provider in the U.S., and it has expanded aggressively into the content arena with the acquisitions of AOL and Yahoo.
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  • The company opened its first Ross Dress for Less in 1982 and now runs more than 1,700 stores across 38 states, the District of Columbia, and Guam.
  • A dollar invested in Altria in 1968 turned into $6,638 by 2015 with dividends reinvested, good for a 663,700% total return, or 20.6% annually.
  • Amoco opened its first service station in 1912 and later moved into oil and gas exploration.

However, since the split, Altria has actually outperformed Phillip Morris International, returning 328% versus Phillip Morris International’s 190%, according to YCharts. But what really set Apple on its course to becoming the world’s largest publicly traded company – and the greatest wealth creator of the past 30 years – was the 2007 debut of the iPhone. Although TSLA has had some stumbles over the years – production snafus, delivery shortfalls – the hype and promise of the Musk-backed firm has led the market essentially to abandon normal valuation metrics.

SEE ALSO: All 30 Dow Stocks Ranked: The Analysts Weigh In

DuPont was added back to the Dow in 1935, where it remained for more than 80 years. The newly formed DowDuPont takes the place of the old DuPont in the Dow. Perhaps best known for Scotch tape and Post-It notes, it’s easy to forget that one of the three M’s in 3M stands for mining. (The other two M’s stand for Minnesota and manufacturing, as in Minnesota Mining and Manufacturing Co.) The company began in 1902 as a small-time outfit in search of the mineral corundum. The mining venture didn’t pan out, but the failure did force the company to innovate and branch out.

Such was its success that it managed to become a top-50 wealth creator despite ending its run as a standalone company 16 years ago. The company became a publicly traded company in 1919 and has been recognized as one of the best performing stocks of all time. Kent is a former financial advisor at Bernstein Private Wealth Management. Before Bernstein, Tiffany constructed client portfolios and worked as an analyst, portfolio manager, and partner at several investment management firms. Microsoft’s focus on enterprise customers and – most importantly – its shift to selling cloud-based services such as Azure and Office 365 have been an astounding success. Today, Microsoft is a dominant player in cloud computing, and the stock price shows it.

The rail company has evolved over the past century and a half due to a series of mergers with or acquisitions of other railroads. The modern-era Union Pacific was formed in 1969 to manage what had become a spaghetti-like mix of routes. Warren Buffett once held a 2% stake in Union Pacific, but sold it when Berkshire Hathaway (BRK.B) bought competitor BNSF in 2009. Buffett has always had an affinity for railroads because he believes they form the backbone of the U.S. economy. But before we get to our profiles of the 50 best-performing stocks of all time, many of which are components of the Dow Jones Industrial Average, a word of caution. Accurately identifying the precious few “home run” stocks amid the many thousands of underachieving names is extremely difficult.

best performing stock of all time

Attempts to restart growth with smartphones and tablets were unsuccessful, losses mounted, and management was forced to lay off tens of thousands of employees. The stock was dropped from the Dow in 2013, and Hewlett-Packard split into two companies, HP Inc. and Hewlett Packard Enterprise , in 2015. HP Inc. carries on the legacy of the original stock, which was first listed on the New York Stock Exchange in 1961. We selected the 12 S&P 500 constituents that have posted significant share price gains over the last five years as of January 6.

Best Performing S&P 500 Stocks in the Last 5 Years

As a result, the Dow stock has been a market laggard for quite some time and nas never recaptured its 2000 tech-bubble levels. Another key to KO’s wealth-creation record is its generous and rising dividend. Coca-Cola has paid a quarterly dividend since 1920, and that cash payout has increased annually for 60 straight years.

Choosing good stocks for your portfolio is a relatively time-consuming task, and you need to look beyond performance metrics like the ones on this page. Yes, it’s a solidly good sign if a stock is able to outperform during periods of market volatility and the broad market declines like we’ve seen in 2022. But as referenced above, there are a number of other factors to consider. She has covered personal finance and investing for over 15 years, and was a senior writer and spokesperson at NerdWallet before becoming an assigning editor. Arielle has appeared as a financial expert on the “Today” show, NBC News and ABC’s “World News Tonight,” and has been quoted in national publications including The New York Times, MarketWatch and Bloomberg News. The company has seen a 12.7% annual growth rate in revenue over the past 21 years, expanding its LTL market share from 2.9% in 2002 to 10% in 2018.

SEE ALSO: 25 Dividend Stocks That Analysts Love the Most

Similar to the late Steve Jobs at Apple, Musk’s showmanship, close identification with the company and his evident genius is a major selling point. As the world’s most popular social media network – with roughly 2.9 billion global monthly active users – advertisers are happy to pay Meta to reach all those eyeballs. JNJ is set to split off its consumer health business – the one that makes Tylenol, Listerine and Band Aid – from its pharmaceuticals and medical devices divisions.

While all of these stocks produced massive returns, the forces that fueled their growth may not continue into this decade. Shares of what was then known as Google – the corporate name was changed to Alphabet in 2015 – were initially offered to the public less than 20 years ago. And by the end of the first trading day in 2004, the company was worth $27 billion. Berkshire is now a holding company comprising dozens of diverse businesses, selling everything from underwear to insurance policies . Key acquisitions since 1990 include the aforementioned Geico, BNSF Railway, Lubrizol, Precision Castparts and General Re.

The company was founded in 2003 and had a stock price of $3.84 on July 2nd in 2010. There are index funds that track a range of underlying assets, from small-cap stocks, to international stocks, bonds and commodities such as gold. The scoring formula for beaxy exchange review online brokers and robo-advisors takes into account over 15 factors, including account fees and minimums, investment choices, customer support and mobile app capabilities. These are the best stocks in the S&P 500 right now, based on 1-year performance.

The Bottom Line: Blue Chips are the Most Consistent Stocks

Denmark has been ranked fifth in our list of the top five highest-performing stock markets since 1900. Several factors have contributed to the expansion of Denmark’s stock markets. Denmark was officially neutral during the World War but leaned toward Germany for apparent political reasons, building minefields around its waters at Germany’s request to control the Baltic republics. During the war, the Danish navy’s primary task was to lay mines and keep track of them. The Australian equity market has been a vital market for Australian businesses to source capital, as well as a good destination for household retirement funds. The total capitalization of listed firms in Australia was slightly less than $2 trillion at the end of 2018, or around 100 percent of GDP.

“Keep in mind also that from 1980 to the present, annual returns for the S&P 500 were positive in 32 of 42 years despite intra-year declines averaging 14 percent.” There’s never any guarantee for the future, but it’s a pretty safe bet that most of these solution architect companies will continue to be competitive and profitable for many decades to come. Investors won’t have to stress when investing in a diverse company like Microsoft because it has acquired so many different platforms and services to expand its brand.

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