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The 5 Best-Performing Stocks of the Past 20 Years

The 5 Best-Performing Stocks of the Past 20 Years

best stocks all time

That said, Cisco shares have been something of a disappointment since the current bull market began. True, shares in Cisco are up 266% since the market bottom of March 2009, including dividends, but the Nasdaq-100 index has gained 600% over the same span. Today, the company is reconfiguring itself to take advantage of the growth of cloud-based computing and the Internet of Things. Heck, including dividends, Visa’s stock has returned 861% over the past 10 years. That beats the S&P 500’s total return by nearly 490 percentage points. Verizon has been a Dow stock since 2004, and it’s currently the sole representative of the telecommunications industry.

In 2003, it changed its name to Altria Group and spun off its international operations as Phillip Morris International in 2008. As of the most recent department of agriculture census, 38% of all farms — the largest category — had owners whose primary occupation is not farming. By focusing directly on this market, Tractor Supply Co. has managed to grow despite the harsh headwinds against retailers in the past 20 years. In fact, the companies on this list may demonstrate that it’s very hard to predict what companies will be winners years from now.

The Boeing Company

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. Telecom stocks are known more for income than growth, and Verizon has largely stuck to that script. The share price for the most part has held steady over the past five years, but Verizon’s annual dividend has increased every year since 2006. It’s a testament to the ability of dividends to create wealth for shareholders over time. The latest quarterly report was mediocre at best, as several of the company’s most promising segments underperformed. At the very least, macroeconomic conditions will most likely cause shares of Alphabet to fluctuate over the rest of 2022, and most likely well into next year.

Coca-Cola has paid a quarterly dividend since 1920, and that cash payout has increased annually for 55 straight years. According to Snowflake’s latest earnings report, revenue increased 83% year-over-year; that’s very impressive considering the macroeconomic environment. And while revenue is expected to come in slightly over the rest of the year, forecasts are still calling for full-year revenue growth somewhere in the neighborhood of 68%. At the very least, shares of MELI are trading for much less than they were at this time last year. With a price-to-earnings growth ratio somewhere in the neighborhood of 1.42x, MercadoLibre appears to be trading at an expensive value relative to the Internet & Direct Marketing Retail industry. However, the company’s 5.24x price-to-sales ratio suggests it hasn’t traded at this much of a discount since 2009.

of the Best-Performing Stocks of All Time

To say that Apple (AAPL) had a better time of it than Microsoft in the decade following the bursting of the tech bubble is quite an understatement. The Google search engine is Alphabet’s most important business, but not its only one, thus the corporate name change. Shares in Tencent, which trade over the counter in the U.S. as American depositary receipt (ADRs), have soared 1,530% on a price basis over the past 10 years.

  • The company was founded in 1852, and even today its name is synonymous with the iconic six-horse stagecoach of the 19th century American West.
  • Already a leader in the automobile industry, Ford is a safe bet to lead the world’s shift to electric vehicles.
  • The brain trust at Forbes has run the numbers, conducted the research, and done the analysis to come up with some of the best places for you to make money in 2024.
  • Dropping from $12.8 billion to $317 million over the last 12 months, the collapse in free cash flow has investors concerned.

True, AAPL stock traded sideways for the first few years of the 21st century, but an explosion of innovation soon put an end to that. Under the visionary leadership of the late Steve Jobs, Apple essentially reinvented itself for the mobile age, launching revolutionary gadgets such as the iPod, MacBook and iPad. With a current market value in excess of U.S. $600 billion, Tencent is China’s most valuable company and a top-10 most valuable stock in the world. From humble beginnings as a single discount store, Walmart (WMT) now operates approximately 10,500 retail locations under 48 nameplates in 24 countries, and it employs 2.2 million workers. The digital revolution is a running theme when it comes to the best stocks of the past three decades, and so it follows almost axiomatically that Taiwan Semiconductor (TSM) should make the list. Berkshire is now a holding company comprising dozens of diverse businesses, selling everything from underwear (Fruit of the Loom) to insurance policies (Geico).

The Merck family’s involvement in the pharmaceutical business dates back to 17th century Germany. The stock price, adjusted for splits and dividends, remains well below its 2000 peak near $95 a share. In the past 17 years, Merck has experienced plenty of ups and downs, from the Vioxx recall in 2004 to its megamerger with Schering-Plough in 2009.

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The company’s Disney Plus streaming platform debuted as a smashing success. And let’s not forget to mention Disney’s theme parks, which remain global attractions. Amoco boasts a prestigious pedigree, tracing its roots back to John D. Rockefeller’s Standard Oil empire of the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

best stocks all time

True, shares in Cisco are up 277% since the market bottom of March 2009, including dividends, but the Nasdaq-100 index has gained 617% over the same span. The best tech stocks today have been helping the market hit record highs seemingly every other day. Less well-known is how technology has delivered such a disproportionate amount of the market’s lifetime wealth creation. Dividends play an unsurprisingly prominent role when it comes to long-term wealth creation. Indeed, take a look at the best stocks of all time, and you’ll see that most of them have long histories of returning cash to shareholders through regular dividend payments.


In that case, an exaggerated margin might liquidate your holdings once your balance can no longer support the initial price deviation. The implication is that you’ll be losing on two fronts — your invested capital and potential returns. It is, therefore, vital to ensure that you’re leveraging a feasible margin ratio to open your position, especially if you trade stocks. Traders who use margin to improve their buying power take on increased risk when they buy stock with borrowed money. In that case, you have to understand that you’ll need to reload your account with fresh capital if the trade goes south to avoid liquidation.

  • As hard as it may be to believe these days, shares in General Electric (GE, $13.33) have been one of the best bets in history.
  • At its current valuation, Ford is already trading in the basement with low-price stocks.
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  • At the very least, valuations have come in a lot; perhaps too much in some cases.

It sells a range of drinks under brands such as Monster Energy, NOS, and Full Throttle. Its share price has surged from below $0.10 in January 2003 to more than $63, lifting its market value from less than $1 million to almost $35 billion. Berkshire Hathaway, the company he’s managed since 1965, has returned 19.8 percent annually through the end of 2022 during Buffett’s leadership, doubling the return of the S&P 500 over that time period. Index funds are inherently diversified, at least among the segment of the market they track. Because of that, all it takes is a few of these funds to build a well-rounded, diversified portfolio. They’re also less risky than attempting to pick a few could-be winners out of a lineup of stocks.

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In 2022, Berkshire received dividends of $704 million from its Coke holdings and its stake was worth nearly $25 billion. For example, a young person who is looking to grow their retirement savings aggressively might gravitate toward growth stocks for their high-risk, high-reward volatility. These are the best stocks in the S&P 500 right now, based on one-year performance. Predicting the future of even the current top-performing stocks is a job even the pros haven’t yet mastered.

The DuPont that created more than $300 billion in wealth for its shareholders since 1926 isn’t the same company that exists today. That’s because DuPont merged with Dow Chemical in August 2017 to form a new mega-company called DowDuPont (DWDP). DuPont’s familiar “DD” ticker symbol was retired upon completion of the merger. As the company grew and gained prominence, it was briefly added to Dow Jones industrial average in 1924 but dropped a year later.