Four long-term growth stocks for uncertain times

The consumer staples sector tends to do well even through market turbulence.

Vikram Barhat 7 March, 2017 | 6:00PM

The ongoing political posturing and radical policy moves in the United States continue to make investors skittish. Concerns are mounting as to how this environment will impact certain sectors' performances, piling on the misery for investors already feeling the squeeze of stretched equity valuations.

This may be a good time to turn attention to sectors of the economy that enjoy relative insularity from tumultuous news and economic cycles. One such sector is consumer staples. Perhaps not as glamorous as financial and technology, but it consists of non-cyclical businesses -- food, retail and beverage industries -- that tend to do well even through period of market turbulence. Adverse economic and geopolitical data have little bearing on consumer staples companies, whose performances are closely tied to consumers' need for essential goods.

The S&P 500 Consumer Staples Index returned an impressive 11.55% (in U.S. dollars) on a one-year basis, as of Feb. 28, 2017, according to Morningstar data. The year-to-date returns of the index stand at 6.68%, ahead of 5.94% gains for the S&P 500 index, as of February month-end.

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Securities Mentioned in Article

Security NamePriceChange (%)Morningstar Rating
Anheuser-Busch InBev SA/NV ADR67.99 USD-1.31
Coca-Cola Co52.93 USD-0.54
Ingredion Inc80.73 USD-0.36
Walmart Inc151.83 USD0.31

About Author

Vikram Barhat

Vikram Barhat  Vikram Barhat is a Toronto-based financial writer specializing in investing, stock markets, personal finance and other areas of the financial services industry. He also writes for CNBC, BBC, The Globe and Mail, and Toronto Star.

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