Election Year Investing: 3 Must-Buy Stocks for Investors on Either Side of the Aisle

Stocks to buy

The 2024 U.S. presidential election season is heating up, and the primary season is wrapping up. Yet, no matter whether you are a Democrat, Republican, Independent or none of the above, election-year stocks could be a great opportunity for your portfolio.

Even before ballots are cast on Nov. 5, 2024, many stocks with election-related catalysts will likely make big moves in anticipation of the results. As you would expect, some stocks stand to gain if it appears likely that presumptive Republican party candidate Donald Trump will win a second, non-consecutive term as President.

There are stocks poised to gain if it becomes apparent that the presumptive Democratic party nominee, Joe Biden, will win re-election. Alongside these more result-dependent election-year plays, there are also stocks that, irrespective of who wins in November, stand to gain over the next four years.

Look at these three election-year stocks and see why each may be a buy ahead of November.

Geo Group (GEO)

Source: JosephRouse / Shutterstock

Geo Group (NYSE:GEO) lost big when the Democrats won back the White House in the 2020 Presidential elections. Shortly after his inauguration, President Biden issued an executive order that phased out the use of private prison operators like Geo to manage Federal Bureau of Prisons facilities.

While not affecting all of Geo’s business, this EO was perceived to threaten this debt-laden company’s prospects. As a result, GEO stock dipped to multi-decade lows. However, since 2021, Geo shares have bounced back in a big way, especially this year.

The company has won new contracts with other federal agencies. Geo has also been successfully refinancing its outstanding debt. Yet what’s been really pushing GEO higher has been Trump’s poll numbers, which suggest he could win back the White House. GEO could keep rising if this trend continues, as a Republican administration would likely revoke the EO above.

Lockheed Martin (LMT)

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If you’re looking for one of the bipartisan election-year stocks, look no further than Lockheed Martin (NYSE:LMT). After the election, the occupant of the White House could change, but what will not change is the continued increase in geopolitical strife.

This includes growing tensions between the U.S. and China and the Russia-Ukraine and Mideast conflicts. With defense spending by the U.S. and its Western allies set to keep rising, leading defense contractor Lockheed Martin is likely to continue delivering fiscal results that exceed expectations.

That’s not all. Besides this geopolitical catalyst, which could drive earnings growth and share price appreciation for years, LMT stock is also appealing for its dividend growth track record. Shares currently yield 2.77%, yet LMT’s payouts have increased by an average of 7.93% annually over the past five years.

Sturm Ruger (RGR)

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Sturm Ruger (NYSE:RGR) is one of the election-year stocks to buy if you’re betting on a “blue wave” this November. Firearm sales exploded during the pandemic era, but demand began to decline starting in 2022. Since then, the slowdown has persisted.

This has, in turn, resulted in declining sales and profitability for Sturm Ruger. That’s why RGR stock, which in 2021 briefly hit prices north of $80 per share, has tumbled to around $45 per share today. However, if Biden wins re-election, especially if the Democratic Party wins back the House of Representatives, giving it full control of Congress, we could see a further push for gun control legislation.

Much like during the Obama years, renewed fears of a “gun grab” may emerge. If polls start swinging back in favor of the Democrats, RGR and other firearm stocks could begin to rally again.

On the date of publication, Thomas Niel held a long position in GEO. He did not hold (either directly or indirectly) any positions in the securities mentioned in this article. The opinions expressed in this article are those of the writer, subject to the InvestorPlace.com Publishing Guidelines.

Thomas Niel, contributor for InvestorPlace.com, has been writing single-stock analysis for web-based publications since 2016.

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