Monday, March 28, 2016

Do 'Bad' Stocks Do Better than 'Good' Stocks?

Investors who aren't concerned about what businesses their investments are in might want to consider investing in 'bad' stocks, often referred to as 'vice stocks' or 'sin stocks', and now are referred to as the supposedly politically correct term, 'barrier stocks.' They are now called that because the industries have a barrier to entry. The industries include tobacco, alcohol, gambling, defense, adult entertainment, and other businesses that have negative connotations by many investors.

As a matter of fact, there is a mutual fund that used to be called the Vice Fund, but is now called the USA Mutuals Barrier Investor

Fund. (VICEX). Over the last year, the fund has significantly outperformed the S&P 500, rising 3.26% versus a drop of 2.36% for the S&P. Even over five years and ten years, the fund has outperformed the stock market in general. Year-to-date, the fund is up 3.69% versus a loss in the S&P.

If you are wondering what sort of stocks are in the Barrier Fund portfolio, here are the top eight holding:

Philip Morris International Inc (PM)
Reynolds American Inc (RAI)
Las Vegas Sands Corp. (LVS)
Altria Group, Inc. (MO)
MGM Resorts International (MGM)
Raytheon Company (RTN)
Wynn Resorts (WYNN)
General Dynamics Corp (GD)

Each of these stocks represent anywhere from 3% to 6% of the portfolio.

Rydex Leisure (RYLIX) is a fund that owns several stocks that are considered 'bad' or not so good, such as Philip Morris, Altria, and Reynolds American. It also owns McDonald's (MCD) as some investors consider fast food to be not-so-good.

Another fund that has occasionally been put in the vice fund category includes Fidelity Select Consumer Staples (FDFAX), which owns British American Tobacco, Reynolds American, and Altria. It also owns Pepsico (PEP) and Coca Cola (KO), which many consider not-so-good due to the sale of sugary drinks.

If you are not concerned about how your investment funds are used, buying the 'bad' stocks might be a 'good' strategy.

Disclosure: Author owns MCD, PEP, & KO. 


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