When the coronavirus pandemic first started to spread in February 2020, the stock market started to nosedive. From all-time record highs, many stocks lost 30% or more. Many investors became jittery, and it looked as though a long bear market might ensue. The Federal Reserve quickly dropped interest rates to near zero, and stocks began to climb again. By the time August hit, the market approached new highs, ending one of the shortest bear markets in history. Much of the growth came from technology stocks.
According to the experts at Money Morning, “Three in four people are using more streaming services since the coronavirus came to the U.S and the average person has logins to four streaming services.” This positions streaming services like Netflix for future success. Indeed, the price of Netflix stock increased more than 80% between February and September. Because of its catalog of classic shows and movies and its proprietary content, this streaming giant should be able to have a great deal of flexibility in slowly raising its prices into the future.
The Microsoft Windows operating system is nearly ubiquitous outside of Apple users. Most PCs come with Windows. Microsoft’s stock was fairly stable for several years, but in recent years, it’s seen a pretty impressive run. Instead of selling a lifetime license to run its popular Office suite of programs, this tech giant started charging recurring fees to access popular programs like Word, Excel and PowerPoint. Additionally, Microsoft’s cloud service offers a subscription. These recurring charges do much to supplement the company’s bottom line.
Another of many great tech stocks for 2020 is Apple. The price of the stock has pulled back a bit, but it nearly tripled between mid-March and September 1. The price of the stock is probably a bit stretched, but it’s still a solid company. Much of the increase in the stock price came after Apple announced a 4-for-1 stock split. If the price drops much, Apple will become a very attractive buy. There is no doubt that it is a cash machine.
Another stock that saw a massive price increase in 2020 is Tesla. While vehicles are a major contributor to Tesla’s bottom line, the company is also leading the way in terms of battery storage and information technology. It’s finally showing a regular profit, and the future looks bright for Elon Musk’s brainchild as its production capabilities are about to ramp up with multiple new plants about to open in the near future.
The remote meeting company Zoom has been a surprising success in 2020. From a price in the $68 range at the beginning of the year, it hit a recent high in excess of $450. As people moved online for remote working arrangements because of COVID-19, Zoom was a popular conferencing option. Its price is currently stretched, but it’s likely that remote work will become more popular even after the fear of the coronavirus subsides over time. This should lead to a bright future for Zoom.
There is no doubt that tech stocks have led the recent market recovery. Although many of their valuations are stretched currently, these stocks have been among the most successful thus far in 2020.