Investors can buy any number of sexy and exciting stocks, like Apple, Snap and Facebook. These are dynamic, growing companies. Apple certainly has made its longtime shareholders a nice profit over the years.
Exciting stocks are inherently more risky, however. Stocks one person would consider "boring" another would consider "reliable," and boring stocks can still be profitable investments. They might not be as much fun to talk about with friends at a cocktail party, but they can put some good money in your wallet. The stocks that follow might be considered boring, but they've made money just the same.
Note that nothing here should be taken as an investment recommendation. Before plunking down your cash, do your research on any investment you are considering. You also might want to find a trustworthy financial advisor.
1. Bogo-Medellin Milling Co. Inc. (BOGMF)
Bogo-Medellin Milling is a sugar processing and manufacturing company. Founded in 1928, the company is headquartered in the Philippines.
The company is listed as the top returning stock in the Morningstar Advisor Workstation database for the 10 years ending March 31, 2017. The fund's total return for the 10 years ending March 31, 2017 averaged over 166 percent annually. The stock is traded over the counter in the U.S.
2. S&P 500 Index Funds
Index mutual funds and ETFs track a market benchmark and should return roughly the same amount as that index after expenses. As an example, the Vanguard 500 Index Fund (VFINX) has delivered an average annual return of 7.39 percent for the 10 years ending March 31, 2017. The S&P 500 Index averaged 7.51 percent annually over the same period. Learn about the S&P 500 index and decide if this is the right investment for you.
3. Rayonier Inc. (RYN)
REITs are stocks structured as trusts that hold mortgages or various types of properties. Rayonier is a timber REIT — it holds timberland. Rayonier shares have averaged a 7.18 percent annual return for the 10 years ending March 31, 2017. The company's dividend yield is 3.47 percent.
4. Hanesbrands Inc. (HBI)
HanesBrands makes apparel under brand names that include Hanes, Champion and Maidenform. Nothing flashy here, but for the 10 years ending March 31, 2017, the stock has averaged an annual return of 11.69 percent, which is over 400 basis points better than the S&P 500 over the same period.
5. Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs)
REITs deliver consistent, reliable returns. As an example of the types of returns that REITs can deliver, the Vanguard REIT Index Fund (VGSIX) has returned an average of 4.84 percent annually over the 10 years ending March 31, 2017. The fund's yield is 4.27 percent.
6. Cohen & Steers Global Income Builder (INB)
Cohen & Steers Global Income Builder is a closed-end mutual fund. In the words of Morningstar: "The Fund seeks total return with high current income through investment in large cap common stocks, real estate securities, utility companies and MLPs issued equity securities and through utilizing a covered call and options strategy."
That is pretty dull stuff compared with some other investments. Yet the fund has returned an average of 15.2 percent annually for the 10 years ending March 31, 2017. The mutual fund is currently selling at a discount to the underlying value of the securities held by the fund.
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7. Balanced Mutual Funds
Balanced mutual funds divide their portfolio between stocks and fixed income and cash. A typical allocation is 60 percent stocks, but some balanced funds might invest more or less in stocks. Learn about the best mutual funds and decide whether a balanced fund is the right choice for you.
As an example, the Vanguard Balanced Index Fund (VBINX) uses a low-cost indexing approach in a balanced 60/40 portfolio. The fund's average annual return over the 10 years ending March 31, 2017, is 6.51 percent.
8. Ingredion (INGR)
Ingredion was formerly called Corn Products. According to Morningstar, it "manufactures and sells starches and sweeteners derived from the wet milling and processing of corn and other starch-based materials to a range of industries. Its product includes starches and sweeteners, animal feed products and edible corn oil."
That sounds boring, but the stock has averaged an annual return of 13.96 percent for the 10 years ending March 31, 2017.
9. Kimberly-Clark (KMB)
Kimberly-Clark is best known as the maker of Kleenex brand products, perhaps as dull of a business as there is, but Kimberly-Clark is a safe stock for the first-time investor. The stock has been pretty exciting, too, averaging an annual return of 9.13 percent over the 10 years ending March 31, 2017.
10. Automatic Data Processing (ADP)
ADP is a payroll processor. That is a function many companies need, but it is not an exciting business. Yet the stock has averaged an annual return of 10.64 for the 10 years ending March 31, 2017.
11. Stericycle Inc. (SRCL)
Stericycle is described as a provider of ancillary services in the compliance and risk management areas, including the disposal of medical waste. That's not very exciting. Yet the stock's average annual return for the 10 years ending March 31, 2017, is 7.36 percent.
12. PowerShares S&P 500 Low Volatility Portfolio (SPLV)
The PowerShares S&P 500 Low Volatility Portfolio is an ETF designed to carve out stocks with low volatility from the S&P 500 Index. So by definition, it is intended to be boring. For the five years ending March 31, 2017, the fund has averaged an annual return of 12.93 percent.
13. Honeywell International (HON)
Honeywell is best known as the maker of thermostats and other control systems. This unflashy business has returned a sparkling 11.87 percent annually for the 10 years ended March 31, 2017.
14. Johnson & Johnson (JNJ)
Johnson & Johnson makes consumer healthcare products, medical devices and pharmaceuticals. It might be a boring industry, but the stock's average annual return over the 10 years ending March 31, 2017, is an exciting 9.44 percent.
15. Vanguard Consumer Staples ETF (VDC)
The Vanguard Consumer Staples ETF invests in the shares of companies that sell basic products that consumers use. The top three holdings in the ETF are household names Procter & Gamble, Coca-Cola and Phillip Morris International. Those are everyday products we all use.
However, there is nothing boring about this ETF's performance. The ETF has averaged an annual 10.51 percent return over the 10 years ending March 31, 2017.
Investments don't have to be linked to flashy companies or products to be profitable. The investments listed above have made money for their shareholders and are not exciting.
As with any list of investments, past performance is no indication of future outcomes. Investors should perform their own due diligence and research before investing any money.
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