email

Get the daily email about stock.

Please Enter Your Email Address:

By opting in you agree to our Privacy Policy. You also agree to receive emails from us and our affiliates. Remember that you can opt-out any time, we hate spam too!

28 Sep, Wednesday
° C

Bull Trader USA

Deep Dive: These are the best-performing S&P 500 and Nasdaq-100 stocks of 2021

The performance of the stock market in 2021 has been nothing short of remarkable, surprising many investors after the dramatic crash-and-recovery cycle of 2020.

A continuing recovery for the world economy meant increased demand and shortages in various industries, including semiconductors and energy. Some of the best-performing stocks were oil and gas producers, as the price of West Texas Crude oil CL00 rose 58%.

The following are lists of the best-performing stocks among the benchmark S&P 500 index SPX, the the S&P 400 Mid Cap Index MID, the S&P Small Cap 600 Index SML and the Nasdaq-100 Index NDX. Then there’s a list showing how all 30 components of the Dow Jones Industrial Average DJIA have performed in 2021.

All performance figures in this article include reinvested dividends. For starters, here’s a chart showing total returns for all the indexes in 2021 through Dec. 29:

FactSet

The S&P 500 had the top spot with a 29.4% return through Dec. 29, although it had pulled back from its high on Nov. 9, when it was up 32% for 2021.

Best-performing S&P 500 stocks of 2021

The S&P 500 is weighted by market capitalization, which means the largest five companies — Apple Inc. AAPL, Microsoft Corp. MSFT, Amazon.com Inc. AMZN, Alphabet Inc GOOGL GOOG and Tesla Inc. TSLA — made up 23% of the SPDR S&P 500 ETF SPY as of the close on Dec. 29.

The gains in 2021 were broad, with 88% of the S&P 500 showing positive returns. Here are its 20 best performers in 2021:

Company
Ticker
Industry
Total Return – 2021 through Dec. 29
Devon Energy Corp.
DVN
Oil & Gas Production
197.1%
Marathon Oil Corp.
MRO
Oil & Gas Production
152.0%
Fortinet Inc.
FTNT
Computer Communications
146.9%
Signature Bank
SBNY
Regional Banks
139.6%
Moderna Inc.
MRNA
Biotechnology
137.3%
Ford Motor Co.
F
Motor Vehicles
135.1%
Bath & Body Works Inc.
BBWI
Retail
132.7%
Nvidia Corp.
NVDA
Semiconductors
130.0%
Diamondback Energy Inc.
FANG
Oil & Gas Production
129.3%
Nucor Corp.
NUE
Steel
118.9%
Gartner Inc.
IT
Internet Software, Services
109.9%
Arista Networks Inc.
ANET
Computer Communications
100.6%
Extra Space Storage Inc.
EXR
Real Estate Investment Trusts
99.8%
APA Corp.
APA
Integrated Oil
98.0%
CF Industries Holdings Inc.
CF
Chemicals: Agricultural
95.0%
Simon Property Group Inc.
SPG
Real Estate Investment Trusts
94.5%
Seagate Technology Holdings PLC
STX
Computer Peripherals
90.9%
EOG Resources Inc.
EOG
Oil & Gas Production
90.9%
Iron Mountain Inc.
IRM
Real Estate Investment Trusts
89.3%
EPAM Systems Inc.
EPAM
Information Technology Services
89.2%
Source: FactSet

You can click the tickers for more about each company. Click here for Tomi Kilgore’s detailed guide to the wealth of information for free on the MarketWatch quote page.

To make any of the lists, a stock had to be traded publicly for all of 2021.

Among the top 20 performers in the S&P 500, five were oil producers.

Ford Motor Co. F was up 135%, ranking sixth on the list, with a low valuation to expected earnings helping justify investors’ approval of at the early stage of its switch to electric cars. Ford’s rival General Motors Co. GM didn’t make the list, as its stock was up “only” 37.4% in 2021 through Dec. 29 (ranking 186th among the S&P 500), while shares of Tesla were up 53.9% for 2021 following their 743% increase in 2020.

Read: Ford Is More Valuable Than GM for the First Time Since 2016

Best-performing midcap stocks

Remember the meme stocks? Of course you do. GameStop Corp GME. led this craze, as traders banded together through the wallstreetbets Reddit channel in early 2021 to bid up the prices of heavily shorted stocks.

Through Jan. 27, shares of GameStop were up 1,744.5% for 2021. Some traders who got in late were burned, as the stock took a dive through Feb. 22. But through Dec. 29, it was up 717% for the year, leading this list of the top 20 performers in the S&P 400 Mid Cap Index:

Company
Ticker
Industry
Total Return – 2021 through Dec. 29.
GameStop Corp. Class A
GME
Electronics/ Appliance Stores
717.0%
Avis Budget Group Inc.
CAR
Finance, Rental, Leasing
453.8%
Synaptics Inc.
SYNA
Semiconductors
203.4%
Alcoa Corp.
AA
Aluminum
159.3%
SiTime Corp.
SITM
Semiconductors
157.3%
Macy’s Inc.
M
Department Stores
142.9%
Olin Corp.
OLN
Industrial Specialties
141.6%
Navient Corp
NAVI
Finance, Rental, Leasing
124.6%
Murphy Oil Corp.
MUR
Oil & Gas Production
122.2%
Louisiana-Pacific Corp.
LPX
Forest Products
114.3%
Dick’s Sporting Goods Inc.
DKS
Specialty Stores
110.4%
Builders FirstSource Inc.
BLDR
Building Products
108.4%
Crocs Inc.
CROX
Apparel/Footwear
107.4%
Tenet Healthcare Corp.
THC
Hospital, Nursing Management
101.4%
Targa Resources Corp.
TRGP
Oil Refining, Marketing
99.0%
National Storage Affiliates Trust
NSA
Real Estate Investment Trusts
97.6%
American Financial Group Inc.
AFG
Property/ Casualty Insurance
97.2%
Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co.
GT
Automotive Aftermarket
96.2%
Life Storage Inc.
LSI
Real Estate Investment Trusts
95.3%
Teradata Corp.
TDC
Software
95.1%
Source: FactSet

Small-cap stocks

A broad small-cap index, such as the Russell 2000 RUT, includes companies that haven’t yet turned profits and even some “pre-revenue” companies counting positive outcomes for binary events, such as regulatory approval of medication.

This list of the year’s 20 best-performing small-cap stocks instead relies on the S&P 600 Small Cap Index, which has a tougher selection criteria for initial inclusion. That includes positive earnings for the most recent quarter and for the sum of the most recent four quarters.

Company
Ticker
Industry
Total Return – 2021 through Dec. 29
Veritiv Corp.
VRTV
Wholesale Distributors
483.9%
SM Energy Co.
SM
Oil & Gas Production
403.1%
Apollo Medical Holdings Inc.
AMEH
Services to the Health Industry
305.6%
Callon Petroleum Co.
CPE
Oil & Gas Production
284.6%
Customers Bancorp Inc.
CUBI
Regional Banks
261.4%
TimkenSteel Corp
TMST
Steel
256.3%
Consol Energy Inc
CEIX
Coal
229.5%
Laredo Petroleum Inc.
LPI
Oil & Gas Production
227.2%
United Natural Foods Inc.
UNFI
Food Distributors
219.9%
Cross Country Healthcare Inc.
CCRN
Personnel Services
218.2%
Chico’s FAS Inc.
CHS
Apparel, Footwear Retail
217.0%
Matador Resources Co.
MTDR
Oil & Gas Production
216.4%
Signet Jewelers Ltd.
SIG
Specialty Stores
215.4%
Thryv Holdings Inc.
THRY
Advertising, Marketing Services
204.6%
Boot Barn Holdings Inc.
BOOT
Apparel, Footwear Retail
189.0%
ArcBest Corp.
ARCB
Trucking
186.7%
Range Resources Corp.
RRC
Oil & Gas Production
183.7%
Perficient Inc.
PRFT
Personnel Services
179.8%
Ranger Oil Corp. Class A
ROCC
Oil & Gas Production
177.8%
Donnelley Financial Solutions Inc.
DFIN
Software
177.7%
Source: FactSet

Turning more to tech: Nasdaq-100

The Nadaq-100 Index includes the largest 100 non-financial stocks by market cap in the full Nasdaq Composite Index COMP. It includes Chinese companies that aren’t included in the S&P 500.

Here are the top 20 performers among the Nasdaq-100 in 2021, including Tesla:

Company
Ticker
Industry
Total Return – 2021 through Dec. 29
Lucid Group Inc.
LCID
Motor Vehicles
269.3%
Fortinet Inc.
FTNT
Computer Communications
146.9%
Moderna Inc.
MRNA
Biotechnology
137.3%
Nvidia Corp.
NVDA
Semiconductors
130.0%
Applied Materials Inc.
AMAT
Industrial Machinery
87.8%
Marvell Technology Inc.
MRVL
Semiconductors
86.8%
Datadog Inc Class A
DDOG
Packaged Software
82.6%
Intuit Inc.
INTU
Packaged Software
71.5%
KLA Corp.
KLAC
Semiconductors
70.0%
Alphabet Inc. Class A
GOOGL
Internet Software/Services
67.4%
Atlassian Corp. PLC Class A
TEAM
Software
63.7%
Zscaler Inc.
ZS
Software
61.8%
Advanced Micro Devices Inc.
AMD
Semiconductors
61.7%
Palo Alto Networks Inc.
PANW
Computer Communications
58.6%
Broadcom Inc.
AVGO
Semiconductors
58.1%
O’Reilly Automotive Inc.
ORLY
Specialty Stores
56.5%
Lam Research Corp.
LRCX
Electronic Production Equipment
55.3%
Microsoft Corp.
MSFT
Packaged Software
55.0%
Tesla Inc
TSLA
Motor Vehicles
53.9%
Xilinx Inc.
XLNX
Semiconductors
53.8%
Source: FactSet

The Dow 30

The Dow Jones Industrial Average brought up the rear in the chart at the top of this article. Home Depot Inc. HD took the top stop in the Dow through Dec. 29, with a 57.9% return for 2021, while Walt Disney Co. DIS was the worst performer, with a 14.5% decline:

Company
Ticker
Industry
Total Return – 2021 through Dec. 29
Home Depot Inc.
HD
Home Improvement Chains
57.9%
Microsoft Corp.
MSFT
Packaged Software
55.0%
Goldman Sachs Group Inc.
GS
Investment Banks, Brokers
49.0%
Cisco Systems Inc.
CSCO
Information Technology Services
47.1%
Chevron Corp.
CVX
Integrated Oil
47.1%
UnitedHealth Group Inc.
UNH
Managed Health Care
46.2%
American Express Co.
AXP
Finance, Rental, Leasing
37.1%
Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc.
WBA
Drugstore Chains
36.0%
Apple Inc.
AAPL
Telecommunications Equipment
36.0%
McDonald’s Corp.
MCD
Restaurants
28.0%
JPMorgan Chase & Co.
JPM
Major Banks
27.9%
Procter & Gamble Co.
PG
Household, Personal Care
21.0%
Nike Inc. Class B
NKE
Apparel, Footwear
20.2%
International Business Machines Corp.
IBM
Information Technology Services
16.5%
Caterpillar Inc.
CAT
Trucks, Construction, Farm Machinery
16.3%
Travelers Companies Inc.
TRV
Multi-Line Insurance
14.8%
Salesforce.com Inc.
CRM
Packaged Software
14.4%
Johnson & Johnson
JNJ
Pharmaceuticals: Major
11.8%
Coca-Cola Co.
KO
Beverages: Non-Alcoholic
10.9%
Dow Inc.
DOW
Chemicals: Specialty
7.5%
Intel Corp.
INTC
Semiconductors
6.7%
3M Co.
MMM
Industrial Conglomerates
5.3%
Merck & Co. Inc.
MRK
Pharmaceuticals: Major
2.2%
Amgen Inc.
AMGN
Biotechnology
2.1%
Walmart Inc.
WMT
Food Retail
0.6%
Visa Inc. Class A
V
Finance, Rental, Leasing
0.4%
Honeywell International Inc.
HON
Industrial Conglomerates
-0.8%
Boeing Co.
BA
Aerospace & Defense
-4.9%
Verizon Communications Inc.
VZ
Major Telecommunications
-6.8%
Walt Disney Co.
DIS
Cable, Satellite TV
-14.5%
Source: FactSet

More year-end stock-market coverage:

Look for the best dividend-paying stocks to stay in the money in 2022 and beyond
These stocks are down at least 20% from 2021 highs, but Wall Street sees them gaining as much as 87% in 2022

Post a Comment