3 "Buy Now" Stocks From the World's Greatest Retirement Portfolio

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It's been 18 months since I introduced the World's Greatest Retirement Portfolio to Foolish readers. This was, has been, and will continue to be my way of helping the world to invest better. Putting my money where my mouth is, I pledged to put at least $4,000 behind each stock and attempt to hold each one for at least three years -- though I've already broken that promise.

Since I began, the market has returned 10.8%, not bad at all by historical measures. But this portfolio has lived up to its moniker as the "World's Greatest," outperforming the market by 16 percentage points.

Below, I'll show you why it's doing so well, offer up three stocks that I think are excellent buys right now, and offer access to a premium report that offers deeper analysis than I can cover in one article.


Publication Date


Vs. S&P 500


June 26,2011




June 28, 2011



Baidu*  (NASDAQ: BIDU  )

Sept. 15, 2012



Intuitive Surgical

July 25, 2011



National Oilwell Varco 

July 28, 2011




June 21, 2011



Whole Foods (NASDAQ: WFM  )

July 5, 2011



July 12, 2011



Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL  )

June 30, 2011



Johnson & Johnson 

Aug. 1, 2011








Source:, all returns as of market close Dec. 4, 2012. *Returns are for position in ATVI held from July 15, 2011, to Sept. 9, 2012, and transferred over to BIDU on Sept. 15, 2012.

Most of the portfolio is actually down since last month, with Baidu leading the way. That hasn't stopped some companies from performing well, including Amazon, which is beating the market for the first time since this portfolio began. It can likely thank -- in part -- an impressive Black Friday for its performance.

But though Amazon is doing well, it didn't make my list of four excellent buy opportunities for the month. Read below to see which companies garnered that honor.

3 best buys right now
First on the list is the aforementioned Baidu. It seems that no matter what happens, investors aren't feeling very optimistic about the future of China's largest search engine. The company has shown impressive growth over the past year, and still holds the lion's share of the search market in China.

First, competition from Qihoo 360 scared investors away; now, reports that the SEC is investigating the Chinese branches of the Big Four auditors have the market worried that we've been fed bad numbers. If that's true, there's clearly a bigger issue to be worried about. But for now, trading at just 15 times estimated earnings for 2013, Baidu looks like a pretty good deal.

Second on my list is Apple. I know that I recently wrote  about why I'm being cautious with the company, but that was more because it had grown to such a large part of my portfolio, not because it's a bad company to own. If you don't own shares of the iGiant yet, now would be a good time to start considering. As fellow Fool Evan Niu has shown, a lot of Apple bears aren't showing very good reasoning with their math. I think that, at less than 10 times expected earnings for 2013, Apple is a good buy.

Finally, we have Whole Foods. I know that many people think the stock looks pretty pricey, and with it currently at 37 times earnings, I don't blame them for thinking so. But consider this simple maxim: The highest-quality companies will always trade for a premium. Whole Foods is just over one-third of the way to reaching its 1,000-store goal, and the previous quarter showed same-store sales increasing 8.5%. That's impressive for any company, let alone a grocery store.

Dig deeper
There's only so much I can cover in one short article about all of these opportunities.  If you'd like to read further about Baidu, which is personally the most tempting of the three choices I've offered up, I suggest you check out our special premium report on the company. The report breaks down the dominant Chinese search provider's strengths and weaknesses, and comes with a full year of updates as changes occur. Just click here to access it now.

Read/Post Comments (3) | Recommend This Article (4)

Comments from our Foolish Readers

Help us keep this a respectfully Foolish area! This is a place for our readers to discuss, debate, and learn more about the Foolish investing topic you read about above. Help us keep it clean and safe. If you believe a comment is abusive or otherwise violates our Fool's Rules, please report it via the Report this Comment Report this Comment icon found on every comment.

  • Report this Comment On December 05, 2012, at 4:28 PM, deasystems wrote:

    The article states that, "...The highest-quality companies will always trade for a premium."

    ...except for the highest of the high quality companies, Apple, which is trading for a huge discount. Go figure...

  • Report this Comment On December 06, 2012, at 8:42 AM, perpetuitas wrote:

    WFM's last EPS is 2.22 and the stock carries a 36.82 P/E.

    AAPL's last EPS is 44.16 and the stock carries a 12.20 P/E.

    Get a clue. NOTHING speaks QUALITY like cash in the bank. Apple has more than almost anyone. There price to debt ratio is amazing, they make 40+ dollars per share every quarter!

    Nothing raises my ire more than believing the market isn't manipulated based on whims rather than sound financials. This article does little to dispel the myth that stocks can be picked based on anything.

    Apple should be priced in at least 15 p/e based on competitors alone, which would put the stock price up there closer to 1k.

    So what do you base your statement of "quality" on?

    At a similar P/E as WFM, AAPL would be priced around 1500/share.

    Or as GOOG, AAPL would be priced near 1k/share.

    Or even as MSFT, AAPL's stock would be 635/share.

    This beating AAPL has taken is ludicrous. And nope, I'm not railing about it because I'm in trouble, over extended on AAPL ... it's just common sense.

  • Report this Comment On January 26, 2013, at 9:47 AM, TheOracle2013 wrote:

    AAPL down 24% since your "best buy" pick. Message to anyone reading these things - noone can predict the future and buying individual stocks is tantamount to gambling! The only sensible way to invest the money you really need is to buy a balanced (or balanced portfolio of) low-cost, passive index fund that you intend to hold for the long term.

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