Ask a Fool: Where Is 3-D Printing Really Headed, and Who Benefits?

Will 3-D printing really live up to all the potential it's hyped up to have?

Jan 29, 2014 at 7:57PM

In this video as part of The Motley Fool's "Ask a Fool" series, Fool industrials analyst Blake Bos takes a question from a Fool reader, who asks: "Where is 3-D printing really headed? With all the bloated stock pricing hype over with, where is this technology really going, and what areas of the industry stand to benefit the most?"

Blake notes that additive manufacturing, or 3-D printing, is primarily suited at the moment for prototyping and production applications where a company is producing really expensive parts at low volume. He also says that currently more than 70% of installed 3-D printers are for plastic, so industrial printers for metal applications are still far from common. Blake lists several additive manufacturing companies with a presence in metal printing that investors may want to consider as metal printers begin to be more heavily utilized.

As far as who benefits, Blake looks at the orthopedics and prosthetics spaces as the nearest-term beneficiaries and tells investors why Smith and Nephew (NYSE:SNN) and Stryker (NYSE:SYK) could be two interesting companies to consider in these areas today. He also looks at the aerospace sector because of its high-value, low-volume economics, and gives investors his picks for who could benefit there.

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Blake Bos has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends and owns shares of 3D Systems. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools don't all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

4 in 5 Americans Are Ignoring Buffett's Warning

Don't be one of them.

Jun 12, 2015 at 5:01PM

Admitting fear is difficult.

So you can imagine how shocked I was to find out Warren Buffett recently told a select number of investors about the cutting-edge technology that's keeping him awake at night.

This past May, The Motley Fool sent 8 of its best stock analysts to Omaha, Nebraska to attend the Berkshire Hathaway annual shareholder meeting. CEO Warren Buffett and Vice Chairman Charlie Munger fielded questions for nearly 6 hours.
The catch was: Attendees weren't allowed to record any of it. No audio. No video. 

Our team of analysts wrote down every single word Buffett and Munger uttered. Over 16,000 words. But only two words stood out to me as I read the detailed transcript of the event: "Real threat."

That's how Buffett responded when asked about this emerging market that is already expected to be worth more than $2 trillion in the U.S. alone. Google has already put some of its best engineers behind the technology powering this trend. 

The amazing thing is, while Buffett may be nervous, the rest of us can invest in this new industry BEFORE the old money realizes what hit them.

KPMG advises we're "on the cusp of revolutionary change" coming much "sooner than you think."

Even one legendary MIT professor had to recant his position that the technology was "beyond the capability of computer science." (He recently confessed to The Wall Street Journal that he's now a believer and amazed "how quickly this technology caught on.")

Yet according to one J.D. Power and Associates survey, only 1 in 5 Americans are even interested in this technology, much less ready to invest in it. Needless to say, you haven't missed your window of opportunity. 

Think about how many amazing technologies you've watched soar to new heights while you kick yourself thinking, "I knew about that technology before everyone was talking about it, but I just sat on my hands." 

Don't let that happen again. This time, it should be your family telling you, "I can't believe you knew about and invested in that technology so early on."

That's why I hope you take just a few minutes to access the exclusive research our team of analysts has put together on this industry and the one stock positioned to capitalize on this major shift.

Click here to learn about this incredible technology before Buffett stops being scared and starts buying!

David Hanson owns shares of Berkshire Hathaway and American Express. The Motley Fool recommends and owns shares of Berkshire Hathaway, Google, and Coca-Cola.We Fools don't all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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