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Expecting a $1,200 Coronavirus Check? These 3 Stocks Should Bounce Big.

By Dan Caplinger - Mar 29, 2020 at 9:05AM

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If you don't need it right now, you can put that money to work for the long run.

The coronavirus pandemic has transformed the world, and it's played havoc with investors' portfolios. But opportunistic investors look past the pain and instead concentrate on the big profits that tomorrow can bring. When stock prices fall, it can turn great companies into bargain buys -- and open the door to truly life-changing returns.

Lawmakers have agreed on a coronavirus stimulus proposal that should start sending money to the vast majority of Americans in the near future. The typical coronavirus check will be for $1,200 per adult, with those with families set to get an additional $500 per child.

Plenty of people need to put that money toward their current financial needs, and there's nothing wrong with that at all. If you're fortunate enough to have $1,200 or more coming but don't need it for your short-term finances, then these three stocks are shaping up to recover strongly from the coronavirus bear market and keep delivering the great returns they've given their long-term shareholders.

Person wearing a hat behind fanned-out $100 bills.

Image source: Getty Images.

1. Mastercard

Mastercard (MA 1.97%) has been an important player in the payment processing space for decades, with its worldwide network allowing people to make purchases across the globe. Yet as the coronavirus pandemic has worsened, it's raised concerns about whether people will be willing or able to keep spending at the levels at which they've spent money in the past. That's potentially bad news for Mastercard, which relies on payment volume for the fee revenue that it collects from its merchants. Fears about the future sent Mastercard stock down as much as 40% at the depths of the downturn, and it's still off its recent highs by 25%.

Mastercard will be a direct beneficiary of the $1,200 coronavirus checks that hundreds of millions of Americans are set to receive. With more money available, consumers will feel more comfortable spending money, and that'll feed more payment volume into Mastercard's network. That's a scene that's likely to repeat in other countries as well, and with its global scope, Mastercard will be in a perfect position to capitalize when pent-up demand leads to greater purchase activity once the coronavirus crisis is over.

2. Netflix

Netflix (NFLX 6.16%) has been on many investors' watchlists lately, as the video streaming company is playing a vital role in keeping millions of people who are dealing with lockdowns and shelter-in-place orders entertained. Trends toward greater numbers of subscribers have been helping Netflix for years now, but the impact of the coronavirus on its business could end up accelerating some of that subscriber growth -- especially if social distancing initiatives persist even after the worst of the pandemic is behind us.

Netflix stock hasn't fallen as much as many other stocks, with maximum declines coming in at less than 25%. The streaming giant's share price is now only 12% below its recent high. It's probable, though, that Netflix's quarterly numbers will hold up a whole lot better than most companies in the market. If that happens, it could spur an even larger group of shareholders to buy into the entertainment stock -- and reward those who were early in anticipating Netflix's near-term success.

3. Shopify

The internet revolution hasn't been confined to people's personal lives. E-commerce has become a key part of how millions of small businesses make money, and Shopify (SHOP 10.50%) has been an essential facilitator in helping many of those businesses build out a presence on the internet and handle the various functions necessary for e-commerce success.

Like many tech stocks, Shopify shares were down sharply over the past month, falling as much as 40% at the depths of the recent downturn. Since then, though, it's pared about half of those losses thus far. Hard-hit businesses have realized that with their having to shut down much of their in-store operations, e-commerce could be the only way to survive the coronavirus crisis. That should translate into growing business for Shopify, and once they see the value of the services that the company provides, business clients will probably stay on for the long haul.

Make the most of your money

If you're fortunate enough to get a coronavirus check and don't need the $1,200 to spend right now, then these three stocks are worth a close look. If things play out well for them, then they could end up turning $1,200 into a whole lot more over the long run.

Dan Caplinger has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool owns shares of and recommends Mastercard, Netflix, and Shopify. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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Stocks Mentioned

Netflix, Inc. Stock Quote
Netflix, Inc.
$244.11 (6.16%) $14.17
Mastercard Incorporated Stock Quote
Mastercard Incorporated
$353.38 (1.97%) $6.84
Shopify Inc. Stock Quote
Shopify Inc.
$40.61 (10.50%) $3.86

*Average returns of all recommendations since inception. Cost basis and return based on previous market day close.

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