Robinhood investors tend to be more daring in their investing approaches than the average investor. From airline stocks to cruise ship stocks and even insolvent companies like rental car giant Hertz, there's plenty of appetite for risk on the Robinhood trading platform. But that doesn't mean all the popular stocks among Robinhood investors are bad investments you should avoid if you're more safety-oriented.
There are many stocks in the Robinhood top 100 list that are calculated risks worth taking. Both of the stocks listed below are struggling this year, but they could soar and ultimately produce great returns for investors who are willing to hang on for at least a few years.
1. Canopy Growth
Canopy Growth (CGC -7.10%) regularly finds itself, along with many other cannabis stocks, on the Robinhood Top 100 list. Retail investors love the cannabis industry for its growth potential. However, Canopy Growth's focus is more on its bottom line these days than it is on growth.
David Klein, the company's new CEO, who has come over from alcohol beverage maker Constellation Brands, a key investor in the Ontario-based pot producer, calls this new fiscal year one of "transition" as Canopy Growth looks to strengthen its business.
In fiscal 2020, the pot producer incurred a record net loss of 1.3 billion Canadian dollars. Impairment and restructuring charges of CA$743 million were responsible for the bulk of the loss.
The company releases its next quarterly results on Monday, August 10. But regardless of how those numbers look, they won't be enough to fix what's wrong with the stock today. Canopy Growth has a long road ahead to prove to investors that it can grow without burning through cash and resources while accumulating losses. The company received a $4 billion investment from Constellation Brands in 2018, and that's one of the reasons the stock's still in a good position today -- it's got plenty of cash on the books. On March 31, it reported cash and cash equivalents of CA$1.3 billion. Constellation even upped its stake in Canopy to 38.6% in May by exercising warrants.
The good news is that with cash on hand and a turnaround strategy in place, Canopy Growth may be on the right track to becoming a more worthy stock. Klein's been busy this year, shutting down facilities, laying off staff, and even pulling the company out of South Africa and Lesotho where it had operations. And these moves are likely just the beginning of cost cutting.
It was only a year ago that Canopy Growth's stock was trading at more than $30 a share, and it wouldn't be unrealistic for it to get back to that level if Klein can strengthen the company's financials. Don't count Canopy out yet. Robinhood investors certainly haven't.
Walt Disney (DIS -3.22%) is normally a safe hold, especially over the long term. But the COVID-19 pandemic has brought a lot of uncertainty about how long it will impact businesses, particularly those that rely on travel and in-person entertainment. Until the economy returns to where it was before the pandemic, Disney faces the risk that lockdowns and travel restrictions will keep negatively impacting its business.
The company reported its third-quarter results on August 4. For the three-month period ending June 27, Disney incurred a net loss of $4.7 billion. Revenue of $11.8 billion was just 58% of the $20.3 billion the company reported in the prior-year period. But Q3 also included two months -- April and May -- when COVID-19 lockdowns shut down many businesses and kept many people at home. The company's revenue from its parks, experiences, and products segment, which a year ago made up about one-third of Disney's total sales, declined by 85% from the prior-year period.
The longer the COVID-19 pandemic sticks around and weighs down the economy, the more likely it is that Disney's sales, and the company's stock price, will suffer. But there are still positives to take away from the results. Disney+, its streaming service that launched in November 2019, continues to be a bright spot. In Q3, there were 57.5 million paid subscribers of the service, which is up an incredible 72% from the second quarter.
Despite the risk, Disney is not a brand to bet against. The California-based company's proven it can create and deliver quality content time and time again that consumers love. And buying its stock at a reduced price today can be a great way to set yourself up for some strong returns once the pandemic and its consequences subside. Like many blue-chip stocks, Disney's likely to recover from the pain brought by COVID-19 headwinds; the only question is how long it'll take.
Which stock is the better buy today?
Here's how both of these stocks are doing compared to the S&P 500:
Both Disney and Canopy are underperforming the index, which isn't surprising as they're contrarian bets today.
Which one you should invest in depends on your risk tolerance. Disney is the safer stock to invest in over the long haul, but Canopy Growth has much more potential, especially if the U.S. eventually legalizes marijuana and the Canadian pot producer can tap into that market. It's a riskier investment, but its potential returns could more than make up for that in the long run.