If You Had Invested $1,000 in These 15 Stocks in January, Here's How Much You'd Have Now

Author: Rich Duprey | September 19, 2020

Woman and child enjoy roller coaster.

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There have been some extraordinary winners -- and losers -- in 2020

Stocks recently had one of their worst weeks since March, when the coronavirus pandemic appeared and took down the market.

Volatility is emblematic of 2020 as a whole. There have been dramatic gains by stocks as they rallied from the depths of the crash to wipe out all the losses they incurred this year, only to suffer another setback and tumble once more.

The performance of the following 15 stocks mirrors that chaotic scene.

5 Winning Stocks Under $49
We hear it over and over from investors, “I wish I had bought Amazon or Netflix when they were first recommended by the Motley Fool. I’d be sitting on a gold mine!” And it’s true. And while Amazon and Netflix have had a good run, we think these 5 other stocks are screaming buys. And you can buy them now for less than $49 a share! Simply click here to learn how to get your copy of “5 Growth Stocks Under $49” for FREE for a limited time only.

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American Airlines jet

Source: American Airlines

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1. American Airlines

May as well get the bad news out of the way right away. American Airlines (Nasdaq: AAL) saw its business pummeled by COVID-19, as the travel and tourism industries were all but wholly closed during the outbreak. A $1,000 investment in the airline that even Warren Buffett came to regret buying would have turned into $435, easily the worst performance of any of the stocks here.

ALSO READ: Should You Buy or Sell Airline Stocks Right Now?

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Apple iPhone 11

Source: Apple

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2. Apple

An investor would have fared considerably better by investing in Apple (Nasdaq: AAPL), which has been on a tear this year and split its stock 4-for-1 last month, and then ran higher still. Although it's down almost 20% from those highs as the tech sector has been pushing the market down lately, a $1,000 investment in the iPhone maker would be worth $1,526 today.

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Man touching magnifying glass button on floating search bar

Source: Getty Images

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3. Baidu

Chinese search giant Baidu (Nasdaq: BIDU) has pretty much been running in place this year amid a slowdown in China's economy and rising competition from other platforms, resulting in a decline in advertising revenue. In a bid to juice its performance, Baidu announced it intends to invest up to $2 billion in a biotech start-up to deploy its artificial intelligence technology into the healthcare arena. The news didn't do much for Baidu's stock, though, and $1,000 invested on Jan. 1 would have turned into $954 today.

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Caterpillar bulldozer

Source: Caterpillar

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4. Caterpillar

Few probably would have thought a heavy equipment manufacturer relying upon the mining, construction, and transportation industries would be doing better than a tech-heavy search engine, yet here we are. Caterpillar (NYSE: CAT) faces some significant headwinds, and though it's a cyclical stock, it has some tailwinds behind it, too. Housing, for example, is surprisingly robust, and it may be time for metals and mining shops to begin full-scale operations again as pricing improves. It could have been worse for Caterpillar investors, as $1,000 invested at the start of the year would be worth $1,042 today.

5 Winning Stocks Under $49
We hear it over and over from investors, “I wish I had bought Amazon or Netflix when they were first recommended by the Motley Fool. I’d be sitting on a gold mine!” And it’s true. And while Amazon and Netflix have had a good run, we think these 5 other stocks are screaming buys. And you can buy them now for less than $49 a share! Simply click here to learn how to get your copy of “5 Growth Stocks Under $49” for FREE for a limited time only.

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5. Clorox

Clorox (NYSE: CLX) has been one of a handful of companies whose products retailers haven't been able to keep on their shelves, as demand for its disinfecting wipes remain at a fever pitch due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Although Clorox is working overtime and has contracted third-party manufacturers to help produce its wipes, it says shortages will last into the new year. An investor who put $1,000 into the cleaning products specialist would have seen it grow into $1,394.

ALSO READ: These 3 Coronavirus Stocks Could More Than Double by the End of 2020

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Woman with a social media like and a smartphone

Source: Getty Images

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6. Facebook

It's tempting to still think of Facebook (Nasdaq: FB) as simply a social networking site, not least because it's going back to its roots and launching a college-only section for making connections. Facebook Campus will be just for students, and posts will be available only to other college users. But Facebook's real business these days is advertising, and it generated almost $19 billion in the second quarter, an 11% increase over last year. And it has the potential to take an even larger share of the still-growing online ad business. That could be why a $1,000 investment in Facebook to start the year is sitting on just under $1,300 today.

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Ford F-150 electric pickup truck prototype

Source: Ford

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7. Ford

Investors have been waiting for automaker Ford (NYSE: F) to turn around for a good decade now. The company came out of the Great Recession with its engines revving, but it soon stalled and has been on a downward slide ever since. Its stock trades 40% below where it did 10 years ago.

This year, however, investors are counting on electric vehicles to get Ford back on the road again, with a new electric F-150 pickup truck in the works even as its gas-powered version continues to be a cash cow. Although its stock has risen 76% since its March lows, $1,000 invested on Jan. 1 would be worth just $752 today.

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Young person smiling and looking at smartphone

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8. Glu Mobile

Mobile phone game developer Glu Mobile (Nasdaq: GLUU) benefited from people searching for entertainment alternatives during the pandemic lockdown, leading to revenue rising 40% last quarter and bookings for its popular titles jumping 79%. However, as people head back to work, management expects demand to moderate some in the quarters ahead, pushing its stock down some 35% from recent highs. Still, $1,000 invested in Glu Mobile at the start of 2020 would be worth $1,150 today.

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A roomba sits in a carpeted room.

Source: iRobot

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9. iRobot

With people spending more time in their homes because of the pandemic, there should be plenty of time to do household chores. Yet robotic vacuum maker iRobot (Nasdaq: IRBT) continues to clean up, with sales rising 8% in the second quarter despite a near 3% drop in units sold. That's because it continues to convince consumers to buy higher-priced machines, having had an amazing 43% surge in sales of devices priced at $500 or more. Shares of iRobot are up more than 50% in 2020, and $1,000 invested in the Roomba maker at the beginning of the year would be worth $1,521 today.

5 Winning Stocks Under $49
We hear it over and over from investors, “I wish I had bought Amazon or Netflix when they were first recommended by the Motley Fool. I’d be sitting on a gold mine!” And it’s true. And while Amazon and Netflix have had a good run, we think these 5 other stocks are screaming buys. And you can buy them now for less than $49 a share! Simply click here to learn how to get your copy of “5 Growth Stocks Under $49” for FREE for a limited time only.

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Woman exercising in lululemon athletica mirror

Source: Mirror

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10. Lululemon Athletica

lululemon athletica (Nasdaq: LULU) was another company uniquely positioned to take advantage of the stay-at-home orders that arose from the pandemic. Home fitness and casual clothing were married perfectly to the situation. And though the company's sales fell 16% last quarter because its stores were also closed, it enjoyed a 70% hike in direct-to-consumer sales. It also nicely timed its acquisition of connected fitness company Mirror, which makes mirrors outfitted with cameras and microphones for people to obtain a gym-like workout by participating in live fitness classes at home. An investment of $1,000 put into the athleisure clothing leader in January would have become $1,353 today.

ALSO READ: Better Buy: Lululemon vs. Peloton

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A computer chip lit up on a board

Source: Getty Images

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11. Micron Technology

Investors worried about pricing pressure on chipmaker Micron Technology (Nasdaq: MU) have sent its stock down 14% this year. While chip prices are rising again, that's not reflected in Micron's stock, which trades at just 11 times Wall Street's estimates for next year's earnings. Because almost all dynamic random-access memory (DRAM) chips are sold on contract, meaning it lags current pricing, the chipmaker's stock is offering investors a discount. For investors who bought into the stock in January, however, a $1,000 investment would be worth only $857 now.

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5G on a tablet with globes

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12. Skyworks Solutions

The promise of 5G networks melding together the Internet of Things into a cohesive whole ought to propel Skyworks Solutions (Nasdaq: SWKS) to new heights as the next-generation technology rolls out. More than being just about greater speed with greater bandwidth, 5G's premise is it will allow for cars, appliances, machinery, apps, and services to communicate with one another. That bodes well for Skyworks, which generates half its revenue from Apple, as its connectivity chips connect iPhones to the network. A slow year for smartphone sales held Skyworks back earlier this year, but the stock has doubled off its March lows. If investors had placed a $1,000 bet on Jan. 1, it would have turned into $1,126.

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Tesla Gigafactory

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13. Tesla

Tesla (Nasdaq: TSLA) stock did OK for itself last year, rising 25%, though it slightly lagged the market's 29% gain. This year, however, the electric-car maker has turned on the afterburners and is soaring over 300% higher in 2020, compared with the meager 3% gain of the broad market index. At the end of August, though, Tesla had actually been up over 10,000% for the year before suffering its biggest one-day decline ever. Still, $1,000 invested on Jan. 1 is today worth $4,455, a sweet quadrupling of an investor's money.

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Football player in Under Armour clothing

Source: Under Armour

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14. Under Armour

Unlike Lululemon, which seemed to go from strength to strength during the pandemic, Under Armour (NYSE: UA)(NYSE: UAA) has simply gone from bad to worse, as its stock fell and then largely traded sideways. The problem is the athletic and fitness apparel company wasn't a healthy business before the COVID-19 outbreak, and the pandemic did nothing to help the situation. With retailers shut down and sport seasons canceled or delayed, its sales tanked. It wasn't even able to generate direct-to-consumer demand as digital sales fell 13%. With that woeful performance as a backdrop, it's no wonder that $1,000 invested in Under Armour in January has been nearly cut in half to $516 today.

5 Winning Stocks Under $49
We hear it over and over from investors, “I wish I had bought Amazon or Netflix when they were first recommended by the Motley Fool. I’d be sitting on a gold mine!” And it’s true. And while Amazon and Netflix have had a good run, we think these 5 other stocks are screaming buys. And you can buy them now for less than $49 a share! Simply click here to learn how to get your copy of “5 Growth Stocks Under $49” for FREE for a limited time only.

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House for sale seen through frame of a tablet

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15. Zillow

A global healthcare crisis isn't an obvious time to buy a house, and real estate information provider Zillow (Nasdaq: Z) saw that reflected in its stock, which lost about 70% of its value at the onset of the pandemic. However, housing has come back strong since, and Zillow has ridden the wave higher, with shares of the property specialist more than quadrupling in value. The company even began buying homes again through its Zillow Offers program, a sign it is confident in the health of the market. That could be why $1,000 put into its stock in January is worth $1,859 today.

ALSO READ: 18 Stocks Cashing In on the Suburbanization Trend

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Green arrow rising over 2020

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Ready to reap a windfall

On New Year's Day this year, there was no way to know the havoc the coronavirus pandemic would wreak on the economy and stocks. But those companies with underlying resiliency have rebounded from the initial shock and gone on to power investor returns.

The losers this year aren't necessarily down and out for good, but investors who put $1,000 into them at the start of the year might want to consider what it was that made the winners shine through it all.

Randi Zuckerberg, a former director of market development and spokeswoman for Facebook and sister to its CEO, Mark Zuckerberg, is a member of The Motley Fool's board of directors. Rich Duprey has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool owns shares of and recommends Apple, Baidu, Facebook, iRobot, Lululemon Athletica, Skyworks Solutions, Tesla, Under Armour (A Shares), Under Armour (C Shares), and Zillow Group (C shares). The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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