In a situation that appears to be unprecedented, the U.S. is now in cold wars with two other, major powers: Russia and China. And given the huge importance of technology in today’s world, America is also fighting a tech cold war with both of those nations.
The struggle has multiple components. Washington is taking steps to build up the technical capabilities of its military and that of its allies, while also seeking to protect America from cybersecurity threats.
There are many stocks that investors should consider buying to play the tech cold war. Here are seven of the best choices.
|Palo Alto Networks
|Booz Allen Hamilton
Elbit Systems (ESLT)
Israel’s Elbit Systems (NASDAQ:ESLT) seems to be benefiting a great deal from the world’s increased tensions. In just the last month, the company won two deals worth a cumulative $240 million to upgrade tanks for a single country.
It won a roughly $76 million contract to provide electronic warfare training capability to an Asian nation, and the U.S. Army renewed a previous deal worth as much as $49 million.
ESLT has helped to develop the world’s first inexpensive missile defense system. In the longer term, the product should generate a tremendous amount of revenue for Elbit.
Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing (TSM)
As the largest chip maker in the world that obtains only 10% of its revenue from China, TSM stock is a prime candidate to attract many of those investors.
What’s more, TSMC has largely avoided selling products for crypto mining, making it less exposed to the ongoing crypto winter.
Specializing in missiles and aerospace systems, Raytheon (NYSE:RTX) has already benefited significantly from the war in Ukraine and that trend is likely to continue.
For example, on Aug. 26 the company received a $182 million deal from the U.S. for the National Advanced Surface-to-Air Missile System.
“These systems are expected to be provided to Ukraine in response to that nation’s need to defend against advanced air threats,” Raytheon reported.
Raytheon is likely to make a great deal of money by selling such systems to America’s Central and Eastern European allies.
In Q2, Raytheon’s revenue came in at $16.3 billion, up from $15.88 billion during the same period a year earlier, while its operating income climbed to $1.81 billion from $1.75 billion.
Palo Alto (PANW)
The Cold War between Russia and the U.S. could very well spur Moscow to launch cyberattacks against the U.S. government and American companies.
In such an environment, investing in one of America’s top cybersecurity companies, Palo Alto Networks (NASDAQ:PANW), makes a great deal of sense. PANW specializes in securing data in the cloud, which of course has become very widely used by companies and governments in recent years.
PANW offers products that are suitable for governments, schools, and, of course, companies, making it well-positioned to benefit from the current environment.
In the company’s last reported quarter, its overall sales jumped 27% year over year to $1.6 billion while it generated $254 million of net income, excluding certain items.
Booz Allen Hamilton (BAH)
Booz Allen Hamilton (NYSE:BAH) is another tech company that’s very well-positioned to benefit from increased spending on cybersecurity. It’s one of the world’s largest cybersecurity solution providers.
Booz Allen specializes in selling cybersecurity products that are delivered by other companies. Nearly every U.S. federal, defense, and intelligence agency uses its services.
The U.S. government is poised to spend a huge $15.6 billion on cybersecurity in its upcoming fiscal year. Expect Booz Allen to get a significant portion of those funds.
In the company’s last reported quarter, its top line jumped 13% YOY, while its net income, excluding “billable expenses,” jumped a very impressive 50% to $138 million.
The forward price-earnings ratio of BAH stock is a reasonable 19.4 [$95 share price divided by 4.88 average EPS estimate for next year]
BlackBerry (NYSE:BB) is exceptionally well-positioned to benefit from the increased emphasis on cybersecurity.
BB has obtained the coveted FedRAMP authorization from the federal government. Moreover, BlackBerry reports that its ” Government Mobility Suite” has already been adopted by many U.S. Federal Agencies leaving the company poised to benefit from DC’s heavy spending on cybersecurity.
Also noteworthy is that BlackBerry’s highly secure QNX operating system is expanding fairly rapidly into sectors beyond its core automotive business.
For example, in its last reported quarter, BB had five design wins for QNX outside of the auto market. BB CEO John Chen reported that more medical companies are starting to use QNX.
Over the longer term, as worries about cyberattacks grow, the number of sales generated by QNX in both auto and non-auto markets should surge.
BB is looking to increase its overall revenue from $655 million in its completed fiscal 2022 to $886 million in FY25. The company expects to generate positive cash flow “beginning in FY25.”
Increasing my confidence in Leidos’ outlook, the company has recently announced a number of huge contract wins with Washington.
For example, on July 27, the company disclosed that it had obtained a $53 million deal from the U.S. Navy.
Much more impressively, on Aug. 23, the company announced that it had received a deal worth as much as $358 million from the Navy to build a medium-size unmanned undersea vehicle.
The latter agreement shows that the Pentagon trusts Leidos to work on its most sensitive, complicated projects.
In Q2, Leidos’ revenue climbed 4% YOY to $3.6 billion, while it generated free cash flow of $19 million. The company’s huge backlog also rose 4% YOY, coming in at $34.7 billion.
On the date of publication, Larry Ramer was long ESLT and BB.