There are a lot of options to invest in when it comes to putting your money into the stock market. Aside from investing in Motley Fool stock picks, mutual funds, or exchange-traded funds, investors have to choose between a variety of asset classes. The good news is that the starting point for all investors is blue-chip stocks.
Why should blue-chip stocks be your starting point when creating a diversified portfolio? And what exactly defines blue-chip stocks? In this post, I am going to answer these questions and more. By the time you are finished reading, you will have a solid understanding of this investment term and be ready to include blue chips stocks into your portfolio.
What Is A Blue Chip Stock?
So what exactly is a blue-chip stock? These stocks tend to be large companies that have been around for a long time. They also are in the mature stage of the business life cycle. This means they have predictable income and sales and there are rarely any surprises.
Here are a few names of blue-chip stocks that will help you to better understand what qualifies as one.
As you can see, blue-chip stocks tend to be household names for the most part. Now that you have a better idea of what a blue-chip stock is, let’s dive into why they should be your first investment.
3 Reasons Blue Chip Stocks Should Be Your First Investment
#1. Steady Growth
Because blue-chip stocks are mature companies that have a solid balance sheet, they are good at providing steady and consistent growth. This is because their product lines and sales are established. People know and like their products and will continue to do so.
On the other hand, you have small-cap stocks. These companies are just starting out, so their earnings and revenues can swing wildly from one quarter to the next and from year to year. As a result, many investment professionals recommend limiting the amount of money you invest in small-cap stocks.
In fact, all professionals agree that blue-chip stocks should be the foundation of a portfolio. Companies like The Motley Fool regularly recommend blue-chip stocks in addition to some that are less well-known.
Recommended Stock Investing Posts:
- PE Ratio: The Best Market Timing Tool of All?
- How to Use Behavioral Finance to Your Investing Advantage
- Investment Diversification: 5 Risky Mistakes to Avoid
- 2 Easy Ways to Use Arbitrage to Make Money in the Stock Market
- Pros and Cons To Investing In The Stock Market Today
- A Review of The Intelligent Investor by Benjamin Graham
- Advantages of Trading Small Cap Stocks
- Top 3 Bollinger Bands Trading Strategies
#2. Good Source Of Income
Another great reason to start investing in blue-chip stocks is because of the income, or dividends they pay out. Since these companies are mature in the growth cycle, they tend to not need a lot of cash reinvested in order for the business to grow.
Because of this, many decide to reward shareholders by paying out ever-increasing dividends. These dividend payments only increase the return a shareholder earns by investing in these companies.
As of this writing, the average dividend yield of blue-chip stocks is just under 2%. The higher the yield, the more dividend income you can expect to earn. But having a high dividend yield isn’t always a good thing.
The final benefit of investing in blue-chip stocks is stability. Earlier I mentioned how large, mature companies tend to not have wild earnings and revenue numbers from year to year. But there is another advantage to the stability of earnings that large-cap companies offer.
This is stock price stability. When the market drops, many times large company stocks tend to drop less than other stocks. This is because investors can rely on these companies to continue to churn a profit.
For example, if a major recession hits and consumers stop buying, a small company with few sales could easily go out of business if sales drop too far. But a large company does not risk going out of business when sales decline. Yes, sales will slow for these companies during a recession, but not to the tune of investors worrying if the company can survive.
As a result, investors flock to the safety of blue-chip stocks, which helps to limit some of the losses during a market collapse.
At the end of the day, if you are building an investment portfolio, you have to start off by investing in blue-chip stocks. I know most people want the sexy returns that small companies offer, but you cannot build a sustainable long-term portfolio by only investing in small company stocks.
You are simply taking on too much risk. Do yourself and your finances a favor and start by investing in blue-chip stocks and then building a diversified Betterment portfolio around these holdings.