Everyone likes to support a hometown hero and Canada’s provinces boast many success stories. Today, we take a look at a few exciting opportunities are based in Ontario. Unlike some of the other provinces, Ontario is ripe with options for investors.
Our top pick in the banking sector is the nation’s largest, the Royal Bank of Canada (TSX: RY)(NYSE: RY). The bank has just posted its second quarter in a row with over $2 billion in profits. In the past quarter RBC showed a 15% increase over last year ending the quarter at $2.2 billion ($1.47 per share) in profits, and year to date profits is at $4.2 billion ($2.85 per share).
A driving force behind the bank’s gains is its wealth management division, which grew by 25% in the quarter compared to an 18% increase in the previous year. RBC is well diversified and is holding its place at number one with a firm grip. Investors are in turn being rewarded for this by a $2.84 annual dividend, and by the almost guaranteed growth of a stock that just hit a new all-time high.
Next up is Toronto-based insurance provider Sun Life Financial (TSX: SLF)(NYSE: SLF). The company took a slight dip of $10 million in profits during the previous quarter, but the company’s financials are in good order. Assets under management hit a new record with $671 billion on file, up from $640 billion this time last year. Canadian insurance sales climbed by 38% in the quarter and part of the drop in profit was in part to an interest rate change in Asia. The stock is trading just below its price target of $40.90 and its 52-week high of $40.15, closing Thursday at $37.21. Sun Life offers a $1.44 annual dividend, which is richer than several of its competitors.
Magna International (TSX: MG)(NYSE: MGA) has had a rather impressive six months, the stock has gone from $83.00 in December to its closing price on Thursday of $109.68. While product demand in Canada has dropped off, growth in the U.S., Mexico and most importantly China has been more than enough to offset the losses. Growth in China is expected to double in the coming years, with $2.3 billion in sales expected by 2016. The dividend has grown by 33% in the past five years, now offering an annual payout of $1.66 with a 1.5% yield.
Humble label and packaging manufacturer CCL Industries (TSX: CCL.B) has been growing steadily under the radar for a few years now. The stock’s 52-week range has been a steady climb from $60.20 in June to $109.56 a couple of weeks ago. CCL just closed at $105.00 and has a price target of $110.00. CCL has been busy picking up new assets, such as the office and consumer solutions division of Avery Dennison.
These acquisitions helped the company post a 67% increase in year over year sales in the previous quarter. Added to that a 54% increase in net profits, which works out to $1.51 per share, these gains are allowing the company to pay out an annual dividend of $1.00. Not too shabby for a company that makes stickers, aluminum cans and plastic containers for big name brands.
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Fool contributor Cameron Conway does not own shares in any of the companies mentioned. Magna is a recommedation of Stock Advisor Canada.