The trade spat between the United States and Canada is yet another reminder of the challenges faced by investors in a shifting geopolitical landscape. Whether or not these tariffs are temporary, investors should prepare for the threat of future trade wars.
Global growth roared to the highest levels seen since the financial crisis in 2017, but the International Monetary Fund (IMF) has warned that this will not last. Canada’s GDP is expected to dip below 2% in the beginning of the next decade. The prospect of slower growth will only intensify economic competition between states. The return of great power competition may very well lead to a bout of protectionism not seen since the pre-WWII era.
With that in mind, investors should stash high-yield equities that will be resistant to shocks in their portfolios. Today we’ll look at four stocks that you should consider today.
National Bank of Canada (TSX:NA)
National Bank is the sixth-largest of the Big Six Canadian banks. Its stock was up over 15% year-over-year as of close on June 6. The bank released its second-quarter results on May 30.
Net income rose 13% year-over-year to $547 million, and diluted earnings per share climbed to $1.44 compared to $1.28 in the year prior. Wealth Management and Financial Markets segments saw profits increase 23% and 11%, respectively. U.S. Specialty Finance and International segment surged 58% from Q2 2017 to $63 million.
National Bank also raised its quarterly dividend to $0.62 per share, representing a 3.8% dividend yield.
BCE is the largest communications company in Canada. Shares were down over 10% year-over-year as of close on June 6. The rise of cord-cutting is a concern for telecom companies, but net additions in wireless and Internet have been a boon of late. BCE has been no different.
BCE reported 101,707 total broadband net customer additions in postpaid wireless, Internet, and IPTV in the second quarter, which was up 39% from a year ago. Wireless revenue was also up 3.6%, with strong Fibe customer growth. The board of directors declared a quarterly dividend of $0.755 per share, representing a 5.3% dividend yield.
Fortis owns and operates utility transmission and distribution assets in Canada and the United States. The stock is down 10% from the prior year. However, its wide moat and over 40 consecutive years of dividend growth is enticing for long-term investors.
In the first quarter, Fortis reported adjusted net earnings of $293 million compared to $287 million in the prior year. The stock offers a quarterly dividend of $0.425 per share, representing a 4.1% dividend yield.
Saputo Inc. (TSX:SAP)
Saputo is a Montreal-based dairy processor and cheese producer that sells its products in more than 40 countries. Its stock was up nearly 1% year-over-year as of close on June 6. A new NAFTA agreement could have significant ramifications for the Canadian dairy industry, but Saputo leadership has expressed confidence that more open markets would actually benefit the company.
Saputo boasts a dividend of $0.16 per share, representing a 1.4% dividend yield.