Fake news and a general mistrust of the media has been a big issue ever since the 2016 U.S. federal election. And even though it’s on many people’s radars today, there are still concerns that these problems haven’t gone away, and that they could be big issues going forward. Deepfakes, in particular, undermine the trust that consumers have in what they see and hear in videos, adding a new problem that we’ve never had to worry about before.
Trust is more important than ever, which is why the companies that have it and are able to build off it are incredibly valuable today and for the foreseeable future. They might seem like boring buys today, but they can provide investors with a lot of stability and long-term growth, as demand could prove to be stronger than ever for their services.
Thomson Reuters Corp (TSX:TRI)(NYSE:TRI) is a great example of a company that has become a household name that’s associated with reliability and information. Amid an era in which users can obtain information from a number of sources, a name like Reuters stands out from the crowd for being a source of legitimacy. There’s a lot of misinformation spread through social media and that’s where being in the business of accurate information could be very valuable.
One of the knocks on the stock is that people are more self-sufficient in finding their own information today. However, sometimes finding accurate information is a challenge, and that’s where I still see a very big need for Reuters over the long term; over the past 12 months, it’s risen around 50%. It’s a trend that could continue, especially as there are more deepfake videos and scandals surrounding the accuracy of information.
A company like Reuters could prove to be a source of trust for those that may be skeptical of many of the things that they see and hear online, especially from media outlets that may appear biased.
BlackBerry Ltd (TSX:BB)(NYSE:BB) is another name that’s been associated with trust over the years. From the days when it was still making cellphones, the brand was known for security and private messaging. The company has built on that reputation as it’s worked to transform its business and focus more on cybersecurity and software. That trust has enabled BlackBerry to win contracts with governments and many large organizations.
It’s been a slow and steady process for the company to build up its business again. What’s important is that although its top line has been dropping, its bottom line has been improving. Over the past two years, BlackBerry has been able to record a strong net income, something that it struggled with for a number of years. The company is a much more legitimate investment today than it was years ago. It’s definitely a long-term play for investors, but the stock is still growing and has lots potential.
Year to date, BlackBerry’s share price has risen by close to 20% and at a price-to-book multiple of less than two, it’s still a great value buy today.
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Fool contributor David Jagielski has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool owns shares of BlackBerry. BlackBerry is a recommendation of Stock Advisor Canada.