Don’t look now, but the Canadian stock market may be on the cusp of a bull run. The S&P/TSX Composite Index has shot up more than 5% over the past month, putting the index close to even over the past year.
While the stock market may be nearing positive territory over the past 12 months, it certainly hasn’t been without volatility. In the past year alone, there have been two 5% drops and two additional downturns reaching losses of close to 10%.
Despite the Canadian stock market’s recent volatility though, there is reason to be optimistic today. Interest rate hikes have been put on hold, at least temporarily, as inflation continues to cool, suggesting to investors that the worst may be behind us.
Now is the time for long-term investors to put cash to work
I’m as bullish as the next investor, but I’m also not expecting volatility to slow down just yet. Increased interest rates seem to be cooling inflation, but there’s still no shortage of uncertainty in the short term. Because of that, I’m making sure that my portfolio isn’t over-indexed towards highly volatile growth stocks.
I’ve reviewed two TSX stocks that I’ve got at the top of my watch list right now. Together, the two companies can provide an investment portfolio with passive income, international exposure, and even market-beating growth potential.
TSX stock #1: Bank of Nova Scotia
If passive income is what you’re after, you can’t go wrong with investing in any of the major Canadian banks. The Big Five own not only some of the longest payout streaks on the TSX but the highest yields, too.
At today’s stock price, Bank of Nova Scotia (TSX:BNS) is the only Canadian bank yielding above 6%. In addition to that, the $80 billion bank has been paying a dividend to its shareholders for close to 200 consecutive years.
You’d be hard-pressed to find another 6% dividend yield as dependable as Bank of Nova Scotia on the TSX today.
Another reason why I’ve got Bank of Nova Scotia on my watch list is its growing presence in Latin America. Political uncertainty has hurt the bank in the short term, but the long-term growth potential remains largely intact.
The dividend alone is enough for Bank of Nova Scotia to be a strong buy ahead of potential market volatility. But once you add in the international exposure, it puts the bank near the top of the list among the Canadian banks for me.
TSX stock #2: Brookfield Renewable Partners
You may not get a 6% dividend yield with this energy stock, but you will have the opportunity to earn market-beating returns.
At today’s stock price, Brookfield Renewable Partners (TSX:BEP.UN) is yielding just over 4%.
Excluding dividends, shares are up a market-crushing 100% over the past five years. And that’s even with the renewable energy stock down more than 30% below all-time highs.
Brookfield Renewable Partners isn’t the only renewable energy on the TSX trading at a discount. The sector as a whole has taken a beating over the past two years.
If you’re a long-term investor that’s bullish on the rise of green energy, now is the time to load up on companies like Brookfield Renewable Partners.