The space exploration industry is changing quickly, which makes now an exciting time to invest in the industry. Space tourism has long been considered a thing of the future, but with technology changing quickly, it might be coming sooner than you think. We’ve rounded up the best space stocks for investors to check out right now.
Best Space Stocks To Buy
Aerojet Rocketdyne Holdings (NYSE: AJRD)
This California-based space company has a long and interesting history. While they began as a rubber manufacturing company, they transitioned into the space industry in the 1940s.
Today, the company has aerospace and defense contracts, and they’re also involved in real estate. Their diverse operations make them stand out from many other space companies on the market. Business diversity can also help keep a stock price stable during a difficult market.
Aerojet Rockedyne makes missile defense systems, which means that they have plenty of solid government contracts. They also develop and produce technology for human space exploration missions. They have a long history with NASA and have been involved in many of the US’s most exciting space missions over the years.
Aerojet Rocketdyne has a long history as a government contractor. This trusted relationship sets them up for future success if the US government decides to continue or expand their aerospace projects.
In December 2020, defense giant Lockheed Martin announced that they were acquiring Aerojet Rocketdyne. AJRD shares immediately shot up after this announcement. Since then, the stock has been trading sideways.
Lockheed Martin will pay out $56 per share for the acquisition. Since the stock currently trades for less than that, shareholders could enjoy significant returns as long as the share price remains low enough before the acquisition.
Northrop Grumman Corporation (NYSE: NOC)
Northrop Grumman is one of the top space companies in the world. They have contracts with governments around the world to develop space and defense technology.
Northrop Grumman has increased their involvement in the space industry over the last few years. From 2018 to 2020, they developed the OmegA space launch, although this ultimately wasn’t selected for a government contract.
Up next, they’re part of the US’s National Team to develop a lunar lander. They have a contract to develop the Transfer Element, which essentially allows the spacecraft to dock once it reaches the moon. Northrop will also develop HALO, a module built to orbit the moon that will serve as a stop for astronauts before they land.
Additionally, they provide support to NASA for several key telescopes. They’ve also developed the Cygnus, a spacecraft that carries cargo to the International Space Station.
In addition to their involvement in the space industry, Northrop is involved in some of the US government’s largest defense contracts. In the third quarter of 2020, they beat investor estimates for both earnings and revenue. Most recently, they landed a government contract to develop new missile systems, which should give them a good influx of cash.
This space stock has fluctuated in price over the past several years, so investors should approach it with caution. Right now, their share price is up from the beginning of 2021. However, their defense contracts are likely to give them a financial buffer. Expanding their involvement in space-related projects will only help them grow their market share.
Holicity (NASDAQ: HOL)
Like some of our other picks on this list, Holicity is a SPAC that is planning to take a prominent space company public in the near future. In this case, Holicity is set to merge with Astra, which is a direct competitor to SpaceX that has received plenty of buzz over the last several years.
Astra is based in California and specializes in making small payload deliveries to space. They pride themselves on offering affordable deliveries, and clients can reserve their delivery space online.
The SPAC market as a whole has been down recently, which means that many stocks are trading at very affordable prices. Astra is an exciting company with plenty of potential, and buying Holicity stock ahead of the merger is an opportunity for investors to get in on the ground floor.
Best Space Travel Stocks
Virgin Galactic (NYSE: SPCE)
Virgin Galactic is an exciting company that is developing commercial space technology. They are part of the broader Virgin Group and are based in New Mexico.
As part of the commercial space race, Virgin Galactic is developing spacecraft for space tourists. They also develop spacecraft for scientific purposes.
Virgin Galactic is working on a spaceplane, the VSS Unity, which completed testing flights in 2018. This plane uses a rocket to reach suborbital heights, and may run commercial flights sometime in the next few years. It will launch from the Virgin Galactic spaceport in New Mexico.
Progress on this project stopped in 2020 as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, although it was eventually able to resume after a months-long hiatus. Their stock price has been up and down since then. Investors are hopeful that Virgin Galactic will be able to take tourists to space soon, but also seem skeptical that the company will be able to fully deliver on their promises.
It’s important to note that many major hedge funds and expert investors sold their Virgin Galactic stock in early 2021. However, the company is set to launch their next test flight in May. If this test flight is successful, it could have a positive effect on their stock price. Since Virgin Galactic is trading at a low point, now could be a good time to add it to your portfolio.
Stable Road Acquisition Corp. (NASDAQ: SRAC)
Stable Road Acquisition Corp. runs Stable Road Capital, an investment firm based in California. They caught the attention of Wall Street investors earlier this year, when they announced an upcoming merger with Momentus. Their stock ticker will change to MNTS when this merger happens.
Momentus partners with some of the world’s leading space companies, such as Lockheed Martin and SpaceX. They also work with NASA and other government agencies.
One of Momentus’s most exciting operations is their space delivery service. They work with public and private sector companies to deliver satellites and important cargo into orbit. Unlike many other space services, their spacecraft are reusable.
When this new merger becomes public, the company will have a value of over $1.2 billion. Stable Road stock jumped up after they announced the merger, but it’s still very affordable, making right now a great time to buy.
Boeing (NYSE: BA)
You may know Boeing as an aircraft manufacturer, but their space-related projects are also noteworthy. They are one half of the United Launch Alliance, which is working on exciting projects like the Vulcan Rocket.
Boeing is a very established company. They were founded in 1916 and have had a consistent presence in the air and space sector since then. Their aerospace operations are run out of their defense, space, and security division.
Boeing provides a number of different spacecraft, including launch systems, space planes, satellites, probes, and more. They work with NASA and other agencies on their space projects.
Because Boeing is heavily involved in the air travel industry, they have struggled this year. Air travel has been limited, and their stock price has gone down as a result.
However, this market could be the right time to buy Boeing stock. As an established company, it’s unlikely that their stock will ever completely crash. In fact, it’s likely to go up in value as air travel returns to normal.
Investors should be cautious when investing in Boeing right now. Their earnings plummeted in 2020, and they’ve also had to lay off thousands of workers.
However, it’s likely that this stock will eventually return to normal in the long run. Travel is already starting to resume in many parts of the world as a result of the COVID-19 vaccine, which bodes well for Boeing stock.
Vector Acquisition (NASDAQ: VACQ)
Vector Acquisition is a SPAC that is planning to acquire Rocket Lab in the near future. SPACs are a great way to invest in exciting new companies that are about to go public, and typically serve as an alternative to an IPO.
Rocket Lab is a company that is attempting to redefine the way we interact with space. They focus on developing low-cost rockets that can launch frequently. Their Electron rocket has already launched 19 times and is designed to minimize space debris.
This company specializes in launching small satellites to low earth orbit. They’re able to send up multiple satellites at a time, so it is very efficient. They’ve launched satellites for government agencies in the U.S., Australia, and New Zealand, as well as commercial clients.
This company has already completed two missions in 2021. They’re planning a third in May, which would launch two global monitoring satellites into orbit.
Rocket Lab has a very unique business model that stands out, even among other space exploration companies. Their impending merger with Vector Acquisition is full of potential, and investing in them now could be lucrative later on.
Maxar (NYSE: Maxar)
Maxar is a growing space company based in Colorado. They are involved in satellite communications, radar technology, and more.
This company was created as a merger of four different companies just a few years ago. Although they’re relatively new in the industry, they’ve already been quite successful. Earlier this year, they acquired Vricon, a company involved in 3D satellite data.
This company currently manufactures satellites, and provides access to satellite imagery and data for their clients. They also provide analytics services that can help clients in a wide range of industries.
Maxar performed well in the third and fourth quarters of 2020, reporting strong earnings. However, they are still carrying debt for the year, so investors may want to keep an eye on their finances moving forward.
Maxar stock is very affordable at the moment, so now might be the right time to buy. Their services are applicable to both public and private companies, and can be applied to exploration projects as well as defense and intelligence services.
Investing In Space Stocks
The space business has really piqued investor interest in recent years. As we struggle with climate change here on Earth, many tech companies are looking to space for new solutions.
One key thing to look for when shopping for space stocks is diversity in their operations. While space tourism is a buzzy topic right now, it could be many years before it becomes a reality. Cargo operations and deep space exploration can balance out space tourism.
Successful government contracts may be a good indication of success for a space company. When looking at a space stock, consider their financial data from the last year or so. Consider their revenue and profits relative to expectations.
You should also look at their upcoming projects to see what their future prospects are. Finally, you might look at relevant stock data like their price to earnings ratio. This can tell you if their stock is under or overvalued.
Is Space X A Public Company?
SpaceX is one of the most exciting companies in the space business, and are leading the ‘new space’ industry. Celebrity entrepreneur Elon Musk founded SpaceX in 2002 in southern California. They focus on making space travel more efficient and accessible.
While investor interest in SpaceX is high, they are currently a private company and are not traded on the stock market. Musk has opted to keep SpaceX private because it allows them to focus on innovation without as many restrictions as public companies.
SpaceX has an estimated value of $52 billion. They are known for the Falcon rocket, which is the first reusable rocket to reach orbit.
They are also developing the Dragon rocket, which will be able to take passengers and cargo to and from space. The Dragon is the first private rocket to take passengers to the International Space Station. It could be used for space tourism in the future as well.
Although you can’t invest in SpaceX yet, you can benefit financially from their success by investing in companies that partner with SpaceX. They are proving that commercial companies can be just as successful in the space market as public contractors.
Does NASA Have Stock?
When you think of space, you probably think of NASA. This US agency runs high profile rocket launches, operates space telescopes, and is currently working to send humans to Mars and beyond.
Because NASA is a government agency, they are not listed on the stock market. However, there are still ways to invest in NASA projects. Investors can look for companies that contract with NASA, such as Boeing, Aerojet Rocketdyne, and more.
Landing a NASA contract can be very lucrative for these companies. Space stocks that have contracted with NASA often seen a bump in their stock price as a result.
Best Space Stocks: Final Thoughts
The aerospace industry is very exciting right now. New innovations are making it easier for companies to send cargo and even humans to space. Commercial space tourism, once considered a thing of the future, is now becoming more realistic.
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Investing in space stocks is the easiest way for investors to capitalize on this innovation. These companies are likely to continue their growth in the future and present an exciting financial opportunity.
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