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.
There is a lot of hype around the space industry right now. Billionaire Richard Branson took a recent trip to space in a supersonic plane built by his company, Virgin Galactic.
Another prominent billionaire, Jeff Bezos of Amazon, is looking to take a similar trip in the near future with his company, Blue Origin.
All of this exciting news has investors wondering if space tourism will be readily accessible in the next few years. There are so many exciting companies on the market right now that are pushing the limits of what we thought was possible with space travel.
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.
They have recently landed a contract to develop new missile systems, which has been financially lucrative.
Defense contracts like this give Northrop Grumman a financial buffer as they expand their space operations. The space sector is very competitive right now and can be a bit more volatile than the defense industry.
Northrop Grumman stock increased in price significantly from March through May of 2021, and has been relatively stable since then.
Despite this growth, some analysts think this defense giant is undervalued given its low price to earnings ratio.
The stock also has a solid dividend yield of 1.77 percent, making it even more exciting for long-term investors.
Astra Space (NASDAQ: ASTR)
Astra Space is one of the most exciting new companies in the space industry right now.
They recently went public via a SPAC in July. Right now, their focus is on low Earth orbit satellite launches.
These launches allow companies to send satellites to space without having to build their own launch system.
Astra is set to start their launches later this year. Dozens of clients have already contracted with them for their launches.
The company has also expressed interest in government contracts and could work with the US government in the future.
Although Astra is a relatively new player in this space, they could become a major competitor to Virgin Orbit, Momentus, and other big names as they grow.
Since Astra is so new to the market, this stock may be volatile in the short term. However, the market’s interest in their satellite launches bodes well for the future.
NextGen Acquisition II Corp. (NASDAQ: NGCA)
NextGen Acquisition II Corp. is a SPAC that is currently in talks to take Virgin Orbit public.
Virgin Orbit is part of Richard Branson’s Virgin empire and is a sister company to Virgin Galactic (more on them in a minute)
Virgin Orbit is a satellite launch service. They launch small satellites at relatively affordable prices for companies who don’t have the resources to do it themselves.
Their LauncherOne vehicle reached orbit in January 2021. They should start providing regular commercial space launches in the near future.
There are many different types of organizations that can benefit from Virgin Orbit’s services, from communications startups to research entities to government organizations.
Right now, NextGen Acquisition II Corp. stock is still very affordable, but if the deal is finalized, their stock price would likely increase dramatically.
Of course, there is some risk involved, as we aren’t sure exactly if or when this deal will go through, or what the deal will look like. This is a SPAC that’s best for investors with a good risk tolerance.
Best Space Travel Stocks
Virgin Galactic (NYSE: SPCE)
Virgin Galactic is an exciting company that is developing commercial space technology. They are part of Richard Branson’s 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.
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Virgin Galactic stock has been at the center of a lot of hype recently after Richard Branson’s flight to space. They were the first company to complete a mission of this kind.
Branson flew on the VSS Unity, a suborbital space plane that can travel at supersonic speeds.
This plane completed their first testing flights in 2018. After this successful mission with Branson, they are poised to start using this plane for paid passenger flights in 2022.
Virgin Galactic went public via a SPAC in 2019, which started a SPAC trend on the stock market.
Although their stock price has been volatile over the past few months, this company has plenty of room for long-term growth.
They are at the forefront of the space tourism industry – an industry that could double in value over the next decade.
Since there will be a limited number of space flights available, Virgin Galactic will be able to charge a significant amount for each ticket.
This could send their earnings skyrocketing in the future – pun intended.
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.
The company recently launched a test flight of their Starliner spacecraft, which could eventually ferry astronauts to and from the International Space Station.
Boeing stock struggled throughout 2020, although not because of their space projects. Boeing is one of the world’s largest manufacturers of airplanes, and they were heavily affected by COVID-19 related shutdowns.
There were also several high-profile crashes with the company’s 737 MAX aircraft, which led to its grounding by the FAA and other government agencies around the world.
The plane has since been updated to address these issues, and Boeing’s stock price has slowly started to recover.
Boeing stock recently dropped slightly as a result of an increase in COVID-19 cases in the United States. This could be a good time to buy the dip.
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 also 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 three missions in 2021. They are also working with NASA to send a CubeSat to the moon this year.
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. Their services are applicable to both public and private companies, and can be applied to exploration projects as well as defense and intelligence services.
Right now, Maxar has a very low price-to-earnings ratio, indicating that they could be undervalued. They also pay a small dividend.
Many Wall Street analysts are excited about this stock as well.
However, Maxar’s stock price has been very volatile over the past several months. This is likely because Maxar hasn’t launched their WorldView Legion satellites yet, and investors may be getting impatient.
Although this stock may be volatile in the short-term, this company appears to have a lot of long-term potential.
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 for the average consumer.
Cargo operations and deep space exploration can balance out space tourism. Satellite launch services are another potentially lucrative stream of revenue for space companies.
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. It’s always helpful to look at their revenue and profits relative to Wall Street’s 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. SpaceX currently has an estimated value of $52 billion.
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.
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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