After all the hype Apple (AAPL) gets, it would be hard to imagine stocks out there that beat Apple's spectacular performance. But in the last year Apple was actually my number 3 stock, performance-wise.
Without further ado, here are the top two:
2. Intuitive Surgical's (ISRG) one year performance of 56% narrowly beat out Apple's 52%. Intuitive Surgical makes surgical robots and is fast growing. Its robots have no real competition and have constantly growing uses. The company now boasts a market cap of over $20 billion. It has a high P/E of 41, but the growth is expected to continue as more hospitals worldwide buy their robots and existing robots are used for more procedures. Intuitive was in the spotlight a lot recently as "the other" company whose share price crossed $500.
1. B&G Foods (BGS): I noticed this one a little over a year ago because it was paying out spectacular dividends, and even though it is a small company it is relatively stable and has been increasing dividends pretty fast. They currently stand at 4.7%, but when I acquired the stock they were at more than 8%. The stock has just increased in value pretty fast. B&G Foods manufactures and distributes several known smaller food brands. B&G's one year performance - 71%. The stock has more than doubled since I acquired it, and I expect the dividends and growth to continue.
For the next year, I expect Apple, TSLA and ISRG to be the top 3, all things going OK (iPad 3, iPhone 5, Model S, etc.). I also expect emerging markets to make a some kind of comeback. As an example, Tata Motors (TTM) has a one-year return of 15% but YTD is up 61%. Korea Fund's (EWY) one year return is 3.75; YTD is 13%, Vanguard Emerging Markets Index's (VWO) one year performance is 0.5, and YTD gain is 16.5%.