One of the craziest years on Wall Street will be over in just 10 days. This year, investors have navigated their way through a 34% loss in the broad field S&P 500 in less than five weeks, as well as more than 80% technology-dependent bounce Nasdaq Composite since the bottom of the March 23 bear market.
In spite of these wild swings, one asset class that proved almost unrestricted in 2020 is cryptocurrency. While this may not be the best performing digital currency by percentage terms this year, all eyes are on bitcoin.
The world’s largest cryptocurrency has almost tripled since the start of the year, an improved performance of 185 percentage points from the benchmark S&P 500. Bitcoin also accounts for nearly two-thirds of the more than $ 600 billion in the aggregate market value of every cryptocurrency in existence.
But if you think bitcoin’s gains in 2020 are impressive, you haven’t seen anything yet. The following five high-growth stocks completely defeated bitcoin in returns so far.
Novavax: + 3,210%
No company outperformed bitcoin more decisively than a clinical stage drug developer Novavax (NASDAQ: NVAX). Shares of the company are up over 3,200% so far, and were, at one point, higher by the north by 4,000%.
Like most high-end healthcare stocks, the buzz with Novavax has to do with its development of the 2019 coronary disease disease vaccine (COVID-19). In a phase 1 trial, he noted that all participants who took NVX-CoV2373 developed neutralizing antibodies after a second dose. Although late-stage trials in the US have been postponed, Novavax expects to report much-awaited late-stage data from a UK phase 3 trial early in the first quarter of 2021.
Interestingly, Novavax’s $ 8.4 billion market cap is not so crazy given the tens of billions in sales that could result from a successful COVID-19 vaccine. No assumptions about clinical effectiveness should be taken in late-stage studies. However, if NVX-CoV2373 provides vaccine efficacy of 90% or higher, multimillion-dollar orders are a real possibility.
NIO: + 1,044%
There were two major themes that led to skyrocketing stock prices in 2020: COVID-19 vaccines and anything to do with renewable energy. Electric vehicle manufacturer (EV) NIO (NYSE: NIO) and is a 1,044% gain so far under the second category.
It is clear that investors are enthusiastic about the prospect of EVs coming to dominate the auto landscape. According to the Society of Automotive Engineers of China, sales of new energy vehicles should catapult from 5% in 2020 to about half of all vehicles sold in China by 2035. With China expected to be the largest consumer of EVs worldwide, NIO is sitting at the very high growth industry driver seat.
This year also the production, income statement and NIO balance sheet have made significant strides forward. Over the past two quarters, deliveries of NIO aggregates have surpassed all of 2019’s. And with its share price soaring, NIO has seized the opportunity to raise additional capital and secure funding for innovation and capacity expansion.
Power Plug: + 954%
Keeping with the renewable energy theme, hydrogen fuel cell solutions company Power Plug (NASDAQ: PLUG) knocking on a four-digit earnings door so far in 2020. That’s better than bitcoin performance by over 700 percentage points.
The 2020 Plug Power stereo can be traced to two catalysts. First, the COVID-19 pandemic has kept people in their homes and encouraged them to shop online. As a result, there have been large retailers who deal with online orders ok busy. Plug Power’s hydrogen fuel cell solutions are mainly used in forklifts used by large retailers and food chains. That is, demand for its GenDrive forklift should remain firm.
Secondly, there is the continued drive towards mobile and stationary clean energy solutions. Plug Power’s third quarter operating results indicate that the nearly 600 million hours of running time from its GenDrive systems eliminated 6.7 million pounds of carbon dioxide emissions in 2020.
Plug is at the forefront of eco-friendly innovation, with the company forecasting $ 1.2 billion in annual sales by 2024. For context, full-year sales in 2020 are likely to come in at around $ 324 million, per Wall Street.
Tesla: + 684%
Investors are also putting the pedal to the metal on a giant EV Tesla (NASDAQ: TSLA) in a big way. Putting its 684% earnings aside in 2020, Tesla’s shares are up more than 10,000% in just over 10 years.
Tesla’s buzz can be traced to its first mover advantage in the US market, and its potential to capture EV’s overseas market share. In total, Tesla could deliver north of 500,000 vehicles this year. The company also has two other gigafactories in the works that will complement existing production facilities in Fremont, Calif., And Shanghai, China.
Other factors influencing Tesla’s big earnings in 2020 include its addition to the S&P 500, which will become official today, Dec. 21, as well as its Battery Day presentation. Although its share price had rebounded following the event, Tesla’s presentation made clear that the company’s EV battery innovation will provide for a higher range and better power, all with steadily lower production costs.
Tesla seems to be on its way to developing a sub- $ 30,000 EV, and traditional car companies should rightly worry.
Moderna: + 636%
Finally, a clinical stage drug developer Moderna (NASDAQ: MRNA) bitcoin crushed in the return section in 2020. The developer of the COVID-19 vaccine has more than tripled bitcoin’s return to date.
Moderna made waves by becoming the first drug developer to go to human clinical trials for its COVID-19 vaccine in the spring. He confirmed people’s hopes in November, when he identified a primary efficacy for mRNA-1273 of 94.1% in a late-stage trial. Although we do not know how long coronavirus vaccines will protect humans, the effectiveness of 94.1% is significantly higher than researchers expected. If enough people choose to have the vaccine, Moderna could play a pivotal role in ending the pandemic.
This past Thursday, December 17, Moderna also received positive news when the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) advisory panel voted 20-0 (with one abstention) to recommend mRNA-1273 for emergency use authorization (EUA). At the time of writing, it is expected that the FDA will approve the Moderna EUA COAID-19 vaccine and open the door for potentially tens of millions of doses to make their way to the public.