5 Industrial Stocks Set To Surge In 2020 After A Solid 2019

The industrial sector performed impressively in 2019 despite the fact that the U.S. economy is yet to recover from trade-related jitters. The economy has also lost its pace although it is growing for the 11th year on the trot. In spite of these negatives, several industrial stocks skyrocketed in 2019. Some of those stocks still carry strong growth potential for 2020.

Tarde War Hurts Business Spending

Lingering trade conflict with China has resulted in tariff war wherein duties have been levied on hundreds of billion dollars on each other’s goods. The U.S. government has already levied 25% tariff on more than $300 billion of Chinese goods mostly used as cheap inputs for the technology and industrial sectors. On the other hand, China imposed tariffs on more than $100 billion U.S. products mainly from the agricultural sector.

Imposition of tariff on China-made low-cost intermediary products raised the input cost of U.S. manufacturers. Consequently, U.S. business spending dropped significantly in 2019. The Institute of Supply Management reported that U.S. manufacturing activities contracted the most in December 2019 in more than a decade.

Industrial Sector Shines Despite Headwinds

Despite several headwinds, industrial stocks have performed quite strongly in 2019. The Industrial Select Sector SPDR (XLI), one of the 11 broad sectors of the S&P 500 Index, rallied nearly 29% in 2019, in line with the benchmark index’s gain. Notably, the XLI has started 2020 from where it ended in 2019 as it is already up 2.3% in the first six trading days.

Interim Trade Deal: A Major Driver

Chinese officials are set to arrive in Washington on Jan 13 in order to sign an interim trade pact known as the phase-one trade deal. Last week, Donald Trump said that he will sign the preliminary trade deal on Jan 15. The deal is expected to at least prevent further escalation of tariff war between the two largest trading countries of the world.

U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer said the deal will address intellectual-property disputes along with strong enforcement provisions and financial services and currency issues in addition to tariff rollback and higher agricultural purchase. Notably, China has reportedly agreed to substantially raise its agricultural imports from the United States to $40 billion.

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