Celebrate America With These Four Stocks

Ryan is a member of The Motley Fool Blog Network -- entries represent the personal opinion of the blogger and are not formally edited.

It has been over 237 years since our country declared independence, although the day we celebrate was not actually the day America decided it would be independent.

On July 2, 1776, the Second Continental Congress voted to officially accept American hero Richard Henry Lee's resolution to establish independence from Great Britain. Two days later, on July 4, congress officially approved a statement outlining the reasons behind the decision. Primarily authored by Thomas Jefferson, Americans everywhere know it as the Declaration of Independence.

If the Founding Fathers did not have the courage to go through with that momentous decision, it is likely none of us would exist. Without them, this wonderful capitalist system, which allows us the opportunity buy and trade pieces of ownership in a business through that glorious mechanism known as the stock market, would never have become a reality.

Blessed are we who have the chance to build great wealth through wonderful world of equities. Here are four items that play a big part in festivities all over the country, as well as a stock to go along with each.

Condiments

The top selling condiment in America is mayonnaise, Hellmann's brand mayonnaise to be specific. But that brand is owned by Unilever and for Independence Day, only American companies will do.

When it comes to American condiments, Heinz is obviously the king. But thanks to a buyout from Berkshire Hathaway, there aren't really any profits to be made by individuals in that stock anymore. 

The best selling brand of mustard in the country is French's. Sadly, that brand is controlled by the British conglomerate Reckitt-Benckiser. But, an American company is behind our nation's second-best selling mustard brand: Grey Poupon.

Kraft Foods (NASDAQ: KRFT) actually makes a lot of products that contribute towards great barbecues, namely cheese and condiments. In addition to Grey Poupon and various Kraft brand condiments, the company is also the maker of A-1 steak sauce, Bull's Eye brand barbecue sauce, and Miracle Whip. 

Kraft has two brands that annually gross over $1 billion in sales. There is the company's eponymous Kraft brand whose products include cheese, dinners, and dressings. Its second brand generating over $1 billion in sales is Oscar Meyer. While millions of Americans may have had Oscar Mayer brand wieners this Fourth of July, they actually come in second place in terms of market share by the slimmest of margins. Speaking of those...

Hot dogs

While some see them as a grotesque display of gluttony, others somehow think is a sporting event. Hot dog eating contests have become a popular Fourth of July tradition. And even if they aren't your thing, just having one or two tasty dogs can be a delicious way celebrate.

In the 52-weeks ended April 21, 2013, sales of Oscar Meyer brand dogs dropped 7.9%. That allowed Hillshire Brands to claim the honor of selling America's most popular dog, its Ballpark brand franks. Hillshire may have the top dog for now, but anyone who tells you that Kraft isn't a higher quality company is probably wrong.

Grills

Hot dogs are awesome, but without a grill, only a wild animal would want to eat them. Jarden (NYSE: JAH) is the producer of the popular Coleman brand of grills.

Coleman brand grills, and perhaps to a greater extent camping equipment are immensely popular. From tents to flashlights to water heaters, Coleman makes practically everything you'd if you want to rough it in the wilderness.

Baseball is, and will always be, America's pastime. Rawlings is another brand in Jarden's portfolio. Rawlings has been the official supplier of baseballs to the major leagues for over 35 years. It doesn't get much more American than that.

Finally, beer

What Fourth of July would have been complete without beer? It was a bit trickier to find an American company here, and I may be exploiting a loophole here, but I managed to do it. When I think of American beer brands, two names come to mind: Budweiser and Coors.

Budweiser is owned by Anheuser-Busch InBev, a company that is a result of a merger between Anheuser-Busch, a company that is as American as they come, and InBev a Belgian-Brazilian brewer.

Coors is owned by the Molson Coors Brewing Company (NYSE: TAP). That company is a result of a merger between Coors and Molson, a Canadian company. What made me decide that Molson Coors was more American than Anheuser-Busch InBev might seem trivial to some.

While Anheuser-Busch InBev controls the top two beer brands in America, Bud Light and Budweiser, the parent company has its headquarters in Belgium.

Molson Coors, on the other hand, is headquartered in two cities, with one of them being Denver. Having its headquarters in an American city made me want to mention the stock more. Trivial as it may be that was my decision.

Foolish final thoughts

I haven't said a word about P/E ratios or balance sheets or income statements, things that certainly demand close examination before any stock is purchased. But, in this article, I just wanted to shed some light on four companies who own brands that are distinctly American.

These are some of the biggest and most popular brands in our country today. And to a certain extent, they will succeed as we, the American people, do. If our country excels in the future as it has in the past, then it is very likely that these companies will be major beneficiaries of that prosperity. Betting on any one of these companies is, in a sense, betting on the future of America, and anyone who has made that bet so far has been a big winner. 

 

The best investing approach is to choose great companies and stick with them for the long term. The Motley Fool's free report "3 Stocks That Will Help You Retire Rich" names stocks that could help you build long-term wealth and retire well, along with some winning wealth-building strategies that every investor should be aware of. Click here now to keep reading.


Ryan Palmer has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends Molson Coors Brewing Company. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. Is this post wrong? Click here. Think you can do better? Join us and write your own!

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