Invest Like a Cicada: 5 Stocks to Buy and Hold Until 2030

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Cicadas
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The cicadas are coming. Later this month, Brood II -- periodical cicadas that emerge from the ground every 17 years -- will invade the Northeast and the mid-Atlantic. They're largely harmless insects, but their mating chirps and the carcasses they leave behind after reproducing generally make them a nuisance.

These cicadas will be in for a different world than the one that their parents experienced in 1996. "Seinfeld" is over. No one's dong the "Macarena." And things have also changed dramatically on Wall Street.

Flashback to 1996

Investors were starting to fret about the upcoming Y2K threat. The two hottest growth stocks that year -- Viasoft (acquired) and Zitel (imploded) -- were largely seen as beneficiaries of the oncoming calamity. The dot-com bubble was just starting to inflate, though many of the Internet companies that investors flock to these days didn't even exist.

Predicting which stocks would rule the market over the next 17 years at the time would've been a tall order in 1996, but let's give it a shot now.

Here are a few companies that investors shouldn't have a problem buying and keeping underground for the next 17 years until the next wave of Brood II periodical cicadas emerge.

Invest Like a Cicada: 5 Stocks to Buy and Hold Until 2030
(F)

Ford has been making cars through a fair number of cicada emergence cycles, and that's not going to change. Cars will naturally look materially different in 17 years; by then, it wouldn't be a shock to see self-driving cars in widespread use. Ford should continue to have a major role in the industry.
Naturally, there may be trends moving away from automobiles in general. The urbanization trend -- which features people flocking back to metropolitan areas where mass transit makes car ownership less important -- will likely continue. U.S. automakers may also continue to lose market share to overseas rivals.

However, it's hard to bet against Ford. Remember, Ford was the only major U.S. automaker to avoid the government's bailout in 2009, proving its mettle during tough times.
(AAPL)

This pick will be controversial given the way that Apple's stock has been beaten down since peaking late last year. But the consumer tech giant is a survivor.

Since the last Brood II invasion we saw the iPod in 2001, the iPhone in 2007, and the iPad in 2010. Yes, Steve Jobs is gone, but denying Apple its historical bent to raise the bar in consumer electronics would be a costly mistake. Apple will find a way to innovate its way to growth and margin expansion.
(WMT)

The world's largest retailer has plenty of detractors. Critics argue that Walmart destroys mom-and-pop businesses and treats its employees unfairly. However, 60 percent of the people in this country will visit a Walmart this month. Think about that. Walmart rang up more than $469 billion in sales last year. Think about that, too.

Walmart's size endows it with pricing advantages that it passes on to its customers, giving the discount department store chain and edge that can't be matched. The future may find online retail and digital delivery eating into its share of some product categories. But at the end of the day, you don't bet against Walmart's ability to provide goods at prices that free shoppers to spend more on other things.
(PG)

Despite remarkable changes in the world, some things have stayed constant from one cicada infestation to the next. Soap is still soap. Toilet paper is still toilet paper. Toothpaste is still toothpaste. And that probably won't change between now and 2030.

Procter & Gamble is home to large pantry of household brands that consumer know all too well. From Crest toothpaste to Bounty paper towels, it's hard to escape Procter & Gamble's reach. Some of its billion-dollar brands -- in other words, products that generate at least a billion dollars in annual sales -- include Pampers baby diapers, Duracell batteries, and Charmin toilet paper.

Its portfolio of products is so diversified that Procter & Gamble can weather the rare innovations that make a particular category obsolete. Along the way, patient investors get rewarded. Procter & Gamble has increased its dividend in each of the past 57 years.
(DIS)

The House of Mouse has been the undisputed champ of family entertainment for decades, but it's not something that Disney has taken for granted. Disney bought Capital Cities/ABC in 1995, a year before the last periodical cicada wave. It was a major purchase, and perhaps more for landing ESPN than ABC.

However, since the last Brood II emergence, the media giant has snapped up Pixar, Marvel, and most recently Lucasfilm to beef up its library of magnetic characters that it can build on through its cable properties, theme parks, and merchandising initiatives.

The way children consume media has evolved dramatically over the years, but digital media has presented new ways for Disney to cash in on the incessant appetite for family-friendly entertainment.

Besides, if there's a movie to be made that transforms cicadas into endearing insects in an animated theatrical release, it would be probably be Disney's handiwork.
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Motley Fool contributor Rick Munarriz owns shares of Walt Disney and Ford. The Motley Fool recommends Apple, Ford, Procter & Gamble, and Walt Disney. The Motley Fool owns shares of Apple, Ford, and Walt Disney.
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