The Luxury Stock PortfolioI know nothing about luxury. I pretty much pick my clothes out of a dumpster and the last time I bought jewelry was a little Tiffany (TIF) diamond stud for my two-year-old daughter when I insisted she get her nose pierced.
That aside, with the widening gap between rich and poor, plus the influx of euro-rich foreigners landing on American soil ready to spend their discounted dollars, it's time we look at a trend that's never going away: the demand for luxury stocks.When it comes to luxury stocks, I like to be as frugal as possible. There's no reason to pay top dollar when your goal is to make money, and the good thing right now is that many of these stocks are dirt cheap. And with what you make from investing in these companies' growth, you can treat yourself to some of their finest offerings.
At Stockpickr you can find a list of the top luxury stocks of companies that make products of high quality, outstanding design -- and correspondingly lofty price tags.
The Prime Picks
The luxury stock with the lowest price-to-earnings ratio is DaimlerChrysler AG (DAI) , soon to be named Daimler AG. This is the eighth largest auto manufacturer in the world, and it makes the classic Mercedes Benz automobiles -- the car that is preferred by Paris Hilton, Lindsay Lohan, Britney Spears and numerous of my other favorite celebrities.
In May, it announced that it would sell the Chrysler division to private equity firm Cerberus Capital Management. Daimler currently has a P/E ratio of 17.36 and a yield of 1.6%.
Daimler, which announced a $10.2 billion dollar buyback last quarter, also shows up in the Insider Purchases and Buybacks portfolio, which includes stocks with a significant insider purchase or stock buyback -- making it an even more appealing investment.
And, if you really like Daimler, pick up a Mercedes SLR McLaren supercar for $455,000 (that's just the base price). It's the fastest automatic transmission car in the world, clocking 0-60 mph in a mere 3.6 seconds, according to Car and Driver.
Another Good Life stock pick is Diageo (DEO) , manufacturer of luxe liquor brands Johnnie Walker scotch, Smirnoff vodka and Bailey's Irish Cream. Diageo just reported a 22% drop in earnings, primarily due to a huge increase in its tax rate, but the company did report a 2.2% increase in revenues. The stock has a P/E of 18.03, a PEG of 1.67 and a yield of 3.8%.
Personally, I can't stand the taste of scotch -- I much prefer a vanilla milkshake (made from Tahitian beans, naturally). But if you must indulge, then order a highball of Johnnie Walker 1805 Anniversary, a blend of extremely rare whiskies ranging from 45 to 70 years old. Only 200 bottles were produced, so expect to pay about $325 for an ounce and a half pour.
Diageo is owned by the Vice Fund, which invests in stocks of companies that are far from socially responsible. The vice fund also owns such hedonistic picks as MGM Mirage (MGM) and Las Vegas Sands Corp. (LVS) .
LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton (LVMUY) is the company that has the Moet & Chandon, Louis Vuitton, Parfums Christian Dior, TAGHeuer and Sephora luxury brands. 42.5% of the company is owned by Christian Dior. LVMH has a P/E of 24.05 and pays a yield of 2.54%. And if you do well on the stock, treat yourself to one of their rarest, most expensive bottles -- the crisp, honey taste of a Krug Clos du Mesnil 1995, for about $750 a bottle.
Other decadent picks in the Stockpickr luxury portfolio include Bulgari (BULIF) and Hermes International (HESAF) . Once you start reaping your profits, kick back and light your celebratory cigar -- and ash into this Hermes ashtray ($465), which just squeals success. I even keep one in my cubicle here at TheStreet.com.