3 Waste Management Stocks That Will Help Investors Clean Up

Stocks to buy

Ahead of market and economic vagaries, investors may want to set their sights on the top waste management stocks. Fundamentally, you really can’t get that much more relevant this “dirty” but extraordinarily compelling sector.

First, let’s talk numbers. According to Grand View Research, the global waste management industry reached a valuation of $1.29 billion last year. Further, experts project that by 2030, the sector will hit revenue of nearly $1.97 billion. That comes out to a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 5.4%, not bad for an unsexy ecosystem.

Second and more importantly, the best argument for waste stocks may stem from the Law of Conservation of Mass. Put simply, in a closed system, mass is neither created nor destroyed. Rather, it transfers from one form to another. Obviously, this means someone has to deal with the mess. On that note, below are the top waste management stocks to buy.

Waste Management (WM)

Image of green Waste Management (WM) branded truck in the foreground and building with Waste Management flag in the background.

Source: rblfmr / Shutterstock.com

When it comes to top waste management stocks, I’d be remiss not to mention, well, Waste Management (NYSE:WM). A self-explanatory enterprise, the company commands a massive footprint in the underlying industry. Per its public profile, its network includes 346 transfer stations, 293 active landfill disposal sites and 146 recycling plants, among other impressive statistics.

Now, WM offers an avenue for steady growth and modest passive income for investors concerned about market ambiguities. Looking at its financials, I must say that nothing truly remarkable pops up. Rather, the business banks on a predictable revenue stream and therefore, consistent profitability. For instance, since 2020, Waste Management has posted consecutive increases in revenue. It’s also never failed to print net income since at least 2009.

In turn, the enterprise offers a forward yield of 1.63%. That’s not much. However, investors have the confidence of 210 years of consecutive dividend increases. On a parting note, analysts rate WM a moderate buy with a $183.50 average price target.

Waste Connections (WCN)

WCN stock: a garbage truck parked at a curb

Source: Jordi_Cor / Shutterstock.com

Another idea for waste stocks that deserves to be on your radar, Waste Connections (NYSE:WCN) is a North American integrated waste services firm. Per its public profile, the company provides waste collection, transfer, disposal and recycling services, mainly of solid waste. Headquartered in The Woodlands, Texas, Waste Connections across its subsidiaries features operations in the U.S. and Canada.

On the charts, WCN is a bit of a laggard. Since the January opener, it moved up only a bit over 1%. In contrast, WM gained over 9% during the same period. Over the trailing 52 weeks, WCN slipped more than 6%. However, that might also make it relatively a discount. While waste management stocks don’t generally feature sterling financials, WCN is above average.

For example, its three-year revenue growth rate clocks in at 11.1%. This stat beats out 61.58% of the competition. And aside from a blip in 2015, the company consistently prints net income. Also, analysts peg shares a moderate buy with a $156 price target, projecting 17% growth.

Quest Resource (QRHC)

A hand with a yellow rubber glove holding up a big black trash bag in front of a teal background.

Source: Shutterstock

Arguably the riskiest idea among waste stocks on this list, Quest Resource (NASDAQ:QRHC) doesn’t initially seem so bad. In fact, it appears a stunner, at least relative to its peers. Since the beginning of the year, QRHC gained over 23% of equity value. So, why would that be risky? Well, for some folks, fears may exist about holding the bag.

It’s not as if meme traders are loading up the boat with top waste management stocks. Still, if things were to get spicy in this arena, QRHC would likely be the biggest beneficiary due to its small footprint. With only a market capitalization of around $145 million, its tiny compared to the multi-billion-dollar enterprises mentioned above.

Still, Quest – which specializes in a word-salad buffet of efficiencies and flexibilities – offers some intriguing financial stats. While the print has faded a bit recently, in the past three years, its growth rate clocked in at an impressive 31.3%. Also, analysts rate shares a moderate buy with a $12 price target, implying almost 66% upside.

On the date of publication, Josh Enomoto did not have (either directly or indirectly) any positions in the securities mentioned in this article. The opinions expressed in this article are those of the writer, subject to the InvestorPlace.com Publishing Guidelines.

A former senior business analyst for Sony Electronics, Josh Enomoto has helped broker major contracts with Fortune Global 500 companies. Over the past several years, he has delivered unique, critical insights for the investment markets, as well as various other industries including legal, construction management, and healthcare. Tweet him at @EnomotoMedia.

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