Hot summer weather got us thinking about short summer haircuts, which is as good a way as any to take a closer look at some consumer staples stocks. The seasons change, but demand for razors and batteries, diapers and toilet paper, fish food and weed killer, is much less susceptible to the economic cycle than, say, semiconductors or copper wire.
The defensive aspects of consumer goods as a group are readily apparent in the sector's relative performance so far this year. Save for utilities, no other sector has held up as well in a down market. For the bull and bear cases on Energizer Holdings (ENR), Spectrum Brands (SPB) and Dow component Procter & Gamble (PG), see the video below:
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