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3D Printing Is Finally Having Its Moment – These Are The 2 Stocks In The Space To Keep An Eye On

3D Printing Is Finally Having Its Moment – These Are The 2 Stocks In The Space To Keep An Eye On

The technology behind a fizzled craze has pushed into a new frontier, and these stocks are at the forefront of the 3D printing revolution.

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The story with 3D printing is a classic case of market exuberance getting ahead of itself.

Not long ago, 3D printing stocks reached incredible highs as the hype around the new technology became overly optimistic.

Consumers imagined 3D printers in their homes that they could use to print products, or replacement parts for home repairs. The possibilities seemed promising and endless, and the market ran with it pushing 3D printing stocks to unsustainable levels.

When the technology couldn’t meet the overly lofty benchmarks set for it, everything came crashing down as investors and consumers alike soured on the industry.

Since then, 3D printing stocks have been all but ignored. But the industry has been growing like crazy, though not quite in the way once expected.

3D printers aren’t in every home as once imagined and won’t be in the foreseeable future, but the innovations the 3D printing industry has been churning out are nothing short of astonishing and have turned the technology from a novelty to a practical tool for commercial manufacturing and then some.

Currently, 3D printing is used in the manufacturing processes of everything from smartphones to hearing aides to cars.

In the medical field, 3D printing is being used to print flat organs like skin and blood vessels, as well as hollow ones like bladders. All of which are being successfully used in clinical settings.

Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT) is 3D printing giant titanium fuel tanks for rocket launches to space.

Adidas (OTC: ADDDF) is even 3D printing its newest sneakers. The company sees its future in using capture tech, data analysis software, and 3D printing to create the ideal shoe for the wearer’s exact needs in almost no time at all.

With such impressive advances, its not hard to imagine why its projected that the 3D printing market will jump to $26.5 billion by 2021, up from $8.8 billion last year.

But the market doesn’t seem to have caught on yet, making this industry an attractive one for investors looking at the long term.

These two stocks are the ones to watch in the 3D printing sector.

3D Systems (NYSE: DDD)

3D Systems (NYSE: DDD) manufactures and sells 3D printers, print materials, on-demand parts services, and digital design tools.

Shares of this pioneer of the 3D printing industry are up a whopping 82% this year as its financial performance has finally started to improve.

For the past 3 years while the entire 3D printing industry has been down and out, 3D Systems has seen revenue stagnate and financial losses pile up. But so far in 2018, there have been signs that brighter days are ahead for the company.

Revenue in the first quarter was up 6.1% to $165.9 million, and the non-GAAP loss was cut in half to $0.03 per share, news that sent the stock on a tear.

Last month, the company announced a new On Demand Anatomical Modeling Service designed to assist medical professionals in educating patients or planning surgeries with anatomically correct 3D printed models from digital imaging data.

3D Systems has been successful in the healthcare market, and its first quarter Healthcare revenues were up 21% year-over-year to $52.4 million on strong demand and growth across its healthcare categories.

The company had a busy June. It also launched its new DMP Flex 100 and DMP Dental 100 3D printers. The new printers will provide twice the output with the DMP Flex 100 achieving significantly finer finishes than previous models.

Stratasys (NASDAQ: SSYS)

Stratasys (NASDAQ: SSYS) provides 3D printing and additive manufacturing solutions for the production of parts used in the processes of designing and manufacturing products and for the direct manufacturing of end parts.

Much like DDD, Stratasys’ stock price exploded, and the company saw its all-time high revenues of $750 million in 2014. Since then, the company has struggled to grow beyond 2014 levels. However, it has managed to reduce corporate overhead and shrink its operating losses.

Despite relatively stagnant earnings and guidance for 2018, the company is making a smart move into a new area. Stratasys has developed a new metal 3D printing technology that it will soon commercialize.

In March, CEO Ilan Levin said about the technology:

“Earlier today, we revealed the development of a new additive manufacturing process designed to… displace conventional methods for short-run metal manufacturing. Traditional short-run metal manufacturing applications that utilize techniques such as investment casting, sand casting, and powder injection molding are limited by high costs for tooling and labor… We’re starting with aluminum and that was certainly a market-focused choice, not a technology limitation… I think some of the things that we would be looking at in terms of applications would be short-run production in automotive, highly customized parts for high-end automotive and aerospace industries.”

This is a big development for Stratasys as this would be its first foray into 3D printers with metal capabilities.

Metal 3D printing is currently the fastest-growing segment of the 3D printing industry. Assuming Stratasys’ new system functions well and the company’s strategy with it is on target, this could be a big potential winner for the company.

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