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3 Best Textile and Apparel Stocks Right Now Of all the clothing and textile brands, which ones are dead ringers for your next stock pick? Let's find out.

By Melissa Brock

entrepreneur daily

This story originally appeared on MarketBeat contributor/ - MarketBeat

Each year, Americans chuck millions of tons of textiles into landfills. As these discarded remnants decompose, they release methane, dyes and chemicals, which pollute the air and contaminate groundwater and soil. Who knew that throwing out a ratty T-shirt could have major effects on the planet?

Recyclable fabric and other "planet-friendly" options have started popping up all over. Let's dig into your options for this basic consumer staple.

Why Buy Textile and Apparel Stocks?

Certain textile manufacturing falls into the consumer staples segment, which is important for portfolio diversification. Consumer staples also consist of goods and services that people use on a daily basis, like food, clothing, and other daily-use personal products.

Stocks in this sector offer steady growth, solid dividends, and low volatility, particularly in the face of high inflation. Below, we'll identify three solid options that might make sense for your portfolio.

3 Textile and Apparel Stocks for Your Portfolio

Let's take a look at a few textile stocks you can add into your mix, with a focus on those that try to do their part for the environment.

Hanesbrands Inc. (NYSE: HBI)

Hanesbrands Inc., headquartered in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, is a consumer goods company that designs, manufactures, sources, and sells everyday basic innerwear and activewear apparel in the Americas, Europe, Australia, and the Asia Pacific. It operates through three main segments: innerwear, activewear, and international segments.

The innerwear segment includes core apparel products like men's and women's underwear, children's underwear, socks and intimate apparel sold in the U.S. Activewear includes activewear products such as T-shirts, fleece, performance apparel, sport shirts, and thermals sold in the U.S.

The company's international segment includes innerwear, activewear, hosiery, and home goods products sold outside of the U.S. and includes the following brands: Hanes, Champion, Bonds, Maidenform, DIM, Bali, Playtex, Bras N Things, Nur Die/Nur Der, Alternative, L'eggs, JMS/Just My Size, Lovable, Wonderbra, Berlei and Gear for Sports.

The company left 2021 with a stronger business and financial foundation and a better long-term growth profile relative to its pre-pandemic position. Full-year 2021 net sales ended 13% above 2019, adjusted operating profit 14% higher than 2019, and adjusted earnings per share 26% above 2019. The balance sheet also strengthened with leverage declining to 2.7 times on a net debt-to-adjusted EBITDA basis.

The company increased its 2024 revenue target to approximately $8 billion, which includes an increase in Champion brand sales to approximately $3.2 billion. The company's adjusted operating margin increased to approximately 14.4% and cumulative three-year free cash flow increased to approximately $1.6 billion. The company also authorized a three-year $600 million share repurchase plan.

Net sales from continuing operations for Q4 ended at $1.75 billion, an increase of $63 million, or 4% growth.

lululemon athletica Inc. (NASDAQ: LULU)

lululemon athletica Inc., headquartered in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, designs, distributes, and retails athletic apparel and accessories. It operates through company-operated stores and direct-to-consumer divisions. The company-operated stores segment comprises lululemon and ivivva brands and specializes in athletic wear for female youth. The direct-to-consumer segment has to do with the company's e-commerce business and building brand awareness, particularly in new markets. The company was founded by Dennis J. Wilson in 1998 and is headquartered in Vancouver, Canada.

In Q3 2021, net revenue increased 30% to $1.5 billion. On a constant dollar basis, net revenue increased 28%. Net revenue increased 28% in North America and increased 40% internationally.

Total comparable sales increased 27% and comparable store sales increased 32%. Direct to consumer net revenue increased 23% to $586.5 million. On a constant dollar basis, direct-to-consumer net revenue increased 21%. Gross profit increased 32% to $829.4 million and income from operations increased 26% to $257.9 million. Adjusted income from operations increased 32% to $282.1 million. The company also opened 18 net new company-operated stores during the third quarter, ending with 552 stores.

Unifi (NYSE: UFI)

Unifi Inc., headquartered in Greensboro, North Carolina, manufactures and sells synthetic and recycled products made from polyester and nylon. It makes REPREVE fiber products and is one of the world's leading innovators in recycled and synthetic yarns. The company has four segments: polyester, nylon, Brazil, and Asia. The polyester segment sells polyester-based products to other yarn manufacturers, knitters, and weavers that produce yarn and fabric for apparel, hosiery, home furnishings, automotive, industrial, and other end-use markets in the U.S. and El Salvador. The nylon segment brings nylon-based products to knitters and weavers and produces fabric for the apparel and hosiery markets in the U.S. and Colombia. The Brazil and Asia segments produce polyester-based fabric for the apparel, home furnishings, automotive, industrial, and other end-use markets in South America and Asia.

Net sales in the second fiscal quarter were $201.4 million, representing an increase of 23.7% from the second quarter of fiscal 2021. Revenues from REPREVE represented 40% of net sales, which represented an increase from 38% in the second quarter of fiscal 2021. Operating income was $4.6 million compared to $13.1 million for the second quarter of fiscal 2021. Net income was $0.9 million, or $0.05 diluted EPS, compared to net income of $7.5 million, or $0.40 diluted EPS for the second quarter of fiscal 2021.

The company repurchased 51,500 shares of its common stock for $1.2 million during the second quarter of fiscal 2022.

Consider Textile Stocks for Your Portfolio

Textiles and apparel may not readily come to mind when you get started investing. However, these types of stocks offer viable options for investors who want to build a long-term portfolio.

With improved store traffic, digital trends, and e-commerce building, companies in textiles have continually built their e-commerce sites, upgraded mobile apps, and enhanced payment and fulfillment options. (Curbside delivery has hit the norm for many across the U.S.!) However, it's important to take a look at the underlying business model of any textile or apparel manufacturer and invest accordingly.

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