SuperData, the industry researcher, has revealed that 2016 was the best year in the history of the video game industry. The total market value reached an astronomical $91 billion, thanks in large part to constant and impressive technological innovation, new platforms, and growing worldwide interest. In tandem, a number of gaming industry companies have had excellent years in the stock market as well. Activision Blizzard (ATVI) and Nintendo (NTDOY) were among the top performers in this area. If the video game boom continues, these stocks may be some of the best ones to watch this year.


U.S. investors often neglect companies outside of the U.S. market, particularly those that don't have the same recognition in this part of the world. NetEase (NTES) is one of those companies. The internet services company in China provides customers with online gaming packs and has created partnerships with a variety of global gaming companies to allow for distribution of popular titles across China. In recent weeks, NetEase announced the upcoming release of 29 new games for PCs and mobile devices, and it is expected that the company will continue to provide new games into 2017 as well. According to its valuation statistics, it is also a great bargain at this point.

Take-Two Interactive

Take-Two Interactive (TTWO) was one of the top performers in gaming in 2016, and the momentum shows no signs of slowing down into the new year, thanks to upcoming new gaming content and a focused push toward digital growth. For the last quarter of 2016, TTWO sales rose by over 20%, while at the same time its overall earnings are fairly low, leading to an absurdly high P/E ratio of 2,583. With a forward P/E of 19, many analysts are predicting this company is nonetheless primed for long-term growth in the months to come.


Not all video game leaders are manufacturers and designers, it turns out. NVIDIA (NVDA) has been working behind the scenes on exciting developments like VR. Thanks to a broadly diverse array of offerings, of which video games are only one small part, NVDA stock rose by about 220% in 2016. With a strong advantage on VR-capable laptops and gaming hardware, coupled with innovations in automobiles, AI, and more mean that it is likely to continue to grow and to remain at the forefront of tech sector attention for some time to come.


Rounding out the list is Microsoft (MSFT), which plans to release a new console later in 2017. Though it is far off in the quick-moving tech world, there is already buzz about Microsoft's latest contribution to the gaming industry and what it could mean for the company's stock prices.

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