Home » What Are Sin Stocks?

The New York Stock Exchange trades shares for over 2,800 companies… and that’s just one exchange! There are many exchanges all around the world, each with hundreds or even thousands of companies trading.

The world of investing is a great big overwhelming place. There are MANY different stocks for you to choose from. How do you decide what to invest in, and how do you do effective due diligence by comparing one potential investment to another?

To help them wrap their minds around the sheer magnitude of potential investments, investors tend to group similar stocks together; that is, investors create informal categories or labels for stocks of companies that operate in a similar space: tech stocks, automotive stocks, airline stocks, bank stocks, and so on.

Sin stocks is a similar label. Sin stocks are the publicly traded companies that sell so-called “sinful” products or services.

The three most common sub-categories of sin stocks are alcohol sin stocks (companies that make and sell beer, wine, and spirits), tobacco sin stocks (companies that make and sell cigarettes), and gambling sin stocks (companies that offer gambling services, such as casinos).

Although these three are the “big three” of sin stocks, there are other sub-categories as well — weapons or conflict sin stocks, sex or porn sin stocks, and the most recent addition to the list — marijuana sin stocks.

Therefore, sin stocks (also called “vice stocks”) is the informal label given to the stocks of publicly traded companies that sell something that might be considered taboo, prohibited, or highly restricted, and perhaps has a social stigma attached to it. For that reason, we at Sin Stocks Report believe that there are other potential sin stocks as well, such as for-profit prisons, predatory lenders, and companies that employ sweatshop labor.

Contrary to popular belief, sin stock investing is NOT the opposite of ethical investing or socially responsible investing, since ethical investors create their own ethical definitions which may or may include some or all sin stocks. (As an example, an ethical investor may choose to avoid alcohol, tobacco, and gambling stocks but have no problem investing in gun stocks). In addition, taboos changes constantly so a sin stock from yesterday may not be a sin stock tomorrow because of the level of acceptance of that taboo.

Sin stocks are traditionally considered to be recession-resistant and often high-dividend-paying stocks, although this broad category (like every other category of stocks) has many sin stocks of varying sizes and not all are as financially attractive.

Sin Stocks Report is your source for breaking news and compelling insight in the world of investing in this category of stocks. We started this site because we saw a shortage of people reporting in this area and we believed it to be a compelling category that is simply not receiving the attention it should be getting.

Your choice to invest in sin stocks is entirely to you and, just like every other investment that you could invest in, your sin stock investment needs to be aligned with your values and financial goals. And be sure to always do your due diligence.


Nothing on this site is a recommendation because, hey, I can't read your mind and I don't know what you have in your portfolio, and I'm not a licensed financial advisor. So never EVER trade without doing your due diligence. If you want more information about this fascinating topic, please check out the Sin Stocks Disclaimer page which basically says the same thing but more emphatically.