NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- As shakey as U.S. and European markets have been emerging markets have been shakier. Yet the latter may offer bargains for several world-leading companies.
The companies below have significant potential to grow largely because they are well-run and in sectors and regions where demand is solid -- or better. Their industries also offer staples that are unlikely to tail off soon. Singapore Telecommunications (SGAPY) , provides multimedia and telecom services in Singapore and Australia, whose economies are on sound footing. HDFC Bank (HDB - Get Report) is India's second largest private sector bank, and Brazil's Vale (VALE - Get Report) is the world's largest producer of iron ore and pellets.
None of these companies were part of the 29 Most Dangerous Stocks list for September (you can grab a free copy by clicking here).
Singapore Telecommunications shares currently sport a yield of 5.8% and a prospective P/E of 16. With a solid balance sheet and a decent return on equity, the company offers a low-risk way of investing in high-tech development in two of the world's most attractive economies.
Currently trading around $27 a share, it's down from its 52-week high of around $34. As Singapore's economy continues to prosper, this telecom provider will likely expand.
HDFC Bank has strong positions in corporate, treasury and retail banking segments.
Bank of America Merrill Lynch reported that India is on pace to overtake Brazil this year as the world's second-largest emerging market following China. Its trajectory could move it past the developed countries of France in 2017 and the UK in 2019. It is the fastest growing emerging market among BRIC countries.
HDFC Bank's corporate asset quality is robust, and it has 100% coverage for problem assets, the highest rate among its peers. And a Tier 1 ratio of 10.6% provides sufficient capital to sustain growth for many years. The bank's portfolio comprises 60% retail loans and 40% corporate loans.
HDFC Bank's retail loans were traditionally concentrated in the non-mortgage space. But it has started buying mortgages from HDFC with the expectation that home loans will account for an increasing portion of its profits. The bank, one of the best-run in India, offers good exposure to the country's long-term growth.
Analysts expect its revenues to jump from $6.1 billion for its current fiscal year (ending next March), to $7.3 billion the next year.
Metals and mining company Vale is also the world's second-largest producer of nickel, and one of the leading producers of manganese and alloys. It also provides coal, copper, bauxite and aluminum.
The iron ore sector should perform well for years to come. Demand from emerging economies remains robust, while supply remains tight because the recession forced the postponement or cancellation of a number of new projects. Also, Vale has been gaining over upstart Indian producers because it offers a higher-quality iron that buyers favor.
The company's share price has suffered in recent months along with the general downturn in commodity prices, and it fell further when Standard & Poor's downgraded Brazil's bond rating to junk status. The price is now near the bottom of its 52-week range ($5 a share, versus a 52-week high of $12.45) , even though its fundamentals remain solid. It may be the riskiest of these three investments, but also the one that offers the biggest potential return.