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Volatility is picking up, with the Omicron variant causing global jitters across financial markets. While Omicron and other COVID variants pose a serious risk to the economy in the new year, I think that the recent surge in volatility is not necessarily a sign that next year will be some sort of write-off year.

There’s no question that we’re heard many pundits and market strategists dismissing 2022 as a weaker year for the markets in the way of returns. Pending a drastic drawdown in December 2021, 2021 is going to be a year that will be tough to top in terms of returns. Still, anything is possible, and for stock pickers, it is still possible to keep up solid returns. Indeed, there are few alternatives to equities these days, especially with hot inflation that raises the opportunity costs of holding cash.

Top Canadian stocks for 2022?

Still, valuations always matter! And while some may be quick to dismiss the market as too expensive, there are pockets of value. On the TSX, there are many bargains out there that should continue to fare well, regardless of what markets do next. Remember, volatility doesn’t necessarily mean risk. In fact, stock pickers should relish the moment that stocks fluctuate 2-3% or more on a daily basis! It provides opportunity to pick up stocks that may be priced with great inefficiency. Mr. Market isn’t always spot on with pricing stocks at close to their true worth (their intrinsic value), especially when there are profound uncertainties that trouble the broader markets. Macroeconomic exogenous risks can be a shocker and cause momentary blips of market inefficiency across the board.

In this piece, we’ll have a look at a great TSX stock I’d be willing to scoop up in December 2021. Now, it’s hard to time a bottom in a stock, especially in the face of unprecedented volatility. That said, long-term investors can stretch every dollar pretty far as long as they’re willing to endure a bit of short-term pain.

Spin Master (TSX:TOY) isn’t just a toy company that trades on the TSX. It’s a company that may very well have the keys to the metaverse over the next decade and beyond. The metaverse is more than just a buzzword. It represents a profound technological shift that may very well draw comparisons to the internet in the early to mid-1990s. Back then, the internet was an intriguing, albeit still abstract concept for people who haven’t had the opportunity to connect. The same, I believe, goes with the metaverse today.

The pandemic has likely propelled us several years into the future as far as innovation is concerned. With Omicron continuing to spread rapidly, I think the metaverse may very well be the go-to place to socialize without running the risk of contracting Omicron or any other variant of COVID.

Spin is still a toymaker at heart. Toys are the bread-and-butter business and will be for quite some time. But don’t underestimate the power of the metaverse and the company’s digital games growth, which, I believe, has been strongly discounted by the market. Yes, digital games are growing fast, but they’re not as influential to the overall slice of the revenue pie quite yet. This will change with time, most likely, especially if digital retains most of its momentum over the next few years.

Digital strength momentum is the reason to take the top Canadian stock for a spin in 2022

Toca Life World recently won an Apple App Store Award for being one of the best iPhone games of the year. The honour should not go unnoticed. Moving ahead, I suspect Spin will double down on its strength in digital games, and it may very well emerge as one of the stealth metaverse plays that could deliver incredible results for investors.

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