The Best Stock You Could've Bought: SQM

Anyone would love to own the next multibagger stock. Of course, most of us just don't have the time in our busy schedules to (1) figure out exactly what makes for a home run investment, and (2) scour the entire stock universe for one that fits the bill.

Fortunately, more than 110,000 individual and professional investors over at Motley Fool CAPS, the Fool's free investing community, are working as a team to single out sensational stocks. And so far, the results have been top-notch.

Red hot Chile pepper
In January, for example, Sociedad Quimica y Minera (NYSE: SQM  ) was ranked as one of the 10 best stocks in CAPS. As the world's largest supplier of lithium, our community loved the Chilean chemical company as a play on the growth of eco-friendly, electric and hybrid vehicles. In December 2007, CAPS player cfsguy99 had this to say about the company also known as Chemical and Mining Co. of Chile:

Lithium is the current 'next generation' battery technology of the near future. There are others (see what [Caterpillar (NYSE: CAT  ) ] is working on), but with the release of several L-Ion battery based cars coming out in 2008, now would be a good time to invest in producers of industry materials.

Since Sociedad's appearance on the January "Best Stocks" list, the shares are up about 200%, thanks in large part to its additional agriculture exposure -- talk about some smoking-hot business segments.

The rest of the list hasn't done too shabbily, either. Seven of the 10 are currently topping the market, including Emerson Electric (NYSE: EMR  ) , ICON (Nasdaq: ICLR  ) , and Tele Norte Leste Participacoes (NYSE: TNE  ) . They're up 5%, 15%, and 21%, respectively. Pride International (NYSE: PDE  ) , CAPS' top stock in January, has risen 47% since being featured.

With all the market mayhem we've experienced lately, I'd say those are some pretty respectable results.

All that is CAPS is prelude
Of course, if your contrarian spirit would rather pan for stocks that haven't left the ground yet, have no worries. In our Motley Fool CAPS database, you can gain valuable insights on more than 5,500 rated stocks, many of which are just beginning their ascension to market-trouncing heaven.

To get a bead on the next Sociedad Quimica, join CAPS today. It's 100% free.

Fool contributor Brian Pacampara owns no position in any of the companies mentioned. The Fool's disclosure policy never gets away from you.

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