Tomorrow's Monster Stock?

Stocks climbing to 10 times their original price are rare breeds -- but they're not impossible to find. Especially when you have Fools for friends.

The market's best stocks include companies that have increased dozens of times in value by taking advantage of the market's weaknesses. These aren't penny stocks; they're viable companies with sound prospects and are achieving phenomenal returns. Finding just one or two of these monstrously successful companies can help you establish a winning portfolio.

Stalking the monster
To find tomorrow's winners, we've enlisted the help of more than 145,000 monster trackers at Motley Fool CAPS. We've compiled a list of the most successful CAPS members, dubbed All-Stars, whose picks have doubled, tripled, or even quadrupled in price. Then we've plucked out some of their recent picks for stocks they find equally promising.

Player

CAPS Member Rating

Monster Stock

CAPS Score

Recent Stock Pick

CAPS Rating (out of 5)

BravoBevo

100.00

First Solar (Nasdaq: FSLR  )

547.09

Southwest Airlines (NYSE: LUV  )

***

vanamonde

99.99

Freddie Mac

125.70

American Capital (Nasdaq: ACAS  )

****

bbmaven

99.98

Intuitive Surgical (Nasdaq: ISRG  )

165.48

Jones Lang LaSalle

*****

translator999

99.98

ATP Oil & Gas

400.24

Alcoa (NYSE: AA  )

****

kdakota630

99.95

Massey Energy

205.71

Western Refining (NYSE: WNR  )

*****

Of course, this is not a list of stocks to buy -- or, for those monster stocks that our CAPS All-Stars have already found, sell. Just consider them starting points for your own further research into extreme buying opportunities.

In search of Bigfoot
The financial-sector meltdown was obviously one of the biggest news stories last year, but many investors may not realize that it also turned into one of the biggest opportunities, too. The 1,000 companies comprising the CAPS Financials sector returned more than 20% on average, almost matching the returns of the market itself. For an industry that was on the verge of wreaking worldwide havoc, that was a significant achievement.

Of course, it was an uneven performance. Where an asset management firm like Blackstone (NYSE: BX  ) doubled in value in 2009, business development company American Capital nearly imploded and ultimately defaulted on its debt covenants. It took a yeoman's effort from it to reach agreements with lenders to renegotiate all of its $2.4 billion in unsecured debt, but it had to pledge virtually all of the company's assets.

More than 2,000 CAPS members have rated American Capital, and 95% of them still believe it will outperform the market. There's good reason to concur. The investments American Capital has made in businesses over the years will allow it to divest some of them, giving it enough liquidity to regain its footing.

CAPS member tartarshaman understands the risks American Capital faces, but believes management will have learned from this episode:

One sad looking chart, but I like this Malon's [CEO Malon Wilkus] style. It took a pair to build this company, and I bet that old school business savvy will allow ACAS to survive and thrive. Diversified. Dealing with debt. Who isn't.

Over on the American Capital CAPS page, tell us whether you think this company can develop into a winner.

Searching for growth
Aluminum inventories remain ahead of the demand curve, and if economies worldwide don't rebound this year (or, worse, if they slip into a double-dip recession), producers like Alcoa could find themselves in a bind. The International Aluminum Institute says as of the end of October, inventories were 81% above where they were back in 2008. With China potentially producing more this year, some analysts worry that there will be too much supply pressure.

But this isn't a monolithic view, because others say the focus on China is too great. There are other factors that will help improve pricing, particularly that of alumina. That would seem to conform with the opinion held by the 2,700 CAPS members who've rated Alcoa, 93% of whom believe it will surpass the broader market averages.

Head over to the Alcoa CAPS page and share your opinion on this aluminum industry leader.

A chance for scary growth
It takes more than a few All-Star picks and a quick paragraph to make buy or sell decisions, so start your own research on these stocks on Motley Fool CAPS. You can read a company's financial reports, scrutinize key data and charts, and examine the comments your fellow investors have made -- all from a stock's CAPS page. And while you're there, weigh in with your own thoughts on whether you think these are tomorrow's monster stocks.

First Solar and Intuitive Surgical are Motley Fool Rule Breakers recommendations. The Fool has a financial position in Intuitive Surgical and Jones Lang LaSalle. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days.

Fool contributor Rich Duprey does not have a financial position in any of the stocks mentioned in this article. You can see his holdings. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.


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