If you're aiming to "buy low and sell high," then it makes infinite sense to start your search with bargain-priced stocks. Regularly reviewing a list of stocks trading near their 52-week lows can be a great first step.
Here, I'll try to do the initial legwork for you. To prevent us from being inundated with scores of disparate companies, I'll conduct my search by industry. This will allow us to make some initial comparisons among semi-related companies.
There are 24 industry groups as defined by the Global Industry Classification Standard (GICS). Semiconductors and semiconductor equipment is one of them.
Below are the top seven companies in this space (by market cap) that are hugging 52-week lows.
% Change From 52-Week Low
P/E Ratio (Trailing)
|Intel Corp. (Nasdaq: INTC )
|Taiwan Semiconductor (NYSE: TSM )
|Applied Materials (Nasdaq: AMAT )
|STMicroelectronics (NYSE: STM )
|Xilinx (Nasdaq: XLNX )
|United Microelectronics Corp. (NYSE: UMC )
|Advanced Semiconductor Engineering (NYSE: ASX )
Source: Capital IQ, a division of Standard & Poor's. Data as of Oct. 24, 2010.
Semiconductors are tricky business. Obsolescence happens faster than you can say "Moore's law." That said, the two biggest players here catch my eye. Both pay dividends above 3%, so they're allowing investors to hedge their bets over time.
Intel is one of the stocks that famed investor Bill Miller thinks could go 50% higher if it paid out even more of its earnings as dividends. Click here for more on that.
Taiwan Semiconductor is in the high-tech portfolio that fellow Fool Tim Beyers has been tracking for 113 weeks. So far he's beating the market handily. Check out his latest here.
If you are interested in reading more about these stocks, add them to My Watchlist to find all of our Foolish analysis on them.
Editor's Note: A previous version of this article listed “% Change From 52-Week Low” values based on the home exchanges of foreign-based stocks. We have adjusted to reflect the U.S.-listed values.