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Stocks on the Road to Greatness

For every stock out there screaming, "buy me," others simply give us a nudge and a nod. While all the attention might be focused on their five-star peers, we can sift through Motley Fool CAPS to find four-star stocks giving us the "high sign" they're approaching greatness. 

These opportunities -- including familiar names and beaten-down companies -- rank higher than most of the other 5,400 starred companies, and it pays to investigate their potential. For consideration today, I've got a pair of stocks on their way to fame and glory.


Market Cap

1-Yr. Rev. Growth

1-Yr. EPS Growth

1-Yr. Stock Return

Paramount Gold & Silver (AMEX: PZG  )

$367 million




Zoltek (Nasdaq: ZOLT  )

$325 million




Source: Motley Fool CAPS.

As the 180,000-plus CAPS members have chosen these companies as less obvious sources for tomorrow's great buys, let's see why they might merit your attention.

In the sight of greatness
Once again Paramount Gold & Silver has come back with higher assay results from its wholly owned San Miguel mine in Mexico. This time, both the Don Ese and La Union veins continue to confirm the strength of what is proving to be a top-notch zone of exploration. That it's adjacent to Coeur D'Alene Mines' (NYSE: CDE  ) own rich concessions should not come as much of a surprise and helps explain why Paramount expects measured and indicated resources for this deposit to increase significantly.

Coupled with its Sleeper project in Nevada, which the silver shop believes has an M&I resource of 2.6 million ounces of gold and 25.3 million ounces of silver, Paramount can continue doing what it does best, exploring for these rich veins, and then trying to interest a partner to do the actual dirty work. As it says, it's not a mining company, so it will need someone like a Newmont Mining (NYSE: NEM  ) or a Barrick Gold to actually get the ore out of the ground.

CAPS All-Star member limanova sees its growing portfolio as an inducement to partners of a different sort too: the buyout kind: "Great reserves, dwindling resource=great value to buyout or begin mining partnership."

Put Paramount on your watchlist, and let us know in the comments section below if you think there will be a rush to this gold and silver specialist's door.

No blowback
The wind is still at the back of carbon fiber manufacturer Zoltek, which reported another gust of sales and profits as wind turbine customers boosted revenues 50% in the first quarter. It expanded its customer base and is utilizing its capacity more fully to benefit from currency effects on operations.

Zoltek is confident that its advanced wind turbines segment will grow at an annual rate of 15% to 25% for the next decade.

That might not be just hot air, though it's bound to hit turbulence. President Obama plans to make areas off Maryland and New Jersey coasts available to wind-energy developers by the end of the year. Google is partner in a project to build offshore transmissions lines between New Jersey and Virginia, and Public Service Enterprise Group is backing a wind farm off the Jersey shore in sight of Snooki and The Situation. But before they'll be able to "smush," they'll need to overcome financing issues such as those that caused NRG Energy (NYSE: NRG  ) to halt its Delaware wind farm proposal.

Green energy is taking its lumps these days, but Zoltek appears to be growing against the grain, and with 96% of nearly 750 CAPS members rating the carbon fiber manufacturer to outperform the markets going forward, it doesn't appear to be an ill wind blowing no one any good.

Tell us in the comments section below or on the Zoltek CAPS page whether it will continue to deliver the goods for investors, and then add it to your watchlist to see if the loftier valuation turns out to be worth it.

A great opportunity for you
Investor sentiment suggests these four-star investments still seem to be on their way to five-star greatness, but if you're looking for just one energy stock to play in 2012, click here to read The Motley Fool's free report, "The Only Energy Stock You'll Ever Need." But do it today, because, like low energy prices, it won't be around for long.

Fool contributor Rich Duprey owns shares of Paramount Gold and Silver, but he holds no other position in any company mentioned. Click here to see his holdings and a short bio. The Motley Fool owns shares of Google. Motley Fool newsletter services have recommended buying shares of Google. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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