Thursday's Top 5 Growth Winners

Ask cheapskate value investors to buy a stock that's achieved a new 52-week high and you'll get one of two responses:

  1. Hysterical laughter.
  2. Sudden nausea.

Pity them, Fool.

How many times has Hansen Natural (Nasdaq: HANS  ) touched a new 52-week high on its way to becoming one of the market's 10 best stocks of the past decade? Too many to count, of course. Never assume that "rocket stocks" -- high-growth stocks that are also realizing heavy price appreciation -- are too expensive. What looks like a cliff could really be base camp on a climb to the summit of Everest.

Rocket stocks, not rocket science
Each weekday in this column, we'll enlist the more than 79,000 pro and amateur stock pickers in our Motley Fool CAPS community to find stocks that are still climbing. We'll start with The Wall Street Journal's 52-week-high lists. But we'll focus our search on stocks expected to boost net income at least 15% a year for the next five years, and whose CAPS ratings have at least two of the maximum five stars.

Here's what we've turned up today:

Company

Closing Price
01/03/2008

CAPS Rating
(5 max)

5-Year Growth
Estimate

52-Week
Range

Suntech Power (NYSE:STP)

$88.22

****

44.5%

$31.41-$88.65

Monsanto (NYSE:MON)

$120.92

****

35.0%

$49.10-$123.00

China Medical Tech. (NASDAQ:CMED)

$49.50

*****

30.3%

$21.65-$48.25

Ramtron International (NASDAQ:RMTR)

$4.64

***

20.0%

$2.40-$4.85

Jacobs Engineering (NYSE:JEC)

$101.58

*****

17.5%

$38.25-$103.29

Sources: The Wall Street Journal, Yahoo! Finance, Motley Fool CAPS.

Our mostly small-cap list features some promising, though speculative, stocks. Yet these tiny titans can create astounding returns if they're bought before the market discovers them. Witness Rule Breakers pick Suntech Power, which has exploded for a 152% gain over the past 52 weeks. The S&P 500 is up just 2% over the same period.

You should see CMED
China Medical Technology hasn't done as well as its mainland peer but, with an 83% gain over the past year, it is still a massive market-beater. Here's why:

Revenue

FY 2007

FY 2006

FY 2005

FY 2004

In Chinese Renminbi

547.0

371.8

217.8

110.8

Source: Capital IQ, a division of Standard & Poor's.

That's three years of 70% average annual growth!

Some investors see more gains on the way, thanks to the company's innovations in cancer treatment. Here's how CAPS All-Star kwfisher put it in March:

... HIFU technology approval for use in the U.S. and other large foreign markets is the big potential payoff, but these approvals are not necessary for the stock to be a compelling value today. Its diagnostics systems appear to provide a steady and substantial source of growth on their own.

Indeed, according to Capital IQ, China Medical trades for 26 times this year's earnings for a low 0.87 PEG ratio. Will Danoff of the Fidelity Contrafund (FCNTX) apparently believes that's too cheap. He was a buyer as of October.

What about you? Would you buy China Medical at today's prices? Let us know by signing up for CAPS now. It's 100% free to participate.

I'll be back Tuesday with more rocket stocks.


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