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3 Top Stocks at Half Price

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You love buying your shirts when they go on sale. And who can resist a buy-one-get-one-free offer? So when our stocks go on sale, why do we bemoan their low prices?

Smart investors like Warren Buffett or Marty Whitman love it when their stocks are suddenly selling at bargain-basement prices. For them, these companies become no-brainer buys.

The investors in the Motley Fool CAPS community also like a bargain, apparently. Below, you'll find three companies whose shares are selling at least 50% below their 52-week highs, but which still earn high honors from our investor-intelligence database. Consider it a BOGO sale on stocks.


CAPS Rating (out of 5)

% Off 12-Month High

Delta Petroleum (Nasdaq: DPTR  )



Lexicon Pharmaceuticals (Nasdaq: LXRX  )



Oilsands Quest (NYSE: BQI  )



Naturally, we want you to look a bit closer at these stocks before buying. You can get low-priced appliances in the dent-and-ding section of your home-remodeling superstore, but their quality might not be so good. Same thing here: Make sure there's nothing seriously wrong with the company before you plug it into your portfolio.

Take two, they're small
The precarious financial condition of Delta Petroleum has been a known quantity for investors for some time as it burned through cash and tapped the equity markets to keep running. Suffering from the failure of wells to produce, it warned that unless it could renegotiate its credit facilities, it probably wouldn't be able to repay the loans due in January.

Yet it just may be that Delta is finally turning itself around. It's in negotiations with lenders and expects to have an agreement soon. Like EOG Resources (NYSE: EOG  ) and Talisman Energy (NYSE: TLM  ) before it, Delta sold a package of its non-core assets. Delta sold them to Wapiti Oil & Gas for $130 million as a means of reducing its debt load, and it actually generated a 30% increase in oil and gas sales as natural gas prices more than doubled and oil rose 31% from the year ago period.

CAPS member ImmortalThanos is unconvinced the oil and gas E&P can overcome its history of underperformance:

Having DPTR linked to SISM is one nail in this pick's coffin. The other is that DPTR has only ever outperformed the S&P for short spurts between 2006 and 2008. Go underperform on this slug of a stock.

A reserve player
The pipeline of potentially successful therapies has been one of the main attractions of Lexicon Pharmaceuticals, with both omarsharif123 and JuanPeter believing that's the key to future growth:

It has several [drugs] in the pipeline and one or two have good change to get to the market. This is a potential grand slam stock.

Its recent acquisition of Symphony Icon further bolsters its portfolio, and it now has a pipeline that includes candidates under development for irritable bowel syndrome, carcinoid syndrome, and diabetes.

With friends like these
The rising price of oil may help oil sands developers like Suncor (NYSE: SU  ) achieve the growth and profits they're looking for, but it probably won't be enough for Oilsands Quest, which has decided to put itself up for sale. It had previously tried to sell some of its assets to Canshale, but when the buyer couldn't raise the money, Oilsands turned to other strategic alternatives, including its own potential sale.

CAPS member Revler1082 believes oilsands development holds more long-term promise than other alternatives.

Long term oil has nowhere else to go but up, and we'll be killing each other over oil sands long before we learn to dial back our life styles.

Have half a mind
Sign up today for the completely free CAPS service, and tell us whether these stocks are twice as good at half the price. Or not.

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

Read/Post Comments (1) | Recommend This Article (16)

Comments from our Foolish Readers

Help us keep this a respectfully Foolish area! This is a place for our readers to discuss, debate, and learn more about the Foolish investing topic you read about above. Help us keep it clean and safe. If you believe a comment is abusive or otherwise violates our Fool's Rules, please report it via the Report this Comment Report this Comment icon found on every comment.

  • Report this Comment On September 09, 2010, at 10:54 PM, ChrisFs wrote:

    You can say that oil can only go up, but it's not just oil going up, it's whether Oil Sands can stay afloat and get that oil cheaper than other companies. Both those are big questions.

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DPTR.DL $0.00 Down +0.00 +0.00%
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