The best stock right now, according to a consensus of more than 20,000 investors participating in Motley Fool CAPS, is a South African oil and gas company.


Sasol (NYSE:SSL) currently has more investor support than market darlings Apple and Google. In fact, the latter two don't even make CAPS investors' top 10.

And what companies make up the top 10, you ask?


Market Cap*





Satyam Computer (NYSE:SAY)


Actions Semiconductor (NASDAQ:ACTS)


Carpenter Tech (NYSE:CRS)


US Physical Therapy (NASDAQ:USPH)


NorthStar Realty (NYSE:NRF)


Precision Castparts




Prospect Energy


*In millions. Data provided by Capital IQ, a division of Standard & Poor's.

None of the companies on this list should be considered formal recommendations (although Sasol is a Motley Fool Global Gains choice), but rather starting points for further research. After all, if so many investors feel strongly about these companies, there has to be something about them worth looking into.

Common ground
The 10 stocks come from a variety of industries and geographic locations, but each of them do have one thing in common: positive earnings.

It's interesting to see that investors are largely favoring profitable companies over speculative concerns with negative earnings histories. Perhaps investor sentiment has shifted away from growth and more toward value following the tech collapse at the turn of the century.

Another notable trend in this group is dividends. Seven of the companies pay dividends to shareholders; NorthStar Realty and Prospect Energy sport yields of more than 8%.

Those juicy yields can be tempting, but it is possible that they're too good to be true. Your research will help you decide that for yourself.

Foolish final word
We'd love to hear what you think about these companies or any others you think are worthy of being included on this list in the future. If you want to add your two cents, sign up for Motley Fool CAPS. It won't cost you a penny, and there are plenty of other great stock ideas to peruse.

Todd Wenning does not own shares of any company mentioned. The Fool's disclosure policy is always a good buy.