A football bowl game may have only one winner, but investing offers many roads toward profits. We don't need to find the "best" stock year after year to secure our financial future -- we just need to find really good stocks, really consistently. Now, the collective intelligence of our 80,000-plus Motley Fool CAPS investors makes that task easier than ever.

For every high-rated stock on CAPS -- like five-star-rated LCD-maker Corning (NYSE: GLW), which has been riding the wave of demand for flat-screen televisions -- there's an even better stock above it in the rankings. Just look for the "Beat This Stock!" button in the top right corner of each stock's CAPS page. Click that button enough times, and you'll climb the CAPS ladder toward the service's No. 1-ranked stock. Along the way, you'll gain a handful of stock ideas that might help you beat the market by an even wider margin than your favorite firm.

So who ranks better than Corning? Below are five stocks that ranked higher in the opinion of CAPS investors than the maker of screens for laptops, desktops, and TVs. CAPS is a dynamic service, so while these were the companies generated this morning, the list may be different for you:


1-Year Return

LT Growth Forecast

CAPS Rating (out of 5)





TGC Industries (Nasdaq: TGE)




Atheros Communications (Nasdaq: ATHR)




Westinghouse Air Break Technologies (NYSE: WAB)




Gen-Probe (Nasdaq: GPRO)




iShares MSCI EAFE Index  (NYSE: EFA)




Sources: Yahoo! Finance; Motley Fool CAPS.

This is obviously not a list of stocks to buy; instead, it should be a springboard for your own due diligence. Still, let's examine some of the reasons why CAPS investors think these companies' returns will beat Corning and the market alike.

A pox on both your houses
Viruses are usually detected through the body's production of antibodies, which is a lengthy process. When Edward Jenner produced the first smallpox vaccine in 1796, he started a whole new field of medicine -- and commerce. Today, smallpox is no longer a danger, thanks to mass immunization. But in most cases, doctors must still wait for the body to produce antibodies before virus detection or treatment can begin.

Viruses persist today, HIV among them, and improvements in detection are always being sought. One recently developed method -- called nucleic acid amplification testing, or NAT assays -- allows for improving the safety of the blood supply at hospitals. As its name suggests, it amplifies and detects the genetic makeup of a virus without having to wait for the body to produce antibodies.

Gen-Probe is primarily a manufacturer of clinical diagnostic products that test for sexually transmitted diseases, along with blood-screening products used to test for HIV using NAT assays. It derived 96% of its revenue from these products last quarter, while receiving nominal revenue from Novartis (NYSE: NVS) and others for collaborative R&D activities. Earnings per share rose 10% in the third quarter to $0.31 a diluted share on a 10% increase in revenue, handily beating analyst forecasts.

Almost 150 investors have rated Gen-Probe over at CAPS, with 97% of them thinking it will continue to outperform the market. Top-rated All-Star longshort87 sees its ability to commercialize its intellectual portfolio as a sign it will be successful in the long run. Here's his pitch from last November:

Impressive portfolio of intellectual property related to nucleic acid testing and a solid operating record of transferring that IP into commercially successful products with recurring revenue streams. Rich pipeline of future products, $6/share of cash, zero debt, mid-high teens organic revenue growth. Also potentially an attractive takeover target for a larger diagnostics firm (Roche? Abbott?).

Just beat it!
Is CAPS correct? These companies may rate higher than Corning, but will they actually top its performance going forward? Head to Motley Fool CAPS and share your opinion on your favorite stock to beat.

Atheros Communications is a recommendation of Motley Fool Hidden Gems. Get 30 days of market-beating free stock picks with a risk-free trial subscription.

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.