Newsflash: At The Motley Fool, we're not huge fans of Wall Street.
Whatever the reason, we Foolishly believe that Joe and Jane Investor can pick stocks just as well as Nigel and Vivian CFA. That's why we created Motley Fool CAPS, harnessing the small-w wisdom of the capital-F Foolish crowd to pick the winners of tomorrow. Problem is, not everyone is pulling their weight.
For the most part, the 81,000 investors currently on CAPS are telling us what we already know: Altria
Thanks for playing. No, really!
Not that we don't appreciate the effort. We do. But today, I'm asking you to broaden your horizons a bit. We still have literally hundreds of stocks out there in CAPS-land that lack the 10 ratings necessary to earn them a CAPS "star" rating.
Where you come in
I'd like to introduce you to just three of these hundreds. If you know the companies in question, please take a moment to tell us whether you like them or hate them, and why. It's really as simple as that.
This 48-year-old bank operates 27 branch locations in 13 Texas cities, offering everything from savings accounts to home mortgages to online banking. Nine Fools have rated it, and a bare majority like it -- but so far, all three of the CAPS All-Star players who've looked at Southside think it's a longtime loser. Care to tell them why they're wrong? Here's your chance.
Seven-year-old Virtual Radiologic is as far removed from Southside in industry as it is in age. VR works in the field of "remote diagnostic image interpretation," helping staff-stretched hospitals get the results of MRI, ultrasound, and similar medical imaging read in a hurry. Thanks to the magic of the Internet, this one little company is at the beck and call of nearly 500 separate medical facilities nationwide. Pretty cool business, huh? That's probably why this stock gets 100% positive feedback on CAPS. (Feel free to spoil the party if you must.)
You've seen its commercials -- "I'm now a successful technician in the commercial HVAC field!" But did you know that Lincoln Tech is also a public company? (If you didn't, don't feel bad. It only went public in 2005.) Eight investors like Lincoln, but the only All-Star who has voted thinks it's a dud. Now it's your turn to grade this stock a pass/fail.
Help us, Obi-Wan. You're our only hope.
Each of the above stocks currently falls just one vote short of earning its CAPS stars. That gives you the chance to play the hero today. Literally, with just a click of your mouse, you can provide the deciding vote that puts any one of these stocks over the top, and let's everyone else on CAPS know whether it's ready to trounce the market, or trip over its own feet.
Once again, our candidates are:
Fool contributor Rich Smith does not own shares of any company named above. J&J is a recommendation of Income Investor. You can find Rich on CAPS, publicly pontificating under the handle TMFDitty, where he's currently ranked No. 1,268 out of more than 43,000 rated players. The Fool has a disclosure policy.