When a stock hits a fresh low, it can either signal a dirt cheap dream stock or a dreadful stock to avoid. Separating the wheat from the chaff is difficult, but finding well-run companies at bargain-basement prices is a great way to accumulate a fortune over the long run.

With that in mind, we'll use the aggregate intelligence of the 120,000-plus investors participating in Motley Fool CAPS to see what the community is saying about stocks hitting 52-week lows today. The community's approval (signified by four- and five-star ratings) could indicate that further research is in order.

Here are three such stocks:


Today’s Intraday Price


CAPS Rating (out of 5)

Fools Saying Outperform



Industrial Electrical Equipment

5 Stars

478 of 499

Arch Coal (NYSE:ACI)


Industrial Metals & Minerals

5 Stars

1079 of 1119

Himax Technologies (NASDAQ:HIMX)


Semiconductor - Specialized

5 Stars

655 of 674

Source: Motley Fool CAPS, as of Oct. 28, 2008.

Top-rated industrial electrical equipment companies:

  • Woodward Governor (NASDAQ:WGOV): Stock price is -16% lower than last year.
  • Ametek (NYSE:AME): Stock price is -40% lower than last year.

Top-rated industrial metals & minerals companies:

  • Alliance Resource Partners (NASDAQ:ARLP): Stock price is -23% lower than last year.
  • International Coal Group (NYSE:ICO): Stock price is -44% lower than last year.

Join us on CAPS to learn more about these and countless other interesting stock ideas.