Maybe you haven't tried out our Foolish CAPS screener yet. After all, there are tons of other stock screening tools on the wild, vast Internet, so what's the big deal?

In that case, you're missing out. Our CAPS community provides a wealth of market-moving data that you simply can't find anywhere else -- and it's dead easy to find what you're looking for, too.

Hands-on laboratory
For starters, take these simple criteria for a good stock and what they show:

  • 5 CAPS stars today, indicating a well-respected stock that members expect to outperform the market from here on out.
  • More than 1,000 active CAPS ratings -- a solid body of community-powered data!
  • No more than 3 Wall Street picks. By and large, the analyst herd has missed this quality stock, which often leads to delectable mispricing.

You can run this screen for yourself, and rearrange over 40 screening points to your liking. Just keep in mind that the market is an ever-moving target, and your results will probably look slightly different from mine. The search I just described returned 24 results on March 4, including these beauties:


No.  of CAPS Ratings

No.  of Wall Street Ratings on CAPS

Sasol (NYSE:SSL)



Tata Motors (NYSE:TTM)



iShares MSCI Brazil Index (NYSE:EWZ)



Aluminum Corporation of China (NYSE:ACH)



Morningstar (NASDAQ:MORN)



Oilsands Quest (NYSE:BQI)






"Wall Street ratings" are opinions from industry analysts and big-name media personalities like Jim Cramer. This screen shines a spotlight on stocks that the professionals have largely ignored, whereas our CAPS community dug 'em up and declared them ready for greatness. The gulf between our members' passionate interest and Wall Street's indifference is strikingly large. You can't find that chasm anywhere else -- and once you run the screen, you have a treasure trove of deeper insight just a couple of clicks away.

What are we looking at, Fool?
In many cases, the analysts are absent simply because we're talking about an exchange-traded fund or foreign companies with ADR shares. That's hardly an excuse for missing out on potential superstars like the iShares Brazil ETF or Aluminum of China, though. Low-priced potential gems such as Oilsands Quest and Northgate Minerals often get the cold shoulder from Wall Street simply because of where they're trading. That's not a very defensible complaint, either, unless you're trading millions of shares at a time. Buy-side analysts from Goldman Sachs might do that. Most of us don't, though.

Other oversights are more puzzling -- shouldn't every self-respecting investor have at least a passing knowledge of Morningstar? "With all the Wall Street analysts being laid off, Morningstar will be the place to go," says CAPS member yarbtly, with a generous helping of irony. "Plus, they don't have any hidden agendas."

That's just a few of the reasons why Morningstar has gathered a 97% approval rating among more than 1,000 raters. You can also match the analysis in CAPS against the findings of our Motley Fool Stock Advisor analyst team -- Tom Gardner has tapped Morningstar twice for our flagship newsletter service.

Parting words
Whatever the reasons, CAPS members know about these fine stocks, but Wall Street really doesn't. More and better information is the secret to becoming a happy investor, and this sprawling stock-lovers' community can provide that in spades.

Dig into the nitty-gritty member commentaries and the handy fundamental data you'll find in CAPS, and chances are that you'll find a couple of jet-fueled rocket stocks -- before they take off. Now, go ahead and abuse our screening system to your heart's content. It's there to help all of us make money.

Further Foolishness:

Tata Motors and Sasol are Motley Fool Global Gains picks. Sasol is also an Income Investor recommendation. Unit and Morningstar are Motley Fool Stock Advisor picks. The Fool owns shares of Morningstar. Try any of our Foolish newsletters today, free for 30 days.

Fool contributor Anders Bylund holds no position in any of the companies discussed here. You can check out Anders' holdings  or a concise bio if you like, and The Motley Fool is investors writing for investors.