Some stocks are one-hit wonders that make a big splash when they first appear and then quickly fizzling into obscurity or oblivion. But for other stocks, that initial big move is only a preview for even bigger and better gains to come.

Today, we've compiled nine stocks that made some of the biggest upward moves over the past month. We'll then pair that list with the ratings issued by our Motley Fool CAPS community. The higher each stock's rating, the greater CAPS members' faith in that company's ability to keep on beating the market.


30-Day % Change

CAPS Rating (Out of 5)

MAP Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:MAPP)









Savient Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:SVNT)



The Talbots






Avanir Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:AVNR)






Nymox Pharmaceutical (NYSE:NYMX)



Five of those nine are either biotech or pharmaceutical companies. A couple have had good news (such as MAP Pharma), while the whole sector has been boosted by attention because of the H1N1 virus. However, they're pretty low-rated on CAPS. Let's look at one and see whether that low rating is justified.

A mighty temblor
Last summer, I had picked Savient Pharmaceuticals to outperform the market. My rationale at the time was that its gout therapy Puricase was a potential winner in an estimated $600 million market, not insubstantial for an orphan drug. Further, because of the declining pipeline of many pharmaceutical giants, I figured Savient would be a nice addition to a larger company.

I was a bit early with my call, and closed it out with a loss on my scorecard. Patience, they tell me, is a virtue. It took about a year, but the FDA may finally approve Krystexxa, the drug's new name, and shares of the pharma shot northward 50% on the speculation. There are some yellow flags, though, with the possible approval, in that some patients suffered some serious side effects. But the panel of experts recommended 14-1 that the agency give it the nod.

Serious side effects and approvals are not mutually exclusive events. As the Fool's pharmaceutical guru Brian Orelli noted, Biogen Idec and Elan (NYSE:ELN) won approval for Tysabri even though there are potentially fatal side effects from its usage. Not that investors in either of those two companies haven't had their own set of travails as the treatment wound its way through the regulatory labyrinth.

Although the agency doesn't have to follow the recommendation -- it famously went against the panel's blessing with Dendreon's Provenge -- it often does. That's not enough to convince some investors. Highly rated CAPS All-Star member zzlangerhans finds that after that big jump, the risk-reward ratio has swung decidedly against the biotech.

The development today was the release of the FDA documents (which I have not read) which seem to indicate that the FDA sees Krystexxa ... as an effective treatment for gout. The documents reiterated some previously described cardiovascular safety concerns. The share price subsequently shot up by 50%. ... Savient's share price soared last year after positive phase III efficacy data, only to crash resoundingly many months later after the ...  release of data indicating a significantly increased risk. ... While one might get lucky and clear both [the review panel and the FDA's approval], historical odds suggest a more conservative FDA approach. ... The 50% jump today swings the risk/reward ratio negative.

Should he prove wrong, however, we promise not to hold it against him if he chooses to renege on his promise to name his first-born daughter Krystexxa.

Shake, rattle, and roll
With these stocks shaking the market over the past month, it pays to start your own research on them at Motley Fool CAPS. Read a company's financial reports, scrutinize key data and charts, and examine the comments your fellow investors have made -- all from a stock's CAPS page.

Fool contributor Rich Duprey has no financial position in any of the stocks mentioned in this article. You can see his holdings. Elan is a Motley Fool Rule Breakers recommendation. Biogen Idec is a former recommendation of Stock Advisor. You can shake, rattle, and roll The Motley Fool's disclosure policy, but it still won't break.