Scouring the weekly list of stocks hitting fresh 52-week lows is getting easier and easier. There may have been 743 stocks hitting new highs on the New York Stock Exchange -- and 459 Nasdaq winners -- but we're down to just six stocks hitting rock bottom on the NYSE (and 38 Nasdaq-listed companies hitting new 52-week lows).

I was fishing on the ceiling last week, singling out five stocks hitting new trailing-year highs that were headed for a fall and five moving higher.

Given the slim pickings on the list of stinkers, I will limit myself this week to bringing up three of the 38 Nasdaq stocks that I believe have bottomed out. Obviously a company has to be doing a lot of things wrong to sink to new depths during the past year of generally bullish sentiment, but the pessimism is already baked into these stocks.


Price on March 5



Palm (Nasdaq: PALM)




Shanda Games (Nasdaq: GAME)




VisionChina Media (Nasdaq: VISN)




Source: Yahoo! Finance.

Let's go over the three losers that may be winners.

I've been critical of Palm since it began trading in the double digits last spring, and rightfully so. I didn't think that the smartphone pioneer should have been trading so high given the crowded marketplace that it was attempting to dive back into, but it's hard to ignore Palm now that it's trading for less than half of my diss price.

There's nothing wrong with the Pre or Pixi, and Palm's enviable webOS platform is certainly cool. Sadly, Palm arrived too late to its own revival party. Everyone else appears to be fighting for the scraps that BlackBerry and iPhone leave behind.

Why isn't Palm simply on its way to zero, then? Well, thankfully for Palm, there are some pretty big fish in computing and software that are faring far worse, making the stock a compelling acquisition target for Microsoft (Nasdaq: MSFT) or Dell (Nasdaq: DELL). The rub is that we're in a reverse auction right now. Palm will keep inching lower until someone steps in with a modest premium. This may actually trigger an interesting bidding war. The end result is that Palm never should have been trading in the teens, but if it's bought out that will likely come at a slightly higher price than the shares are fetching today.

Shanda Games
Chinese gaming giant Shanda Games has been a huge disappointment since going public last year. It certainly didn't help its case last week when it warned that net revenue would suffer a double-digit sequential decline during the current quarter.

However, Shanda Games is ridiculously profitable with chunky margins to boot. Analysts took a weed-whacker to Shanda Games' profit targets after last week's letdown. They see the company earning just $0.77 a share this year -- and $0.86 a share in 2011. I'm wary when guesstimates start to inch lower, but this is a tempting value at just nine times this year's projected profitability and only eight times next year's mark.

When it comes to advertising in China, VisionChina has an impressive fleet of 89,299 monitors, spewing ads and content on buses, subways, and subway train platforms. There have been signs of life from some marketing mavens in China, but not this one.

VisionChina's revenue climbed a mere 3% in its latest quarter, decelerating from its pace earlier in the year. Earnings fell by 22%. The company's guidance for the current quarter suggests a top-line decline. VisionChina calls the weakness near-term in nature, but analysts now think the company will be lucky to break even this year.

Are there better places to be? Sure. Focus Media (Nasdaq: FMCN) is expected to be profitable this year, and its business of beaming sponsored spots on digital poster frames and supermarket monitors isn't far removed from VisionChina's realm. SINA (Nasdaq: SINA) remains a moneymaking giant in online brand advertising. 

VisionChina commands a balance sheet with a healthy net-cash balance, and one would expect its near-term challenges to be overcome if the Chinese economy remains on track. There are 89,299 reasons to give VisionChina a chance -- and some of them go by pretty fast.

SINA is a Motley Fool Stock Advisor recommendation. Motley Fool Options has recommended a diagonal call position on Microsoft, which is a Motley Fool Inside Value selection. Try any of our Foolish newsletters today, free for 30 days.

Longtime Fool contributor Rick Munarriz realizes that you don't know you've hit your peak until you're going downhill. He does not own shares in any of the stocks in this story. He is also part of the Rule Breakers newsletter research team, seeking out tomorrow's ultimate growth stocks a day early. The Fool has a disclosure policy.