Where have all the bears gone?

The Dow has now closed higher in each of the past six weeks, and investors are generally feeling comfortable buying stocks these days. Given the measly money market yields, unsure commodity markets, and iffy bond rates, the equity markets don't look too shabby.

Thankfully, most companies are earning their keep. Yesterday, I went over seven stocks expected to post higher quarterly results this week. I was really only scratching the surface. Far more than seven companies are pegged to post year-over-year gains on the bottom line. Let's go over a few more:

Company

Latest Quarter EPS (Estimated)

Year-Ago Quarter EPS

CSX (NYSE: CSX)

$0.69

$0.62

Infosys (Nasdaq: INFY)

$0.57

$0.56

Linear Technology (Nasdaq: LLTC)

$0.39

$0.25

AptarGroup (NYSE: ATR)

$0.51

$0.38

Gannett (NYSE: GCI)

$0.41

$0.25

Genuine Parts (NYSE: GPC)

$0.61

$0.56

Mattel (NYSE: MAT)

($0.03)

($0.14)

Source: Yahoo! Finance.

These are companies in vastly different industries. From railroads to Barbie dolls, auto parts to dispensers, a healthy cross-section of sectors are serving up winners these days.

Gannett, the company behind USA TODAY, is a surprising find. Aren't newspaper companies supposed to be a dying breed? Check again. Trading for little as $1.85 a share 13 months ago, Gannett's stock is nearly a 10-bagger today. Shares have regained highs last seen nearly two years ago, even though the company has since slashed its dividend by 90%.

Cash preservation suits Gannett just fine these days, though. Cutting costs also hasn't hurt, and digital delivery is becoming a reality, thanks to the popularity of the Kindle and now the iPad. Analysts see bottom-line improvement at the company for the first time since the fourth quarter of 2006.

The rest of the stocks make more sense. CSX is a rail giant. Warren Buffett's entry to the industry late last year by buying Burlington Northern should have tipped us off on the sector's appeal. Infosys is a Bangalore-based tech outsourcing specialist, and companies in cost-cutting mode are turning to cheaper support abroad.

Linear makes integrated circuits at a time when chip companies are booming. AptarGroup specializes in pumps, plastic caps, and aerosol valves used in various dispenser products. Genuine Parts makes auto parts, and car sales have been booming since last year's "cash for clunkers" campaign. Investors knew that things were going well for Genuine Parts when it hiked its dividend two months ago. Mattel's playthings are everywhere, and it isn't a surprise to see parents treat their children to new toys as early rewards in an economic turnaround.

There may be a few warts in some of these reports, but the end result should be improvement on the bottom line. If Wall Street gives us at least 14 companies projected to post year-over-year increases this week, I'll take it.

Which of these seven companies do you think will keep improving in 2010? Share your thoughts in the comments box below.

AptarGroup is a Motley Fool Inside Value pick. Linear Technology is a Motley Fool Stock Advisor recommendation. Genuine Parts is a Motley Fool Income Investor choice. Try any of our Foolish newsletters today, free for 30 days.

Longtime Fool contributor Rick Munarriz wonders whether his contrarian heart will ever be happy. He does not own shares in any of the companies 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.