You love buying your shirts when they go on sale. And who can resist a buy-one-get-one-free offer? So when our stocks go on sale, why do we bemoan their low prices?

Smart investors such as Warren Buffett or Marty Whitman love it when their stocks are suddenly selling at bargain-basement prices. For them, these companies become no-brainer buys.

The investors in the Motley Fool CAPS community also like a bargain, apparently. Below, you'll find three companies whose shares are selling at least 50% below their 52-week highs but still earning high honors from our investor-intelligence database. Consider it a BOGO sale on stocks.


CAPS Rating
(out of 5)

% Off 12-Month High

Hansen Medical (Nasdaq: HNSN)



Orthovita (Nasdaq: VITA)



Santarus (Nasdaq: SNTS)



Naturally, we want you to look a bit closer at these stocks before buying. You can get low-priced appliances in the dent-and-ding section of your home-remodeling superstore, but their quality might not be so good. Same thing here: Make sure there's nothing seriously wrong with the company before you plug it into your portfolio.

Take two, they're small
With hospital spending normalizing, we're going to see medical-device makers such as Intuitive Surgical (Nasdaq: ISRG) installing a broader base for their pricey surgical-assistance products. However, since analysts are looking for device makers in general to do better, investors would do well to cast their net wider to look for other innovative manufacturers,. such as Hansen Medical, which received conditional FDA approval for a clinical trial of a robotic catheter system. Volcano (Nasdaq: VOLC), a maker of a digital catheter, also got FDA approval to begin marketing its device, so it should be interesting to see which company can grab a bigger piece of the pie.

More than 500 CAPS members have weighed in on Hansen, with 95% returning a diagnosis of outperformance. Check its vitals on the Hansen Medical CAPS page and let us know whether you think it has the prescription for growth.

Holding the trump card
Also hoping for changes in medical spending habits is Orthovita, the maker of Cortoss, a polymer that's used to paste over bone fractures. Cortoss was launched last year, and there had seemed to be a slow uptake in sales, as doctors were reluctant to switch from competing bone-cement product PMMA, made by Medtronic (NYSE: MDT). Although appreciating its effectiveness, safety profile, and ease of use, doctors had been sticking with PMMA because of pricing issues. Orthovita has since changed its pricing structure and saw a 45% increase in March sales from where they were in January.

CAPS member bvdbreaker says an aging population with a propensity for bone fractures will be the catalyst for this stock's growth. "As sales continue to increase, the moat will become wider. Bone spackle, money maker as the baby boomers age and keep breaking stuff."

Para for the course
Santarus is running into competitive pressures, too. Its primary product, acid-reflux therapy Zegerid, accounted for more than two-thirds of Santarus' revenues in 2009. But now it's had the five patents related to the drug declared invalid by a court ruling that allows Par Pharmaceuticals to produce a generic version, pending FDA clearance.

In the meantime, Santarus needs to rely on the launch of an OTC version from Merck (NYSE: MRK) as it plans to appeal the court ruling. Needless to say, the outlook is a bit bleak if it's not successful.

Yet CAPS member therock050383 says that very pessimism is already priced into the stock, so there's plenty of opportunity to realize gains at this point.

At this point, everyone is assuming the worst case scenario with generic Zegerid regarding Par Pharma, and this is priced into the stock. ...The company has over $1.50/share in cash alone. ... At current prices, the rest of the company flagship without the cash is priced at $72 million. … They will have $50 million in Glumetza sales this year, Merck just launched Zegerid OTC 1 1/2 months ago (in which [Santarus] will receive royalties moving forward), plus two late stage III drugs. … (All priced at $72 million), and they will still have $100 million in Zegerid prescription sales this year … seems cheap.

Have half a mind
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