Market Vectors Brazil Small Cap ETF (NYSE: BRF) is an enticing play that looks to capitalize on Brazil's rapidly improving economy. The small caps included in the ETF offer room to grow in a country whose economy is gaining steam. But is the market giving those companies too much credit, placing the ETF's share price beyond its true value?

Flowserve (NYSE: FLS) is an efficient and innovative manufacturer of flow control equipment with a solid present and an appealing future. But especially while the BP oil spill was in full gush, there was well-founded fear that business would slow for all oil-related companies at the same time we'd see an increase in regulation.

With the economy in the dumps, Wynn Resorts (Nasdaq: WYNN), a big-time player in casino resorts, seemed like a reasonable shorting opportunity. But how would the market value the industry once the economy started to rebound?

Most curiously, what do these stocks have in common?

Keeping watch
The answer to that last one is that they all spent time on the watchlist of Motley Fool Pro and Motley Fool Options advisor Jeff Fischer as he tried to figure out the answers to those critical questions. Wynn Resorts was recently expunged after loitering as a potential short for way too long.

"I figured that because of the economy, people would be gambling less, the company had a lot of debt, and it was opening its latest multi-billion-dollar resort in what seemed like a really bad time," said Jeff, whose total returns have outpaced the S&P 500's gain since the service began. "By having it on My Watchlist, I came to realize that I just don't understand the industry and, even more, I can't come to grips with how Wall Street values the industry. I put it on the list as a possible short when it was around $50, and now it's over $80, so using My Watchlist saved me."

My Watchlist, by the way, is a new free tool from the Fool that allows you to track the performance and content about the stocks and ETFs that matter to you.

Jeff still has the other two investments under consideration. He loves the idea of the Brazilian ETF, but he's finding he's a bit risk-averse when it comes to pulling the trigger. "I've found that I default to putting riskier things on My Watchlist but rarely get around to buying them. It turns out there were stretches when My Watchlist was performing better than anything I owed. That was awesome. So having My Watchlist is forcing me to rethink my strategy and my risk tolerance."

Jeff owned Flowserve in Pro but dumped it near fair value during the BP disaster amid fears of doom for all players in the industry. Keeping it on his watchlist has allowed him to track a company he already knows and likes in case the market gives him another purchase opportunity.

That's what happened with chip giant Intel (Nasdaq: INTC), the fourth stock worth adding to My Watchlist. Jeff allowed the shares he owned to be called away through covered call options, but kept an eye on the company via his watchlist. Several months later, he and his team bought back shares directly when the company's outlook had improved.

"That's a good thing to remember about watchlists: you might wait a couple years for an opportunity," he said. "And when that opportunity comes along, and you grab it, it's a great feeling."

Don't throw everything on your watchlist, though. "You should initially vet these stocks almost the same way you would anything you'd buy," said Jeff. "You should have a strong enough interest that you could see yourself taking a position. That's the only way you can keep your watchlist manageable and truly relevant to you. If you get over 20 or so stocks, it overwhelms you."

You can help yourself make smarter investing decisions with your own version My Watchlist, new and free from the Fool. Click here to start building yours or click anywhere on Fool.com you see the Watch button.

True to its name, The Motley Fool is made up of a motley assortment of writers and analysts, each with a unique perspective; sometimes we agree, sometimes we disagree, but we all believe in the power of learning from each other through our Foolish community.

Roger Friedman doesn't own shares of any companies mentioned. Motley Fool Options has recommended buying calls on Intel, which is a Motley Fool Inside Value choice. The Fool owns shares of Intel. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.