I love bargain stocks, especially when they're hitting 52-week lows. Still, it can be instructive to also look at stocks that are riding high.

For one thing, they can make good sell candidates. More optimistically, we may be able to find a few companies that can continue their upward climbs.

In this series, I'll be searching industry by industry for stocks reaching 52-week highs. That way, we'll be able to make a few quick comparisons among semi-related companies.

There are 24 industry groups as defined by the Global Industry Classification Standard (GICS). Transportation is one of them.

Below are the top six companies in this space, by market cap, that are within spitting distance of their 52-week highs.


Recent Price

52-Week Low

52-Week High

P/E Ratio (Trailing)






Union Pacific (NYSE: UNP)





Canadian National Railway (NYSE: CNI)















Norfolk Southern (NYSE: NSC)





Sources: Capital IQ, a division of Standard & Poor's; and Yahoo! Finance.

We have archrivals UPS and FedEx and four railroads represented on this list.

Which is better? UPS or FedEx? David Gardner makes the case for FedEx; Joe Magyer makes the case for UPS.

As for the railroads, Canadian National Railway looks the cheapest on a P/E-ratio basis, but Norfolk Southern looks the cheapest on a price-to-tangible-book-ratio basis. Christopher Barker follows the space and notes some interesting points in his breakdown of CSX's recent earnings. He also reveals the most efficient railroad.

If you're interested in reading more about any of these stocks, add them to My Watchlist to find all of our Foolish analysis on them.

Anand Chokkavelu doesn't own shares of any companies mentioned. He posts his favorite articles on his Twitter feed.

Canadian National Railway and FedEx are Motley Fool Stock Advisor selections. UPS is a Motley Fool Income Investor selection. The Fool owns shares of FedEx and UPS. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools don't all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.