Penny stocks are one way to double your money, though it's fraught with risk, but there are equally shiny opportunities trading at the other end of the price spectrum, too. I call 'em "three-digit stocks," yet if they're owned by Warren Buffett, they can trade in the four-, five-, and six-digit range, too.

penny stock might not be a good buy simply because it's cheap, and a three-digit stock shouldn't scare you away just because it carries a hefty price tag. Handsome is as handsome does. Let's check in with the Motley Fool CAPS community to see which of the high-priced stocks below earn the greatest confidence from our investor-intelligence database:


CAPS Rating (out of 5)

3-Digit Price

Return on Capital, TTM

Apple (Nasdaq: AAPL)




China Petroleum & Chemical (NYSE: SNP)




Netflix (Nasdaq: NFLX)




Source: Capital IQ, a division of Standard & Poor's; Motley Fool CAPS.

But just because these stocks are purring is no reason to jump into them blindly. Catching a tiger by the tail -- or a knife falling from on high -- can end up leaving you scratched and bleeding. That's why we recommend you use this list as a launch pad for your own research and analysis.

Highfalutin' honeys
Someone's always coming out with the next Apple killer. The flood of tablet computers to wash up on retailer shelves in coming months, whether it's Motorola Mobility's (NYSE: MMI) Xoom or the TouchPad from Hewlett-Packard (NYSE: HPQ), there's hope it will catch the imagination of the public like the iPad did. It was the same with the iPhone, the iPod, and the iMac. Somehow, Apple's managed to survive.

Yet is there a new wrinkle in Steve Jobs' health, which has been a long-standing concern, that could make Apple's stock dead money? CAPS member BlazerMania thinks that's just one of the issues that may hold it back, saying, "Too much uncertainty with Android and Jobs' health for the stock to move much over the next couple quarters."

Conversely, modeltim essentially says the company is more than just one person, and right now it remains a potent force:

Firing on all cylinders. Things are in place for several years of superior growth, Jobs or not. A low P/E with lots of cash and no debt and a superior, profit line across the board.

What's your view? Does the stock follow Jobs, or will the company's history of innovation carry it forward no matter what? Let us know on the Apple CAPS page if you agree thatApple's competitive moat is one of the strongest in consumer electronics.

Northwest passage
Canada is rich in oil sands assets, and they become even more attractive as oil prices rise. The Alberta Department of Energy estimates that Canadian oil sands have 175 billion barrels of recoverable oil reserves, which is second only to the more than 260 billion barrels of oil reserves in Saudi Arabia. When crude prices began their march higher, there was a black gold rush north of the border.

China was in the forefront of prospectors wanting to get in, much as it has been in Africa and Latin America. China Petroleum & Chemical, also known as Sinopec, recently bought Occidental Petroleum's (NYSE: OXY) Argentina assets, and last year bought some deepwater assets in Angola. Now it's in talks with Canadian National Railway (NYSE: CNI) to export oil from Saskatchewan and Alberta. There doesn't seem to be enough oil anywhere to quench China's thirst for it.

With its voracious appetite, CAPS member SMCAPGREG was calling Sinopec undervalued at the end of last year:

Price now at 95$, est for 2011@ 14.25, 2012 est@17.68 this stock is so cheap china economy growing at approx 10% need for oil natural gas all a plus for this company. Stock is a bargin at this price.

You can add Sinopec to the Fool's free portfolio tracker, and then dig up some nuggets of good opinion on the China Petroleum & Chemical CAPS page.

Triple-digit titans
Considering its shares have nearly quadrupled over the past year, you could say Netflix has the ability to confound the experts and up-end the best-laid analyses of Wall Street. It's gotten so that even Whitney Tilson, a pretty sharp hedge fund operator and noted Netflix short seller, has thrown in the towel and closed out his short position.

"We have closed out our position because we are no longer confident that our investment thesis is correct," Tilson recently wrote.

CAPS member MattCohn isn't so sure now's the time to be giving up. Considering the array of services lining up against it, the headwinds many have anticipated may finally be realized:

Subscriber growth will continue, but content cost will grow a lot faster. Competition will also emerge from some very big players like Apple, Amazon, Google, Cable and Satellite. I am not sure when the fundamentals will kick it, but it is going to get real ugly. I also think it is finally time to short this good but overvalued company.

Yet there's no arguing it has momentum at its back right now, so let us know on the Netflix CAPS page whether it can continue its climb higher.

Count to 10
These three-digit stocks might be on their way to even higher valuations. That's why it pays to start your own research in Motley Fool CAPS. Read a company's financial reports, scrutinize key data and charts, and examine the comments your fellow investors have made, all from a stock's CAPS page.

Apple,, Canadian National Railway, and Netflix are Motley Fool Stock Advisor picks. Google is a Motley Fool Inside Value pick and a Motley Fool Rule Breakers selection. The Fool has written puts on Apple. The Fool owns shares of Google and Apple. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. 

Fool contributor Rich Duprey owns shares of Motorola Mobility but does not have a financial position in any of the other stocks mentioned in this article. You can see his holdings here. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.