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 anything like Berkshire Hathaway 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

lululemon athletica (Nasdaq: LULU)




NACCO Industries (NYSE: NC)




Pharmasset (Nasdaq: VRUS)




Source: CapitalIQ, 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
Sneaker maker Skechers (NYSE: SKX) enjoyed a brief ride higher on the toning shoe fad it created, but the reality that it was a fad has set in and the stock trades more than 50% below its 52-week highs. What's harder to imagine is that yoga is not simply a similar fad and selling clothes inspired by it, as lululemon athletica does, won't suffer a similar fate as the toning shoe.

Yet over the past year the shares have jumped more than 134% and over the past two years the stock is more than 600% higher! Give me a fad like that any day. It's performed far better than many other retail apparel stocks, with G-III Apparel, up a nice 400% itself, or Nike up only 60% in the last two years.

But at 40 times next year's earnings, which are expected to grow 25%, lululemon atheltica seems a tad pricey, fad or not. While CAPS member Coyotemark thinks the stock has gone too far, too fast, because it's a lifestyle choice, BerryBerry100 believes it has further still to go.

Tell us your opinion on the lululemon athletica CAPS page whether it's a stretch this is still a viable investment.

Sunday drivers
Although two-thirds of Nacco Industries business comes from heavy equipment sales, putting it on par with Caterpillar and Deere, but kitchen gadgets still generate 30% of total revenues. Coal mining operations round out sales, giving investors quite a collection of businesses!

Rising commodities prices are going to eat into profits in equipment sales, the company says, but it expects to be able to push through additional price hikes of its own to ameliorate the impact of raw material costs. And the consumer business seems to have recovered from the worst of the recession -- revenues in its Hamilton Beach division were off slightly in the fourth quarter, though they were almost 4% higher for the year. Nacco sees the single-cup coffee serving popularized by Green Mountain Coffee Roasters (Nasdaq: GMCR) as a trend it wants to tap into, and it will be introducing its own single-serving machine to garner some of the flavor.

Only Nacco's coal business looks like it will be in for slow times as its contract at its San Miguel mine runs out and royalties come in lower than they did last year.

The CAPS community, though, remains upbeat about the longer-term prospects for diversified company, with only one of the several dozen All-Star members rating it thinking it won't outperform the broad market averages.

You can add Nacco Industries to the Fool's free portfolio tracker to see if it can keep its business from running off the road.

Triple-digit titans
Clinical stage pharmaceutical Pharmasset focuses on developing novel drugs to treat viral infections, particularly oral therapies for the Hepatitis C virus. So far it's seen encouraging developments in its clinical data and is looking forward to beginning trials with larger partners like Roche and Bristol-Myers Squibb (NYSE: BMY).

If it's successful, Pharmasset will end up having to compete against both Merck (NYSE: MRK) and Vertex Pharmaceuticals, which have Hep C drugs seeking approval from the FDA later this year. Even though it's a tough position to be in, stubisch thinks Pharmasset's claims of better performance can be justified: "If their claim to stack better than competitors in the Hep arena, look for big jumps ... enough applications in the pipe will keep these above the S&P"

If you don't want to gamble real-life money on the biotech right away, add Pharmasset to your watchlist and inoculate yourself against failure by adding your thoughts to the Pharmasset CAPS page.

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.