Over the last few weeks, stocks have plummeted, regrouped, plummeted again, regrouped ... I think you get the picture. To say there's been upheaval in the market is hitting the nail on the head. Some companies have seen stock prices fall for valid reasons, but others have seen stock prices fall just because fear is running rampant. This is great news for investors looking for terrific companies on sale.

3 stocks being unfairly punished
United Technologies
(NYSE: UTX), a cyclical manufacturing and aerospace industries company, has seen pretty steady declines since the beginning of July as investors worry that a slowdown in consumer spending and continuing cuts to defense will dampen United Technologies' profits.

However, according to United Technologies' recent quarterly report, net income went from $1.11 billion this same time last year to $1,318 for 2011-06. Additionally, basic EPS rose from $1.22 this same time last year to $1.48, and United Technologies pays a dividend yield of 2.6% with a healthy payout ratio of 34%.

Moreover, United Technologies is a Fortune 500 company and has a market cap of over $68 billion, giving it the size and strength requisite for safe, long-term investments.

General Electric (NYSE: GE) a multifaceted company with operations in technology, service, and finance, is another company that saw pretty steady declines since the beginning of July. However, it recently released its quarterly results, and to say it did well is an understatement. Profits were up 21% to $0.35 per share, infrastructure orders were up 24%, and with contracts from Boeing (NYSE: BA) and Airbus for GE's LEAP-X jet engine, backlog came in at a whopping $189 billion.

Like United Technologies, GE is a Fortune 500 company, and it has a market cap of over $175 billion. Plus, with a dividend yield of 3.4% at a payout ratio of 43%, GE makes the grade for a healthy dividend-paying company with a seemingly bright future.

Last but certainly not least on the list of stocks being unfairly punished by the market is exploration and crude oil production company ExxonMobil (NYSE: XOM). According to its recent quarterly results, net income rose from $7.56 billion this same time last year to over $10.68 billion -- that's no small increase.

Additionally, basic EPS rose from $1.61 this same time last year to $2.19. Add to that a dividend yield of 2.5% with the low payout ratio of 24%, a market cap of over $350 billion, and the fact that ExxonMobil is a Fortune 500 company, and you're looking at a pretty solid company for long-term investment.

Blue-light specials
Yes, the market has taken a pretty heavy beating over the last few days, and that has many investors worried about their portfolios. However, it also means that there are some pretty great companies on sale. I don't know about you, but great companies on sale is something I can appreciate.

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This article represents the opinion of the writer, who may disagree with the “official” recommendation position of a Motley Fool premium advisory service. We’re motley! Questioning an investing thesis -- even one of our own -- helps us all think critically about investing and make decisions that help us become smarter, happier, and richer.