Every week, I take a look at a few companies that lapped their profit targets. Leaving Wall Street's pros with quizzical looks on their faces can be a good thing. It usually means that the companies have more in the tank than analysts figured, and capital appreciation often follows.

Let's take a look at a few companies that humbled the prognosticators this past week.

We can start with Amazon.com (NASDAQ:AMZN). Shares of the leading online retailer went Bezos-batty after the company posted earnings of $0.19 a share in its second quarter. The bottom line more than tripled, coasting past what seemed to be great Wall Street expectations of $0.16 per share for the period.

That's pretty impressive. And to think that the 2.2 million copies of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows won't be booked until the third quarter. The company did claim that attached sales -- items that consumers attached to their pre-orders of the book that shipped during the second quarter -- made up an inconsequential 1% of the sales growth. 

E*Trade (NASDAQ:ETFC) is another topper. The discount broker clocked in with earnings of $0.42 a share, $0.02 ahead of where analysts were parked with their second-quarter projections. The niche is apparently doing pretty well, with TD AMERITRADE (NASDAQ:AMTD) also beating the Street a week earlier.

Then we have Baidu.com (NASDAQ:BIDU). China's most popular website -- commanding nearly two-thirds of the country's search queries -- earned $0.54 a share in its latest quarter. Silly pros, they were only looking for the company to turn a profit of $0.43 a share. I guess after Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) came up short, most investors were braced for the worst with Baidu. What do you call it if you are disappointed in not being disappointed? Oh, I know, short and poorer.

So, keep watching the companies that lap expectations. Over time, it will be a rewarding experience for investors as the market rewards the overachievers. That's the kind of surprise we look for in the Rule Breakers newsletter service. Want in? Check out a 30-day trial subscription.

Either way, come back next Monday to learn about more stocks that blew the market away.

Amazon.com is a Motley Fool Stock Advisor newsletter selection. Baidu.com is a Rule Breakers recommendation. Either newsletter can be yours for the next 30 days with a free trial subscription offer.

Longtime Fool contributor Rick Munarriz is a fan of toppers. He does not own shares in any of the companies in this story. He is also part of the Rule Breakers newsletter research team, seeking out tomorrow's ultimate growth stocks a day early. The Fool has a disclosure policy.