Every week, I take a look at a few companies that lapped their profit targets. Leaving Wall Street's pros with quizzical expressions 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 TiVo (NASDAQ:TIVO). The digital video recorder (DVR) pioneer came through with a quarter worthy of the green "thumbs-up" button on its namesake machine's remote control.

TiVo posted a loss of $0.08 a share during the third quarter, a narrower deficit than both the $0.12 a share it lost a year ago and the $0.13-per-share loss that Wall Street was expecting.

Shanda (NASDAQ:SNDA) is another topper. The Chinese online video-game specialist earned $0.44 a share in its latest quarter, just ahead of the $0.43 per American depositary share (ADS) that the analysts had been banking on.

The company that made its mark in China with popular multiplayer fantasy games stumbled last year, but it's back on track now. The Motley Fool Rule Breakers pick has generated market-thumping results in each of the past four quarters. The market may be tempted by the recent IPOs of Giant Interactive (NYSE:GA) and Perfect World (NASDAQ:PWRD) -- rival online leisure providers in China -- but it's Shanda that's holding a hot hand at the moment.

Finally, we have Staples (NASDAQ:SPLS) showing the office supply universe who's boss. The retailer earned $0.42 per diluted share on an adjusted basis that backs out a one-time expense for a class action settlement. Investors were ready to settle for a showing of $0.40 a share.

It wasn't a great quarter for Staples. Comps clocked in lower. Price-slashing rivals Office Depot (NYSE:ODP) and Office Max (NYSE:OMX) disrupted the marketplace. Still, it was strength in its office supply stronghold that saved the day for Staples.

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 free trial subscription.

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

Shanda is a Rule Breakers pick, while Staples has been highlighted in Stock Advisor.

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