There's a school of thinking that sees more promise in superior gains than in digging up great starting prices, even if you seem to be overpaying for that bottle rocket. Richard Driehaus, the godfather of momentum investing, takes exception to buying low and selling high: "I believe that far more money is made buying high and selling at even higher prices." And our Rule Breakers analysts would agree with that: momentum-like criteria show up twice in the six pillars of that newsletter's strategy.

Price momentum may not be a traditional marker of a strong business or a capable management team, but when you think about it, those qualities should eventually generate strong returns. This is just a slightly backwards way of looking at the numbers, throwing "cause" and "effect" into the same basket to find a starting point for more research.

So what kind of bottle rockets can we find today? I took that question to our CAPS screener, looking for stocks that have at least doubled from 52-week lows and are still within 10% of yearly highs.

One stock that caught my eye among the resulting 127 tickers today is processor technology researcher ARM Holdings (Nasdaq: ARMH). If you bought shares a year ago, you're sitting on a massive 167% gain today. It's been nothing but blue skies ahead since the fall of 2008 and the stock looks set to explore new highs -- again and again.

Here's how ARM's gains stack up against some direct rivals over the last year:


% Above 52-Week Low

% Below 52-Week High

ARM Holdings



MIPS Technologies (Nasdaq: MIPS)



Intel (Nasdaq: INTC)



Advanced Micro Devices (NYSE: AMD)



Source: Motley Fool CAPS.

Past performance is no guarantee of future results, and you should always do more research after finding a promising stock by screening. In this case, ARM runs a unique and highly profitable business model and finds itself at the epicenter of mobile innovation these days.

ARM doesn't make and sell processors of its own, but burns the midnight oil making improvements to the famously low-power, high-efficiency ARM technology platform. Licensees range from narrow-market specialists like NVIDIA (Nasdaq: NVDA) to generalists in the QUALCOMM (Nasdaq: QCOM) and Samsung mold. Between all these licensees, ARM has a stranglehold on the market for smartphones and many other mobile devices.

It's no surprise to see a leader in a red-hot industry take off like a rocket. Moreover, it would take a small miracle or a major disaster to unseat ARM from this very comfortable position.

Buy now or forever hold your peace: This bottle rocket still has plenty of dry powder left in its growth engines.

Fool contributor Anders Bylund holds no position in any of the companies discussed here. Intel is a Motley Fool Inside Value recommendation. NVIDIA is a Motley Fool Stock Advisor pick. The Fool owns shares of and has written puts on Intel. Motley Fool Options has recommended buying calls on Intel. The Fool owns shares of QUALCOMM. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. You can check out Anders' holdings and a concise bio if you like, and The Motley Fool is investors writing for investors.