Be warned: I'm about to ask you a highly personal and potentially uncomfortable question.

But don't worry. In return, I'll give you the details on one stock our top analysts think could be your next big winner -- with no strings attached. All you have to do is keep reading.

Now, for the moment of truth ...
How many stocks in your portfolio are up 400% or more? One? Two? Five?

If you own any, congratulations – and feel free to sound off in the comment section below. But if the answer is zero, don't sweat it. You're certainly not alone (I'm still a few hundred percent short of my first five-bagger) – and more importantly, it doesn't mean you're a bad investor.

After all, unless you had the (insert your own noun) to buy left-for-dead companies like Ford (NYSE: F) or Sirius XM Radio (Nasdaq: SIRI) this time last year, or you've been (insert your own adjective) enough to hold game-changing companies like (Nasdaq: AMZN) over the past decade, chances are you simply haven't had the opportunity to own any really huge winners.

The odds are stacked against you
With the exception of companies like those listed above, the market's biggest winners tend to be companies most investors have never even heard of. If you don't believe me, just have a look at 10 of the top winners of the past 52 weeks ...


52-Week Gain

Market Cap

Wall Street Analysts Covering

Diedrich Coffee


$200 million


Orient Paper


$143 million


Select Comfort


$446 million


Dollar Thrifty Automotive


$717 million


Pier 1 Imports


$843 million


ValueVision Media


$130 million


Avis Budget Group


$1.2 billion


Valassis Communications


$1.5 billion


Dana Holding


$1.6 billion




$89 million


Sources: Google Finance and Yahoo! Finance. All data as of March 12, 2010.

And this is no isolated incident or statistical anomaly. In fact, it holds true time and time and time again.

That's why I call these small, obscure, and overlooked stocks your shot to score big, and why fellow Fool writer Rich Greifner says they're the stocks Warren Buffett wishes he could buy.

Of course, there's one big problem ...
These stocks are small ... obscure ... and overlooked -- meaning you'll have do some serious digging to find ones worthy of your hard-earned investment dollars.

And that's exactly why Motley Fool co-founder Tom Gardner launched our Motley Fool Hidden Gems service back in 2003. You see, while all the Wall Street analysts and talking heads on CNBC are busy covering behemoths such as:


52-Week Gain

Market Cap

Wall Street Analysts Covering



$182 billion


Microsoft (Nasdaq: MSFT)


$257 billion


ExxonMobil (NYSE: XOM)


$315 billion


Bank of America (NYSE: BAC)


$169 billion




$151 billion


Sources: Google Finance and Yahoo! Finance. All data as of March 12, 2010.

... our Hidden Gems team is busy using $250,000 of the Fool's own money to buy expertly managed, cash-generating small caps like the one I'm going to introduce you to now.

This could be your next big winner
As anyone who experienced the great Northeastern blackout of 2003 (which left 45 million people in the dark and cost the U.S. more than $10 billion) knows, our nation's electrical grid is in sad shape -- and getting worse all the time.

In fact, the U.S. Department of Energy estimates that failings in the grid cost our economy as much as $180 billion per year. And although President Obama has already pledged $3.4 billion toward the problem (with private investors agreeing to match that amount), experts estimate that it could cost as much as $1.5 trillion to get it up to speed.

(Getting rich) off the grid
Granted, you've probably never heard of AZZ. It primarily designs and manufactures specialized parts and equipment for utilities and industrial companies -- things like bus ducts, power distribution enclosures, relay panels, switch gear, and substation services.

You can bet this division will thrive as the U.S. government begins investing billions -- possibly even trillions -- into rebuilding our power grid. Yet, thanks to the recent downturn in infrastructure spending, AZZ is selling well below what our analysts consider fair value.

Couple that with AZZ's healthy balance sheet (lots of cash, with $100 million in senior notes not payable until 2018) and solid 2.9% dividend, and you'll begin to see why our Hidden Gems team recently opened a small position and has named AZZ a "buy first" stock.

Now it's your turn
Of course, it would be a major mistake to invest based solely on what I've been able to tell you here. That's why I'd like to offer you a free 30-day all-access pass to our Hidden Gems service.

That way you can get in-depth research on AZZ, plus full coverage of every stock in the Hidden Gems real-money portfolio -- including all of their "buy first" small-cap stock picks -- and access to all the other valuable features of the members-only website. Stick with Hidden Gems if you like it -- pay nothing if you don't. To learn more, simply click here.

Austin Edwards owns shares of AT&T -- and (insert your own adjective) people tend to say he's a real (insert your own noun). AZZ is a Hidden Gems recommendation, as well as a Fool holding. Ford and are Stock Advisor selections. Microsoft is an Inside Value pick. Motley Fool Options has recommended a diagonal call on Microsoft. The Motley Fool is investors writing for investors.