Everyone loves a bargain. Be it at the grocery store, the local flea market, or at the neighborhood car dealership, people inherently understand the benefits of getting a great deal.

Yet, despite this infatuation with bargains, it doesn't occur to many investors that buying cheap stocks is possibly the best way to squeeze a whole lot of bang out of a hard-earned buck. As Warren Buffett says, "Whether we're talking about socks or stocks, I like buying quality merchandise when it is marked down."

Our penny-pinching process
So, with the help of our community over at Motley Fool CAPS, I'll once again try to find some cheap stocks for all of my kindred stingy spirits.

The approach is far from complicated: We'll run a simple screen for four- or five-star stocks (out of five) with enterprise value-to-EBITDA (EV/EBITDA) ratios below 5.

Dive in
By running this screen, we'll zero in on statistical bargains that, according to our CAPS community, have plenty of great reasons to trade at much higher levels.

Let's dive right into this week's bargain bin:

Company

EV/EBITDA (Trailing 12 Months)

Industry

CAPS Rating
(Out of 5)

France Telecom (NYSE: FTE)

4.9

Integrated telecom services

*****

Murphy Oil (NYSE: MUR)

4.9

Oil and gas

*****

Brink's Co. (NYSE: BCO)

4.8

Security and alarm services

*****

Statoil (NYSE: STO)

3.0

Oil and gas

*****

InterDigital (Nasdaq: IDCC)

4.6

Communications equipment

****

AstraZeneca (NYSE: AZN)

4.4

Pharmaceuticals

****

PartnerRe (NYSE: PRE)

3.6

Reinsurance

****

Data provided by Capital IQ (a division of Standard & Poor's) and Motley Fool CAPS.

As usual, our list isn't exactly brimming with the most exhilarating businesses. But that should be just fine with us. As sharp Fools know well, boring stories often translate into the market's best risk-adjusted returns.

On the Brink's
When a historically complex company actively tries to simplify its business model, it should be no surprise that bargain hounds start sniffing around. Over the past few years, Brink's has been busy shedding some fat, and, judging by the stock's consistently high CAPS rating, our community seems quite happy with the new look.

For the uninitiated, Brink's operated in two very different segments up until October 2008 (Brink's Incorporated and Brink's Home Security), when pressure from investors prompted a tax-free spinoff of the home security segment. Throw in the sale of the natural resource operations (natural gas, timber, and gold) in late 2003 and early 2004, and you have a company that looks like it's regaining its focus.

"What is left is the core business that Brink's is famous for -- secure cash, gold and jewelry management," CAPS All-Star mrindependent said last year. "My best estimate is that Brink's can grow this core business at a pace that mirrors nominal worldwide economic growth."

To be sure, all is still not right with the global economy, and a prolonged downturn could weigh heavily on returns going forward. Diamond and jewelry demand in Europe and North America continue to be weak for Brink's, while European cash-in-transit volume and pricing also remain on the soft side.

Of course, with strong results out of Latin America helping to offset some of that weakness, the stand-alone Brink's has been rather resilient. Management even expects to grow 2010 revenue in the low-to-mid single-digit percent. And recent investments in the BRIC nations add some juicy long-term upside if a global boom ever returns.

With a leaner, meaner business model, coupled with an EV/EBITDA below 5, our community thinks Brink's is an attractive way to bet on that happening.

"Great brand, moderately low reinvestment needs, pricing power, and global breadth of services should translate into a very good company," CAPS member gbetter wrote last month. "In the long-run the stock price should reflect this."

A Fool's final word
As always, what we say here isn't meant to be taken as a formal recommendation; we want only to generate some possible ideas that you might find worth further research. If you'd like to scour the bargain bin for yourself, read what our CAPS community thinks, or even chime in with your own opinions, click here to get in the game.

Oh, and it's totally free -- an offer that even the deepest of value investors should never pass up.

Fool contributor Brian Pacampara doesn't own a position in any of the companies mentioned. France Telecom and Statoil are Motley Fool Income Investor picks. InterDigital is a selection of Stock Advisor. The Fool's disclosure policy always pays the full price for transparency.