"Don't catch a falling knife," as the old saw commands. (Pardon my mixing a cutlery metaphor.) The idea of buying a former superstar stock at a discount price certainly has its attractions, but you've got to make sure you catch the haft -- not the blade. That's where Motley Fool CAPS comes in.

Today, we once again stand beneath Mr. Market's silverware drawer, measuring which knives have fallen the farthest. Then we'll call on CAPS to ask which of these stocks -- if any -- Foolish investors believe are ready for a rebound. Let's meet today's list of contenders, drawn from the latest "52-Week Lows" list at WSJ.com:


52-Week High

Recent Price

CAPS Rating
(out of 5 stars)

Standard Parking  (NASDAQ:STAN)




American Public Education (NASDAQ:APEI)




Progenics Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:PGNX)




Companies are selected from the "New Highs & Lows" lists published on WSJ.com on Thursday and Friday last week. 52-week high and recent price provided by Yahoo! Finance. CAPS ratings from Motley Fool CAPS.

All good things must come to an end
Ah, well. I suppose it was too good to last. For the time being, at least, the market's perpetual sell-off seems to be busy making plans for summer vacation. With the market in rebound mode, we're fast running out of screaming bargains.

Now that the screaming has stopped, CAPS members are being forced to listen carefully for more "whispered bargains" -- and they're few and far between. Only a small handful of stocks scraped 52-week lows this week, but the good news is that Fools think at least one of them has "bounce" potential. Check your review mirror, execute a parallel park, and remember to turn your wheels toward the curb. We're pulling off the highway today, and taking a few minutes to examine ...

The bull case for Standard Parking
CAPS All-Star RonChapmanJr thinks Standard is a "Great stock," and noted in February: "I hate paying for parking (who doesn't) but you almost always have to anyways. That is why this stock will outperform."

Ron's not the only investor bullish on Standard -- or the first. As far back as last spring, cocaps2win was arguing:

Hospitals and other businesses expanding and building, on any and all open land they can find... The prices of parking costing anywhere from $5.00 or more for a couple of hours to approximately $10.00 or more per day for each and every parking space! Definitely a buy.

And wildtim67 agreed, writing in spring '08: 

With the ever expanding construction in this country, this company will only continue to expand. If there is an open tract of land somewhere, chances are some company is going to build on it. If it is a Hospital, Airport, or any other service related building with a parking lot, there is a good chance that this company is going to manage it.

And not just hospitals and airports. Standard also handles parking services for major corporations such as Brookfield Properties and various properties owned by Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS), MetLife (NYSE:MET), and JPMorgan Chase (NYSE:JPM).

Perhaps the best reason to buy Standard Parking, though, is that … well, it's about the only parking company left. Central Parking got taken out by Kohlberg & Company and other private-equity raiders two years ago in a Blackstone (NYSE:BX) orchestrated buyout. Fool fave Imperial Parking didn't last even that long, sold off the auction block in 2004. With the exception of more diversified operator ABM Industries, Standard is about the only (public) game in town.

And what a game it is! With more than $19 million in free cash flow generated over the last 12 months, Standard is even more profitable on a cash basis than it appears under GAAP. True, cash generation has been slipping of late -- but that's only to be expected as the nation creeps ever closer to 10% unemployment. No jobs means no commutes, means no parking at the end of the commutes, means fewer revenues for Standard. Q.E.D.

But hey, folks, the recession won't last forever. With Standard now selling for 14 times earnings, and analysts predicting 11.5% long-term growth once the economy does turn the corner, Standard looks to offer a pretty compelling buy thesis to value investors. Plus, the toll-booth nature of the business helps ensure sustainable cash flow.

Time to chime in
Of course, that's just my opinion. Bearish investors might point out that while Standard generates plenty of cash, it needs to -- to pay down its heavy debt burden. Which way do you come down on the question? Whatever your views, here's the chance to express them. Go to Motley Fool CAPS now, and sound off.

Fool contributor Rich Smith does not own shares of any company named above. You can find him on CAPS, publicly pontificating under the handle TMFDitty, where he's currently ranked No. 526 out of more than 130,000 members. The Fool has a disclosure policy.