4-Star Stocks Poised to Pop: Stillwater Mining

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Based on the aggregated intelligence of 180,000-plus investors participating in Motley Fool CAPS, the Fool's free investing community, palladium miner Stillwater Mining (NYS: SWC) has earned a respected four-star ranking.

With that in mind, let's take a closer look at Stillwater's business and see what CAPS investors are saying about the stock right now.

Stillwater facts

Headquarters (Founded)Columbus, Mont. (1992)
Market Cap$1.49 billion
IndustryPrecious metals and minerals
Trailing-12-Month Revenue$680.2 million
ManagementChairman/CEO Francis McAllister (since 2001)
CFO Gregory Wing (since 2004)
Return on Equity (Average, Past 3 Years)(2%)
Cash/Debt$254.9 million / $196 million
CompetitorsNorth American Palladium (ASE: PAL)

Sources: Capital IQ (a division of Standard & Poor's) and Motley Fool CAPS.

On CAPS, 93% of the 646 members who have rated Stillwater believe the stock will outperform the S&P 500 going forward. These bulls include ibeckman and Turfscape.

Earlier this summer, ibeckman succinctly summed up the Stillwater bull case:

[M]anagement is excellent and very experienced in [copper] mining as well as [platinum group metals]. They see value in the Altar mine, and I trust their judgment. No labor troubles. Platinum/palladium prices going higher.

Over the past three years, in fact, Stillwater has grown its bottom line at a brisk rate of 141% annually. That's faster than industry peers like Freeport-McMoRan (NYS: FCX) (17%) and Rio Tinto (NYS: RIO) (13%), and Stillwater's earnings of $101.3 million over the past 12 months dwarfed North American Palladium's tiny $2 million profit.

CAPS member Turfscape elaborates on the Stillwater bull case:

You like precious metals? Don't buy the metal ... buy the miner. Stillwater Mining has a strong niche in Platinum Group metals with a healthy cash flow. They recently posted record earnings and announced that they are diversifying into copper and gold mining through an acquisition. The market reacted badly, making SWC a good value.

What do you think about Stillwater, or any other stock for that matter? If you want to retire rich, you need to put together the best portfolio you can. Owning exceptional stocks is a surefire way to secure your financial future, and on Motley Fool CAPS, thousands of investors are working every day to find them. CAPS is 100% free, so get started!

Interested in another easy way to trackStillwater?Add it to your watchlist.

At the time this article was published Fool contributor Brian Pacampara owns no position in any of the companies mentioned. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days.We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Fool's disclosure policy always gets a perfect score.

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