No Holiday Cheer for These Stocks

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The markets went into the long weekend with a bit of good cheer, rising as lower unemployment numbers and better housing figures made everyone feel jolly. So even if your stock took a nosedive, don't panic. First, let's see whether it had good reason to fall. Sometimes, panic-fueled drops can make excellent buying opportunities. Here's the latest crop of cratered stocks that could provide a possibility for profit:

Stock

CAPS Rating(out of 5)

Friday's Change

CalAmp (NAS: CAMP) ***(17.9%)
Deer Consumer Products (NAS: DEER) *(6.2%)
LDK Solar (NYS: LDK) **(5.7%)

The Dow jumped 124 points Friday, or 1%, so stocks that went down by even larger percentages are pretty big deals.

Losing your connection
Wireless networking specialist CalAmp remains one of those behind-the-scenes support companies that its customers probably couldn't live without if they went away. Providing the technology to track and communicate with your resources -- whether it's personnel or vehicles -- regardless of where they're located is becoming increasingly important for companies, and CalAmp is the leader here.

Not only helping satellite-programming providers EchoStar and its parent DISH Network  locate their equipment at their customers' homes, CalAmp provides radios to railroads like CSX (NYS: CSX) , Norfolk Southern, and Burlington Northern Santa Fe, where it expects to see the first real revenue contributions hit the income statement in 2013.

But probably because it is still some time away, CalAmp's stock fell after reporting earnings that saw diminished contributions from the satellite segment year over year. While revenues were up year over year and margins were higher sequentially, the market remained disappointed with how business was progressing.

It remains largely out of view from much of Wall Street and Main Street, but those who have weighed in expect it to beat the market averages, with 80% of the CAPS members rating it having a positive outlook.

Add CalAmp to your watchlist and let us known on the CalAmp CAPS page or in the comments section below whether you're in its camp.

In the breakdown lane
Both Deer Consumer Products and LDK Solar were two stocks that saw significant movement in their shares last week for no discernable reason I could find, which indicated the gains wouldn't hold for very long.

In Deer's case, the home furnisher at least showed it was continuing to take a hardline stance against short sellers who it says were falsely disparaging its company. But its move higher was simply the result of its issuing two press releases over the course of two days essentially saying, "those bad short-sellers are at it again and we're still mad" after its stock stumbled. Hardly worth the big run-up it enjoyed, but Friday's fall gave back only some of those gains.

CAPS member MajorBob04 can't wrap his head around the company's financials, joining the growing number of investors thinking Deer may be caught in the headlights.

As for LDK, I found nothing to account for its decline, just as nothing seemed responsible for the run-up. First Solar (NAS: FSLR) was rumored to be a potential takeover candidate, but since it uses cadmium telluride in its panels, it's set apart from the polysilicon plays like LDK and Suntech Power (NYS: STP) . And what's good for First Solar isn't necessarily good for the others.

Then you have BP abandoning the solar market, despite its long history of investment in it. It's basically thrown up its hands, which should say more about the future of the sector than anything you might want to read into the decision of another oil company, Total, to boost its stake in SunPower's to about 66% last week.

I've made my bet in my CAPS portfolio that LDK will underperform the market going forward because I don't think many solar shops will survive in the subsidy-free world we're moving toward. But let us know in the comments section below or on the LDK Solar CAPS page whether you think at some point it will become too cheap for an acquisitive company to ignore, and then be notified if it happens by adding it to the Fool's free portfolio tracker.

Ready for a resurrection
Just because your stock has taken a beating, that doesn't mean it's going to roll over and die. Markets are known for overreacting. Balance out the extremes by having a mix of stocks, funds, and ETFs that will help you maximize your retirement savings. You can find them in The Motley Fool's brand new report, "The Shocking Can't-Miss Truth About Your Retirement." This is a special free report that you can access right now -- it's free.

Editor's Note: A previous version of the article listed DIRECTV as EchoStar's parent company, but EchoStar is actually a spin-off from DISH Network. The Fool regrets the error.

At the time this article was published Fool contributorRich Dupreyholds no position in any company mentioned. Check out hisholdings and a short bioto see his holdings and a short bio. The Motley Fool owns shares of First Solar.Motley Fool newsletter serviceshave recommended buying shares of Total and First Solar. Try any of our Foolish newsletter servicesfree for 30 days. We Fools don't all hold the same opinions, but we all believe thatconsidering a diverse range of insightsmakes us better investors. The Motley Fool has adisclosure policy.

Copyright © 1995 - 2012 The Motley Fool, LLC. All rights reserved. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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