Ever since its inception more than a year ago, Rising Star analyst Alyce Lomax and her socially responsible portfolio have garnered the highest returns. But over the past month, she lost that spot to Jason.
Don't cry for Alyce, though. Her portfolio is still outperforming the S&P 500 by more than 3%; Jason's just happens to be doing better, at 6% over the market average. Neither one can rest on their laurels, however, as there's a pack of 12 other hungry analysts nipping at their heels.
Over the past two weeks, those analysts have called out their intentions to buy shares of three different companies. Add these companies to your Watchlist and receive personalized news whenever it arises. And at the bottom, you'll be offered access to a special free report on the stock's the world's smartest investors are buying right now.
Ford (NYS: F)
Fool analyst Andrew Tonner just scooped up shares of a second company for his portfolio. Though he acknowledges that the Great Recession really put Ford -- and the car industry -- through the wringer, he sees "tons of tailwinds" to push the company forward.
Among those tailwinds: Andrew sees Ford as a company whose stock is trading cheap; he sees pent-up demand for new cars ready to help sales take off; the company is improving its debt situation; Andrew likes the company's deep management depth, especially since CEO Alan Mulally is leaving in a few years; and finally, as icing on the cake, Andrew's excited that Ford shareholders will now have a dividend arriving from the company as well.
Add Ford to My Watchlist.
Arcos Dorados (NYS: ARCO)
Spanish majors out there would be able to tell you that "arcos dorados" means "golden arches." If that makes you think this company has something in common with McDonald's (NYS: MCD) , you'd be right.
Matthew Argersinger and Paul Chi run their Street Fighter portfolio looking for cheap, unloved stocks with home-run potential. In Arcos Dorados, which is the exclusive franchiser for McDonald's in 19 Latin American and Caribbean countries, these two believe they've found home-run potential. In fact, they think the stock could be "an easy double from here."
There are two main reasons for their confidence. First is the rising middle class in many Latin American countries. As more and more wage-earners gain disposable income, more and more people who previously couldn't afford it are becoming potential McDonald's customers.
Second, the potential for expansion is mind-boggling.
Latin America and Caribbean
No. of McDonald's Restaurants
Source: Company filings.
You don't need to be a rocket scientist to see that with so few stores and so many more people, the growth potential is very promising for this company.
Add Arcos Dorados Holdings to My Watchlist.
Apple (NAS: AAPL)
Finally, Fool analyst Jim Mueller shares with us an important lesson in investing: Don't anchor on a stock's price. The insidious practice of only zeroing in on the cost of a company's shares at a particular time really cost Jim: "But once the price got above $400, I decided to wait for the ever-famous 'pullback' before increasing the portfolio's stake" in Apple.
That's too bad, because a purchase of Apple's shares at $400 would have earned a 35% return already. In fact, Jim wrote his rec just a few days ago, and it's already up more than 5% since then.
Well, Jim learned his lesson and has bought more Apple shares for his portfolio. The company's destroying the competition, and Jim sees the iPhone moving in to wipe out Research In Motion's lead in the business sector.
Most importantly, Jim sees the company's halo effect -- whereby the act of buying, say, iPhones eventually leads customers to buy more Apple laptops -- starting to catch on, and he offers some compelling evidence to prove his point:
Source: Company press releases.
TTM = trailing 12 months.
The company just crossed over the $500 billion mark in size, but that doesn't mean it's not worth a look right now.
Add Apple to My Watchlist.
Shop where only the smart investors are going
Getting back to our new leader, Jason states that he keeps his options wide open when investing. That's why he labeled his portfolio as the "motley" one. In fact, he's put money behind smaller regional banks, and those moves have paid off for him.
Our team of analysts has been thinking the same thing lately. They've assembled a special free report, "The Stocks Only the Smartest Investors Are Buying," detailing such banks and explaining why they're such an appealing buy right now. To find out which banks they are, get your copy of the report today, absolutely free!
At the time this article was published Fool contributorBrian Stoffelhopes Jason appreciates the poetic effort at the beginning of this piece. Brian owns shares of Apple. You can follow him on Twitter, where he goes by@TMFStoffel.The Motley Fool owns shares of Apple and Ford.Motley Fool newsletter serviceshave recommended buying shares of Ford, Apple, Arcos Dorados, and McDonald's, creating a synthetic long position in Ford, and creating a bull call spread position in Apple. 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.
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