Investors are always on the lookout for a winning strategy, which is easier said than done. When markets are rattled by widespread global growth concerns, it is difficult for even the most perceptive investors to come up with a foolproof plan.
No matter how disciplined and systematic investors are, equity market volatility will always manage to get the better of them. While a few lucky ones rake in the moolah, others fall victim to ad hoc strategies.
One could resort to commonly used techniques to find beaten down stocks that have the potential to recover faster than others. However, even such investment choices bear the risk of disappointment. Particularly, one could be stuck in a value trap if the hidden weaknesses in selected stock are not identified.
So, wouldn’t it be safer to look for stocks that are winners at present and have the potential to gain further?
Here’s how to execute it:
One should primarily look for stocks that have recently been witnessing price increase. Actually, stocks seeing price strength recently have a high chance of carrying the momentum forward.
If a stock is continuously scaling higher, there must be solid reason backing the rise or else it probably would have yielded like the losers. So, looking at stocks that have already won the game and are capable of beating the benchmark that they have set is rational.
However, recent price strength alone cannot weave the magic. Therefore, you need to set other relevant parameters to create a successful investment strategy.
Here’s how you should create the screen to shortlist the current as well as the potential winners.
Percentage Change in Price (4 Weeks) greater than zero: This criterion shows that the stock has moved higher in the last four weeks.
Percentage Change Price (12 Weeks) greater than 10: This indicates that the stock has seen momentum over the last three months. This lowers the risk of choosing stocks that may have drawn attention due to the overwhelming performance of the overall market in a very short period.
Zacks Rank 1: No matter whether market conditions are good or bad, stocks with a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) have a proven history of outperformance. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.
Average Broker Rating 1: This indicates that brokers are also highly hopeful about the stock’s future performance.
Current Price greater than 5: The stocks must all be trading at a minimum of $5.
Current Price/ 52-Week High-Low Range more than 85%: This criterion filters stocks that are trading near their respective 52-week highs. It indicates that these are strong enough in terms of price.
Here are seven of the 13 stocks that made it through this screen:
Weight Watchers International, Inc. (WTW - Free Report) is the largest provider of weight control programs in the world. The stock surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate in the trailing four quarters with an average positive surprise of 126.4%.
Johnson Outdoors Inc. (JOUT - Free Report) is a leading global outdoor recreation company that turns ideas into adventure with innovative, top-quality products. The stock surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate in the trailing four quarters with an average positive surprise of 602.1%.
Harsco Corporation (HSC - Free Report) is a services and engineered products company. The stock surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate in the trailing four quarters with an average positive surprise of 24.4%.
Turning Point Brands, Inc. (TPB - Free Report) provides tobacco products. The company's products consist of moist snuff, loose leaf chewing tobacco, cigarette papers, make-your-own cigar wraps and cigar smoking tobacco, cigars and liquid and tobacco vapour. In the last reported quarter, the company delivered a positive earnings surprise of 16.7%.
Enova International, Inc. (ENVA - Free Report) is a provider of online financial services. The stock surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate in the trailing four quarters with an average positive surprise of 38.3%.
DMC Global Inc. (BOOM - Free Report) is a technology company. Its operating sector consists of industrial infrastructure and oilfield products and services. The company surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate thrice in the trailing four quarters while matching the same on one occasion. It delivered an average positive earnings surprise of 69%.
MSA Safety Incorporated (MSA - Free Report) is engaged in the development, manufacture and supply of safety products that protect people and facility infrastructures. The company surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate thrice in the trailing four quarters while missing the same on one occasion. It delivered an average positive earnings surprise of 16.4%.
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Disclosure: Officers, directors and/or employees of Zacks Investment Research may own or have sold short securities and/or hold long and/or short positions in options that are mentioned in this material. An affiliated investment advisory firm may own or have sold short securities and/or hold long and/or short positions in options that are mentioned in this material.
Disclosure: Performance information for Zacks’ portfolios and strategies are available at: https://www.zacks.com/performance.
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