10 Stocks At New 52-Week Lows

These companies are likely bad short-term bets


After the rocky start to August, many good stocks were pushed down by the market declines. Then again, many ugly stocks went from bad to worse. This resulted in a number of new 52-week lows from companies that were already on the outs and currently find themselves even worse off now that investors are jittery.

Here are 10 noteworthy stocks that are at or near 52-week lows. Conventional wisdom holds a stock that sets a new low will keep bouncing along the bottom for a while, so these may be companies to consider avoiding in the short-term:

Allos Therapeutics, Inc. (ALTH)

Industry: Drug Manufacturing

Market Cap: $465 million

52-Week Low: $4.23

8/17 Close: $4.34

Colorado based Allos Therapeutics, Inc. (NASDAQ: ALTH) is a biopharmaceutical company that specializes in the development and commercialization of anti-cancer therapeutics.  Allos has had a forgettable 2010, and the company’s stock has fallen -32.8% since January. Likewise, this drug manufacturer has posted negative earnings for four consecutive quarters.

BancorpSouth, Inc. (BXS)

Industry: Financing

Market Cap: $1.1 billion

52-Week Low: $12.90

8/17 Close: $13.17

BancorpSouth, Inc. (NYSE: BXS) is a financial holding company that conducts commercial banking and financial services through.  The bank operates in Mississippi, Tennessee, Alabama, Arkansas, Texas, Louisiana, Florida, Missouri and Illinois.  Year-to-date, this finance company has fallen -44.6%, against broader markets, which have stayed close to even.  Additionally, BXS has missed earnings estimates (which have been steadily declining) for four straight quarters.

Capstone Turbine Corp. (CPST)

Industry: Industrial Goods

Market Cap: $172.5 million

52-Week Low: $0.69

8/17 Close: $0.73

Capstone Turbine Corp. (NASDAQ: CPST) develops, manufactures, markets and services microturbine technology solutions for stationary distributed power generation applications.  With a net profit margin of -79.2%, Capstone shareholders are far from pleased.  A -44.3% drop in stock price since January has not helped either.

Conexant Systems, Inc. (CNXT)

Industry: Semiconductors

Market Cap: $139 million

52-Week Low: $1.62

8/17 Close: $1.69

Conexant Systems, Inc. (NASDAQ: CNXT) designs, develops and sells semiconductor system solutions.  These solutions include semiconductor devices, as well as software and designs for imaging, audio and video applications. That sounds like a growth industry in this digital age, but Conexant stock has fallen -25.9% in 2010. What’s more the company reported a -11.3% net profit margin for last quarter.  During the past 52 weeks, this tech stock has dropped -27.4%, while the broader markets have remained mostly stable.

Evergreen Solar Inc. (ESLR)

Industry: Diversified Electronics

Market Cap: $136 million

52-Week Low: $0.62

8/17 Close: $0.65

Technology company Evergreen Solar Inc. (NASDAQ: ESLR) develops, manufactures and markets String Ribbon solar panels, relying heavily on its wafer manufacturing technology.  Most of Evergreen’s clients reside in Europe and the United States.  This tech company has seen a major decline since January, as the share price has fallen -58.1% year-to-date. Likewise, Evergreen severely underperformed earnings estimates three of the last four quarters — and in the only quarter it surpassed estimates, it still recorded a -2 cent quarterly loss.

ISIS Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (ISIS)

Industry: Drug Manufacturing

Market Cap: $827 million

52-Week Low: $8.14

8/17 Close: $8.36

Healthcare company ISIS Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: ISIS) is involved in “antisense” technology, exploiting a drug discovery platform created to generate first-in-class drugs.  At the start of 2010, the company had 22 different drugs in development.  Unfortunately for shareholders, the pharmaceutical company’s stock has fallen -25.2% during the same time.  ISIS has reported negative earnings for four straight quarters, and had a net profit margin of -107% last quarter. Ouch!

Smith & Wesson Holding (SWHC)

Industry: Industrial Goods

Market Cap: $212.8 million

52-Week Low: $3.55

8/17 Close: $3.72

Based in Springfield, Mass., Smith & Wesson Holding (NASDAQ: SWHC) is a global provider firearms and other products for safety, security, protection and sport.  Its product lines include pistols, revolvers, rifles and other firearm related products.  Year-to-date Smith & Wesson’s stock has slid -17.7%, compared to the broader markets which have remained even.  SWHC has not fared as poorly as other companies on this list, but its stock has dropped nearly -9% since Aug. 9.

Vulcan Materials Company (VMC)

Industry: Industrial Goods

Market Cap: $5 billion

52-Week Low: $37.68

8/17 Close: $38.86

Vulcan Materials Company (NYSE: VMC) produces construction aggregates including crushed stone, sand and gravel.  Among its other products are ready-mixed concrete and asphalt mix.  In addition to a net profit margin of -3.1% last quarter, VMC’s stock has fallen -26.1% since January.  VMC has also reported negative EPS for three consecutive quarters.

West Pharmaceutical Services (WST)

Industry: Medical Instruments & Supplies

Market Cap: $1.2 billion

52-Week Low: $33.07

8/17 Close: $34.80

West Pharmaceutical Services (NYSE: WST) is a manufacturer of delivery system components for the pharmaceutical, healthcare and consumer products industries.  These products include prefillable syringe components and seals for vials, among others.  In 2010, this healthcare company’s stock has fallen -10.8%, including a -19.6% drop since mid-April.  Over the past 52 weeks, West stock has seen a -13.7% decrease.

Wright Medical Group, Inc. (WMGI)

Industry: Medical Appliances & Equipment

Market Cap: $572 million

52-Week Low: $13.77

8/17 Close: $14.59

Last on the list is Wright Medical Group, Inc. (NASDAQ: WMGI). Wright is an orthopedic medical device company engaged in the design, manufacturing and marketing of devices and biologic products for extremity, hip, and knee repair and reconstruction.  Since last August, WMGI’s stock has seen a change of -7.4%, and a year-to-date decrease of over 22% has left a particularly bad taste in stockholders’ mouths.

26 Broken Stocks to Sell Now. There’s a long list of companies that have jumped off their lows but are still trading at dirt-cheap prices. But BEWARE: these bargain stocks aren’t just cheap, they’re broken. Get their names here or risk losing your shirt.

Article printed from InvestorPlace Media, http://investorplace.com/2010/08/stocks-at-new-lows/.

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