One of the most useful applications of Portfolio Grader will always be to watch for stocks that are getting upgraded. Today I want to continue to look at some stocks that have very recently received upgrades to a “buy” rating and may be poised for enormous moves. As the market advance continues to narrow this summer, it’s more important than ever to identify stocks with the very best fundamentals that are attracting attention and buying pressure form the large institutions.
American Public Education’s (APEI) industry has been wildly out of favor on Wall Street. The online education business has suffered from increasing regulatory scrutiny and oversight as well as the weak economy. But American Public Education’s focus on military and public service sectors has allowed the company to avoid most of the headwinds facing the group. It has reported fantastic earnings growth for the past several years, and most analysts expect more of the same. APEI has posted four consecutive positive earnings increases, and Portfolio Grader has noticed the steady improvement in the company’s fundamentals. The stock was upgraded this week to a “B” and is a “buy” at the current price.
Advanced Semiconductor (ASX) is a semiconductor packaging and testing company based in Taiwan. It also offers electronic contract manufacturing for computers, consumer electronics and automotive electronics. While many semiconductor companies are struggling, Advanced has posted two consecutive positive earnings surprises and reported another solid quarter last Friday. This week these changes are reflected in Portfolio Grader — the stock has been upgraded to a “B.” This is the second upgrade in the past month and the stock is a “buy.”
We are continuing to see the smaller regional and community banks upgraded in Portfolio Grader. Conditions are improving for the industry as the credit problems caused by the financial crisis are fading into the past and the economy is showing signs of a slow, steady improvement. Century Bancorp (CNBKA) is the holding company for Century Bank of Medford, Mass. The bank has 24 branches in its home state; it also provides short-term financing to municipalities in Massachusetts and Rhode Island as well as securities brokerage. The improvement in the fundamentals for the industry and the bank are now reflected in its ratings and Portfolio Grader upgraded the shares to a “B” this week after being bumped up to a “C” last week — it’s been steadily progressing in the rankings. The stock is a “buy,” and I would not be surprised to see it upgraded to a “strong buy” before the end of the year.
Tracking stocks that are upgraded to a buy is a great way to identify the very best opportunities in today’s market. Fortunately Portfolio Grader can help spot the improvement in fundamentals and buying pressure as they happen.
Louis Navellier is the editor of Blue Chip Growth.