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Tickers in this Article: ADM, BEAV, EBAY, HWD, RAD
When a stock gets really pummeled and is driven down near its 52-week low, it's common for many existing shareholders to jettison their shares and seek greener pastures. Sometimes running away isn't always the best choice, however.

There's fistfuls of money to be made by conducting thorough research on companies and stocks that are trading at or near their 52-week lows. The key is to separate the stocks with comeback potential from those that are in free-fall. (For related reading, see Turnaround Stocks: U-Turn To High Returns.)

To get started, here is a list of five well-known companies that are currently trading near their lows, and which probably deserve follow up research:

Price as % of
52-Week High/Low

Market Cap
Archer Daniels Midland
BE Aerospace
Harry Winston
2.04 %
Rite Aid
Data as of market close August 27, 2008

To learn more on how these were calculated, read What is the "percentage off the 52-week high or low"? How is this calculated?

BE Aerospace Flying Low
The company makes items like beverage and food storage equipment and oxygen systems for airlines. As the world's population increases and demand for both pleasure and commercial air travel increases, I think BE Aerospace has a solid shot to experience some nice growth.

The company is coming off a solid second quarter, where it reported earnings of $53.9 million, or 59 cents per share. This was was a really nice jump over the $28.4 million, or 31 cents per share, it earned in the comparable period last year. It was two cents north of what the Street had been looking for.

BE Aerospace expects 2008 earnings of approximately $2.37 per share excluding certain costs. It is also expecting to earn $2.85 per share in 2009 and $3.65 per share in 2010. These estimates are worth a second look considering the stock currently trades for under $25 per share. (For added insight, read Investment Valuation Ratios: Price/Earnings Ratio.

The Downside
In a prolonged economic slowdown airlines might scale back spending on equipment. Again there is no guarantees. However, it is sometimes possible to find an investment candidate or a so-called diamond in the rough by looking at beaten down stocks.

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