4 Stocks Hitting Their Highs

By Billy Fisher | July 29, 2009 AAA

A few months ago, there were very few stocks hitting new 52-week highs. Now that the equity markets themselves have been steadily rising, more and more companies are seeing their stock prices climb to levels not seen in over a year. Let's take a look at four notable names that are hitting new highs.

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Kindling for the Fire
Investors were already pushing the online retailer Amazon (Nasdaq: AMZN) up to a new 52-week high before it was set to report its Q2 earnings on Thursday. The optimism came on the heels of better than expected results from competitor eBay (Nasdaq: EBAY).

Amazon ultimately reported a 13.5% drop in Q2 EPS on a 14% increase in revenue. Amazon has recently shifted its focus to the company's Kindle portable reader for e-books and the like. In May, the company launched an optimized Kindle store application for Apple's (Nasdaq: AAPL) iPhone. When the original Kindle application for the iPhone was released in March, it became the most popular books application in the iPhone app store within days. Amazon also recently announced the blockbuster deal to buy online shoe retailer Zappos.com for nearly a billion dollars. Amazon's future looks bright.

Game On
The online Chinese game developer Changyou.com (Nasdaq: CYOU) is one of the only companies bold enough to undertake an IPO so far in 2009, and it has been one of the most successful. Shares of Changyou.com have soared 100% since the company went public back in April. CYOU is coming off of a big Q1 in which non-GAAP fully diluted ADS jumped 100% on a 50% spike in revenue on a year-over-year basis.

Another company with an interest in the gaming space is the online game services company Netease.com (Nasdaq: NTES). The company's stock has been on a tear this year as it has soared 90% year-to-date. In May, the company reported a 20.5% increase in gross profit on a 19.9% pop in total revenue compared to the company's prior year Q1.

Netease.com has benefited from the success of its two flagship games, Fantasy Westward Journey and Westward Journey Online II. For fiscal year 2009, analysts are expecting the company to finish with year-over-year EPS growth of 16.6% and a 27.4% improvement in total revenue.

New Coffee War
Starbucks
(Nasdaq: SBUX) is still well off of its multi-year highs, but is quickly turning around its fortunes and is already at a new 52-week high. The company is fresh off of a Q3 that topped analysts' estimates as the coffee chain was able to trim costs and reduce its short-term borrowings to a zero balance by quarter end. Starbucks is bound to face increased competition from McDonald's (NYSE: MCD) as Micky D's continues to roll out its own line of espresso drinks, but Starbucks has the operating prowess to rise to the challenge.

The Bottom Line
It wasn't that long ago that the market was flooded with stocks hitting new 52-week lows on a daily basis. Now that the market appears to have turned the corner, at least temporarily, there have been some breakout performers hitting new 52-week highs. These are just a few of the notable performances. Should the market continue in the direction it is currently going, there will be many more new highs in the weeks ahead. (To learn more, see Be Aware Of The Hindenburg.)

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