These stocks have been through a lot and survived
|Company||May 2 Price||% Change Last 12 Months||% Change YTD||Short Ratio||Price/Sales Ratio|
|WCI Communities (WCI:NYSE)||13.40||-56.3||31.4||11||0.49|
|Children's Place (PLCE:Nasdaq)||15.23||-56.8||43.1||10||0.6|
|Factory 2-U Stores (FTUS:Nasdaq)||5.28||-62.9||54.8||10||0.16|
|Metris Cos. (MXT:NYSE)||3.42||-73.2||38.5||9||0.14|
|Paxson Communications (PAX:NYSE)||3.46||-65.4||68||9||0.84|
|Atlas Air Worldwide (CGO:NYSE)||2.10||-83.6||39.1||8||0.1|
|Amkor Technology (AMKR:Nasdaq)||8.61||-50.1||80.9||7||0.87|
|Continental Airlines (CAL:NYSE)||11.80||-50.6||62.8||6||0.09|
|Lucent Technologies (LU:NYSE)||1.85||-58||46.8||6||0.75|
|Allmerica Financial (AFC:NYSE)||16.24||-67.6||60.8||5||0.26|
|Source: MSN, Value Line|
The first of our Ralston Raiders is a decent example: Epcos (EPC) is the world's second-largest manufacturer of passive electronic components -- those funny-looking things such as capacitors, and surface acoustic wave devices that stud the circuit boards of your computer, cell phone, television, digital camera, rail-car brake system or automotive air bag. They may not be as exciting as the CPU or graphics chip, but they process signals, control the supply of energy and generally make the thing work.
Germany-based Epcos is essentially a joint venture of the Munich industrial conglomerate Siemens and the Japanese conglomerate Matsushita. The stock traded in the upper $100s during the heyday of the tech-stock bubble. Then it fell as far as $5.70 during the bloodbath last fall.
It's been steadily rising all year, but still trades at a paltry price-to-sales multiple of 0.79. A multiple of 1.0 or even 1.5 would not be expensive for a market leader with such a diversified client base. Barring global depression, it's fair to expect the stock to double to trade back to the $30 range over the next two years, as it muscles up to give short-sellers a bloody nose.