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Best-Performing Stocks Under $5 in 2011

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9. Capital Trust (CT)

Company Profile: Capital Trust is a finance- and investment-management company that specializes in credit-sensitive structured financial products. The company is primarily focused on the commercial real estate industry.

The stock spiked in April after Capital Trust announced a debt restructuring deal, which was financed by a new $83 million mezzanine loan provided by an affiliate of Five Mile Capital Partners.

Current Share Price: $3.57 (June 27)

2011 Total Return: 130%

Analyst Ratings: There are no analysts following Capital Trust.

TheStreet Ratings has a "sell" rating on the stock, which it has maintained for two years. The latest report highlights Capital Trust's "feeble growth in its earnings per share, deteriorating net income and weak operating cash flow."

8. Level 3 Communications (LVLT)

Company Profile: Level 3 Communications is an integrated Internet networking services provider. In April, the company said it would acquire fellow communications services company Global Crossing (GLBC) for $2 billion.

Shares of Level 3 have steadily increased this year, with a big rise last week on news the company was able to lower its borrowing costs through a $600 million bond sale. In May, Level 3 reported an adjusted first-quarter loss that beat analysts' forecasts.

Current Share Price: $2.27 (June 27)

2011 Total Return: 131%

Analyst Ratings: Level 3 is one of the most widely followed stocks on this list, garnering 12 overall ratings from analysts. D.A. Davidson is one of only two firms with "buy" ratings on the stock. Another seven firms, including Oppenheimer, suggest investors hold on to shares, while three firms rate the stock a "sell."

TheStreet Ratings has a "sell" rating on the stock, which it has maintained for two years. The latest report says Level 3's "primary weakness has been its feeble growth in its earnings per share."

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