BALTIMORE ( Stockpickr) -- Could this be the bounce week that investors have been waiting for?
at support after correcting from a rally that's brought the big index as much as 17% higher this year, too many people are wondering whether this is really the end of the rally. Sentiment numbers don't help either. Investors are more bearish as a group than they've been anytime since the first quarter of 2009.
>>5 Blue-Chip Stocks to Buy to Beat the S&P
But earnings season is coinciding perfectly with the S&P's fall to trend line support -- and with analysts expecting pretty tepid performance from U.S. equities this quarter, any meaningful earnings surprise could help to fuel the next leg of this rally. Despite the excitement of earnings season's start last week, only nine S&P components delivered their numbers so far. So with 84 S&P names scheduled to turn over their numbers this week and another 164 component firms handing over their quarterly results next week, it's clear that the data is going to grow exponentially, starting now.
That's why we're turning to a new set of Rocket Stock names this week.
For the uninitiated, "Rocket Stocks" are our list of companies with short-term gain catalysts and longer-term growth potential. To find them, I run a weekly quantitative screen that seeks out stocks with a combination of analyst upgrades and positive earnings surprises to identify rising analyst expectations, a bullish signal for stocks in any market. After all, where analysts' expectations are increasing, institutional cash often follows.
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In the last 172 weeks, our weekly list of five plays has outperformed the S&P 500 by 77.07%.
Without further ado, here's a look at
this week's Rocket Stocks
2012 has been a stellar year for customer relationship management software firm
(CRM - Get Report)
. Shares of the $21 billion company have rallied more than 51% since the start of the year, despite spending most of the last few months moving sideways.
Salesforce serves more than 100,000 businesses spread across the globe, helping them interact with their own customer lists, enabling everything from sending newsletters to tracking sales. That mission-critical nature of Salesforce's offering gives the firm a big economic moat for shareholders right now.