) -- Put down the 10-K filings and the stock screeners. It's time to take a break from the traditional methods of generating investment ideas. Instead, let the crowd do it for you.
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From hedge funds to individual investors, scores of market participants are turning to social media to figure out which stocks are worth watching. It's a concept that's known as "crowdsourcing," and it uses the masses to identify emerging trends in the market.
Crowdsourcing has long been a popular tool for the advertising industry, but it also makes a lot of sense as an investment tool. After all, the market is completely driven by the supply and demand, so it can be valuable to see what names are trending among the crowd.
While some fund managers are already trying to leverage social media resources like Twitter to find algorithmic trading opportunities, for most investors, crowdsourcing works best as a starting point for investors who want a starting point in their analysis. Today, we'll leverage the power of the crowd to take a look at
some of the most active stocks
on the market today.
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These "most active" names are the most heavily-traded names on the market -- and often, uber-active names have some sort of a technical or fundamental catalyst driving investors' attention on shares. That's especially true now that earnings season is officially underway. And when there's a big catalyst, there's often a trading opportunity.
Without further ado, here's a look at
Alpha Natural Resources
Nearest Resistance: $7.50
Nearest Support: $6.75
Catalyst: Earnings, Outlook
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Statistically speaking, materials stocks have been the biggest price winners on the heels of earnings surprise this quarter, and
Alpha Natural Resources
) is providing the perfect case in point today. Alpha reported a 61-cent per share loss for the third quarter, less than the 77 cents in the red that Wall Street expected. Better, the firm expects to see better numbers in the coming year thanks to lower coal production costs.
Even though ANR has been hammered lower for most of 2013, the downtrend in shares broke back in the middle of October, pointing to a reprieve for shareholders. Resistance at $7.50 could still be a stumbling block in the near-term, though; risk averse investors should wait to see if ANR can catch a bid above $7.50 before buying.