Skip to main content

Top Five Fast-Growth Stocks

Mobile Telesystems and Chicago Bridge and Iron take the lead.

Each week, Ratings compiles a list of the top five stocks in five categories -- fast-growth, all-around value, large-cap, mid-cap and small-cap -- and publishes these lists in the Ratings section of our Web site.

This list, last updated Nov. 30, is based on data from the close of the previous trading session. Today, fast-growth stocks are in the spotlight. These are stocks of companies that are projected to increase revenue and profit by at least 12% in the coming year and rank near the top of all stocks rated by our proprietary quantitative model, which looks at more than 60 factors.

The stocks must also be followed by at least one financial analyst who posts estimates on the Institutional Brokers' Estimate System. They are ordered by their potential to appreciate.

Note that no provision is made for off-balance-sheet assets such as unrealized appreciation/depreciation of investments, market value of real estate or contingent liabilities that might affect book value. This could be material for some companies with large underfunded pension plans.

Mobile TeleSystems OJSC


, a mobile-phone operator, has been rated buy since September 2005. The Russian company has experienced solid growth in revenue and net income, a strong cash level and attractive return on equity. However, the company faces increased competition and declining revenue in the handset and accessories segment.

Third-quarter profit increased 34.6% to $654.7 million or 33 cents a share. EPS missed the consensus estimate of $1.16 a share. Revenue grew 23.3% to $2.22 billion. In September, the company announced the acquisition of an 80% stake in International Cell Holding, which is a 100% indirect owner of K-Telecom CJSC, Armenia's largest mobile-phone operator. This should help open growth opportunities in the fast-growing Commonwealth of Independent States.

Chicago Bridge and Iron


, an engineering and construction company, has been rated buy since August 2006. The company's strengths can be seen in several areas, such as its robust revenue growth, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures, solid stock price performance, impressive record of EPS growth and compelling increase in net income. These strengths are expected to outweigh the company's weak operating cash flow.

Third-quarter net income increased 80% over a year ago to $58.7 million, or 61 cents a share, while revenue climbed 36% to $1.17 billion. The company has demonstrated a pattern of EPS growth over the past two years. We believe that this trend should continue. Chicago Bridge and Iron has also raised its guidance for 2007, and last week the company said it was awarded an $80 million contract to expand an oil refinery in Cartagena, Colombia.



manufactures and sells dispensing systems to the personal care, cosmetic, pharmaceutical and food/beverage markets worldwide. It has been rated a buy since October 2005.

Third-quarter revenue increased 19.9% on the year to $485.69 million, powered by strong sales, favorable exchange-rate movements and acquisitions. These factors, along with lower net interest expense and lower tax rates, boosted net income by 39.5% to $39.48 million for the quarter. AptarGroup also implemented a share buyback program authorizing the repurchase of about $19.70 million worth of stock during the fourth quarter. In addition to noting its financial performance, Ratings is encouraged by the company's solid fourth-quarter earnings outlook, its initiatives to increase shareholder returns and its strong balance sheet.

Power company



has been rated buy since May 2006. The company has increased its global investments in energy efficiency as well as power and industrial infrastructure. This has led to a significant increase in orders. ABB expects to benefit from the increasing demand for energy in China, India and the Middle East, with projections for the Asian market to grow by 50% and the Middle East and African markets to grow by 40% by 2011.

ABB has shown strong growth in its top-line due to margin expansion, lower interest expenses and a higher income from discontinued operations. Third-quarter net earnings climbed 86% to $738 million, while revenue increased 26% to $7.19 billion. ABB is exposed to certain risks, including fluctuation in currency rates, rapidly changing technology and increasing competition, all of which could significantly affect its prospects.

Brazilian oil company

Petroleo Brasileiro


has had a buy rating since September 2005. The company's revenue growth has outpaced the industry average, and its stock price has increased over the last 12 months. And while any stock can fall in a broad market decline, it should continue to move higher. Petrobras' stock is also attractively valued. The company's third-quarter net earnings slipped 22% because of such factors as higher import costs, pension fund contributions and foreign-exchange impact. Revenue gained 3%. Petrobras' strengths outweigh the company's somewhat disappointing return on equity.