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Top Five Mid-Cap Stocks

Manitowoc, Atwood Oceanics are in the lead.

Each weekday, 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, updated daily, is based on data from the close of the previous trading session. Today, mid-cap stocks are in the spotlight. These are stocks of companies that have market capitalizations of between $500 million and $10 billion that 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.


(MTW) - Get Free Report

manufactures and markets cranes and related products, food service equipment and marine products. It has been rated a buy since July 2005. The company demonstrates notable revenue growth, significant EPS improvement, impressive stock price appreciation and net income growth that has significantly outpaced that of the

S&P 500

and its industry. Its price level is now somewhat expensive compared with the rest of its industry, but given the company's strengths, the higher price is justified.

Atwood Oceanics


, an oil drilling contractor, has been rated a buy since July 2005. The company holds a largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels, expanding profit margins, and impressive growth in revenue, net income and earnings per share. Atwood Oceanics recently reported third-quarter earnings of $98.4 million, up from $71.9 million a year ago.

The company has demonstrated a pattern of positive earnings per share growth over the past two years and this trend is expected to continue. Atwood's debt-to-equity ratio is very low at 0.07 and is currently below that of the industry average, implying that there has been very successful management of debt. The energy equipment and services industry is cyclical and mature -- its fortunes are directly tied to the general economic activity that drives energy demand.

Cameron International


provides flow equipment products, systems and services to oil, gas and process industries worldwide. It has been rated a buy since August 2005. The company's revenue increased by 32.8% in the second quarter of 2007 over the year-earlier period. Growth was driven by strong demand for its engineered products and drilling equipment, a result of an increase in drilling and production activities. Ratings feels this solid performance should continue on the basis of a favorable industry outlook and a record order backlog. Dependence on the oil and gas industry is the major source of risk. High prices for oil could lead to a decline in demand or an increase in the use of alternative energy. This in turn may lead to a slowdown in drilling activity, which would negatively affect Cameron's earnings. There is also a risk the company won't be able to fulfill the huge order backlog, which could not only affect sales and profitability, but also jeopardize customer relations and the goodwill of the company.

Dick's Sporting Goods

(DKS) - Get Free Report

, a sporting goods retailer, has been rated a buy since September 2005. The company has enjoyed expanding margins with growth in revenue and net income. These factors are further enhanced by strong cash levels and low leverage level.

Second-quarter sales climbed 38.1% to $1.01 billion, sparked by a 7.2% increase in comparable-store sales, or stores open at least a year, the opening of new stores, and the inclusion of Golf Galaxy's quarterly results. Net income surged 86.6% to $47.93 million, triggered by the increase in net sales and gross profit. Earnings per share increased 76.6% to 83 cents. Cash and cash equivalents increased 53.3% to $50.49 million. The downside risks include higher real estate costs and declining return on equity.


(BAP) - Get Free Report

rejoins the top-five mid-cap ranking for the first time since May. The Peruvian financial services firm has been rated a buy since August 2005. The company's revenue growth has been higher than that of the industry average, helping create a pattern of EPS improvement over the past 24 months.

Net income growth has significantly exceeded that of the S&P 500 and the commercial bank industry, and return on equity has likewise outpaced the industry average. Even though Credicorp's stock has soared 114.31% in the 12 months prior to Aug. 3, making it relatively expensive in comparison with others in the industry, its strengths justify the higher price level.