Five Fast-Growing Stocks

BOSTON ( TheStreet) -- In a choppy market, it's best to look for stocks that can grow in any economic scenario. Here are five to consider.

5. Medco Health Solutions ( MHS) is a pharmacy benefit manager.

The numbers: Third-quarter net income increased 13% to $336 million and earnings per share climbed 19% to 69 cents, boosted by a lower share count. Revenue grew 18% to $15 billion. Medco's gross margin remained steady at 7%, and its operating margin was unchanged at 4%. A quick ratio of 1 reflects adequate liquidity. A debt-to-equity ratio of 0.7 indicates conservative leverage.

The stock: Medco has advanced 54% this year, more than major U.S. indices. The stock trades at a price-to-earnings ratio of 26, a premium to the market and health care service peers. Medco doesn't pay a dividend.

4.Teva Pharmaceutical Industries ( TEVA) is an Israel-based drugmaker.

The numbers: Third-quarter net income inched up 3% to $649 million, but earnings per share fell 6% to 72 cents. Revenue increased 25% to $3.6 billion. Teva's gross margin decreased from 57% to 54%, but its operating margin expanded from 23% to 24%. A quick ratio of 0.9 indicates less-than-ideal liquidity. A debt-to-equity ratio of 0.3 reflects modest leverage.

The stock: Teva has risen 28% this year, beating the Dow Jones Industrial Average and S&P 500 Index. The stock trades at a price-to-earnings ratio of 57, a premium to the market and pharmaceutical peers. The shares have a 1.2% dividend yield.

3. DeVry ( DV) sells training courses and degree programs.

The numbers: Fiscal first-quarter net income increased 57% to $55 million, or 76 cents a share, as revenue grew 42% to $431 million. DeVry's gross margin remained steady at 57%, and its operating margin rose from 15% to 18%. A quick ratio of 0.9 indicates less-than-ideal liquidity. A debt-to-equity ratio of 0.1 demonstrates modest leverage.

The stock: DeVry has fallen 5% this year, trailing major U.S. indices. The stock trades at a price-to-earnings ratio of 21, on par with the market and education peers. The shares have a 0.4% dividend yield.

2. Lincoln Educational Services ( LINC) provides career education.

The numbers: Third-quarter profit more than doubled to $14 million, or 50 cents a share, as revenue grew 48% to $148 million. Lincoln's gross margin rose from 63% to 65%, and its operating margin increased from 10% to 16%. The company has a liquid balance sheet, with $38 million of cash and $37 million of debt.

The stock: Lincoln has advanced 60% this year, beating major U.S. indices. The stock trades at a price-to-earnings ratio of 14, a discount to the market and education peers. Lincoln doesn't pay dividends.

1. Neogen ( NEOG) sells food safety tests.

The numbers: Fiscal first-quarter net income increased 18% to $4.4 million, or 29 cents a share, as revenue grew 12% to $32 million. Neogen's gross margin rose from 55% to 57%, and its operating margin expanded from 20% to 21%. The company has an ideal financial position, with $24 million of cash and no debt.

The stock: Neogen has climbed 34% this year, outpacing the Dow and S&P 500. The stock trades at a price-to-earnings ratio of 35, a premium to the market and health care supply peers. The company doesn't pay dividends.

Now see five small-cap stocks with growth potential >>>

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