BOSTON ( TheStreet) -- U.S. stocks have tumbled 15% from a 52-week high three months ago, as investors moved out of riskier assets on signs the economy is slowing. Still, a diverse group of S&P 500 stocks, from MasterCard ( MA) to Lorillard ( LO), have climbed as much as 84% this year.The S&P 500, the benchmark for equity investments in the U.S., is now down almost 8% in 2011 after two years of strong gains. The decline is largely the result of a tumultuous August, when the U.S. saw its triple-A credit rating downgraded by Standard & Poor's for the first time in history following a tense debate over the debt ceiling. Stocks, as measured by the S&P 500, have slumped 10% this month.
10. Discover Financial ( DFS) Company Profile: Discover is a U.S. credit card issuer, and offers customers other consumer loans and deposit products. 2011 Total Return: 32.3% Current Share Price: $24.40 (Aug. 25) Unlike most financial stocks that have been mired in the red, shares of Discover have outperformed the market this year. In July, the stock hit a 52-week high of $28 shortly after Discover reported a 133% increase in second-quarter net income. The jump in profit came thanks to an increase in card sales volume and total loans, as well as a decline in provisions for loan losses. The conservative lending approach has made the stock a favorite among analysts. Thirteen researchers have a "buy" rating on shares, including FBR Capital and Sandler O'Neill, and another 10 say investors should hold onto shares. No Wall Street firm has a "sell" rating on the stock, according to a Bloomberg survey of analysts. The average price target of $29 represents upside potential of 17%.