5 Stocks Hitting 52-Week Highs

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) - The following stocks hit 52-week highs on Tuesday: DSW ( DSW), Ecolab ( ECL), FirstEnergy ( FE), Pilgrim's Pride ( PPC) and Jack in the Box ( JACK).

DSW

The shoe retailer reported on Tuesday first-quarter earnings of $39.9 million, or 89 cents a share, a reversal from year-earlier loss of $38.1 million, or $1.74 a share.

Shares of DSW hit a 52-week high of $61.89. The stock's 52-week low of $35.72 was set on Aug. 22.

DSW's stock currently trades at an estimated price-to-earnings ratio for next year of 16.14 times; the average for apparel retailers is 13.79X. For comparison, Foot Locker ( FL) has a lower forward P/E of 11.98X.

Eight of the nine analysts who cover DSW rate it at buy; one analyst gives the stock a sell rating.

The stock has risen 39.11% year to date.

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Ecolab

Shares of Ecolab hit a 52-week high of $65.53 on Tuesday. The stock's 52-week low of $43.81 was set on Aug. 9.

Ecolab's stock trades at a forward P/E of 18.2X; the average for specialty chemicals companies is 11.4X. For comparison, Mosaic ( MOS) has a lower forward P/E of 9.2X.

Eleven of the 18 analysts who cover Ecolab rate it at buy. Six analysts give the stock a hold rating and one rates it at sell.

The stock has risen 12.71% year to date.


FirstEnergy

The diverisifed energy company's subsidiary Pennsylvania Electric is consolidating its operations. The consolidation is expected to be completed in the fall.

Shares of First Energy hit a 52-week high on Tuesday of $48.17. The stock's 52-week low of $38.77 was set on Aug. 9.

First Energy's stock currently trades at a forward P/E of 15X; the average for conventional electricity companies is 22.4X. For comparison, Exelon ( EXC) has a lower forward P/E of 12.5X.

Ten of the 18 analysts who cover First Energy rate it at buy; eight analysts give the stock a hold rating.

The stock has risen 8.37% year to date.

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Pilgrims Pride

Shares of Pilgrim's Pride hit a 52-week high of $8.15 on Tuesday. The stock's 52-week low of $2.81 was set on Aug. 19.

Pilgrim's Pride's stock currently trades at a forward P/E of 6.83X; the average for food products companies is 18X. For comparison, Smithfield Foods ( SFD) has a higher forward P/E of 7.45X.

Of the seven analysts covering Pilgrim's Pride, three are at buy, three are at hold, and one rates it a sell.

The stock has risen 38.19% year to date.


Jack in the Box

Shares of Jack in the Box hit a 52-week high of $24.87 on Tuesday. The stock's 52-week low of $18.25 was set on Aug. 19.

Jack in the Box's forward P/E is 15.84; the average for restaurant and bar companies is 16.28. For comparison, Wendy's ( WEN) has a higher forward P/E of 22.36.

Analyst comment:

"We continue to rate JACK shares Underperform but are raising our price objective from $18 to $21 as we shift our valuation methodology from our FY12 to FY13 estimates," Bank of America Merrill Lynch analysts wrote in a May 17 report. "We are raising our FY 12 and FY13 respective EPS estimates from $1.36 and $1.54 to $1.42 and $1.57, mostly driven by better margins. We continue to believe Jack's valuation seems rich, at a premium to other QSR stocks, including those with significant international businesses."

Seven of the 13 analysts who cover Jack in the Box rate it at hold. Three analysts give the stock a buy rating and another three rate it at sell.

The stock has risen 18.04% year to date.

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-- Written by Alexandra Zendrian in New York.

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