5 Rocket Stocks to Buy for Earnings Season

BALTIMORE ( Stockpickr) -- It's official: Earnings season kicks off this afternoon with Alcoa's ( AA) earnings call after the bell.

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The broad market has been stuck in a "no man's land" of sorts after the S&P 500 and the Dow violated the trendlines that had been propping stocks up since November. Earnings season could be just the antidote to reset us back to more directional trading. Already, corporate earnings have ratcheted their way to new record highs in 2013 -- but as analysts on Wall Street dampen their expectations for the quarter, the possibility of big earnings surprises is certainly on the table.

That could help jump-start another leg to this extended rally in stocks.

To take full advantage of all the extra eyes on the market this week, we're turning to a new set of Rocket Stocks.

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For the uninitiated, "Rocket Stocks" are our list of companies with short-term gain catalysts and longer-term growth potential. To find them, I run a weekly quantitative screen that seeks out stocks with a combination of analyst upgrades and positive earnings surprises to identify rising analyst expectations, a bullish signal for stocks in any market. After all, where analysts' expectations are increasing, institutional cash often follows. In the last 207 weeks, our weekly list of five plays has outperformed the S&P 500 by 80.72%.

Without further ado, here's a look at this week's Rocket Stocks.

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