BALTIMORE (Stockpickr) -- The scores of investors that piled into U.S. stocks at the beginning of March would actually have been better off sitting on their hands for the last two months. Over that span, the S&P 500 has managed to move about two basis points higher. That's a paltry 0.02% move for anyone who's not used to counting performance in hundredths of a percentage point.
But that's actually painting a pretty rosy picture of the current situation. While the big index is sitting a mere 1% off of its all-time highs, J.C. Parets at Eagle Bay Capital points out that the average stock in the S&P is actually off more than 12% from its high water mark at the end of last week.
So no, stocks aren't coasting sideways right now; they're grinding. And investors are getting more frustrated by the day.
That's all the more reason to cut out the emotion and take a look at five fresh Rocket Stocks for the week ahead.
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 248 weeks, our weekly list of five plays has outperformed the S&P 500 by 77.21%.
Without further ado, here's a look at this week's Rocket Stocks.