BALTIMORE (Stockpickr) -- This morning's kick-off to trading may be overshadowed by Cyber Monday shopping volumes -- but it's still significant. Today's opening bell marks the first trading session of December, and the final countdown to the New Year. As I write, 2015 is just 20 full trading sessions away.
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As the market opens in December, the big S&P 500 Index is on track to post 13% gains for the 2014 calendar year. And statistically speaking, December is the strongest month of the year.
Couple that with an environment that's forced central banks to ramp up QE efforts, and dropping commodity prices, and the chances of a stock-boosting intervention from the Fed are skyrocketing too. That doesn't mean it's smart to close your eyes and buy stocks with both hands here, but it does mean that select names should continue to rally for the month ahead.
To take full advantage of the market's year-end momentum, we're turning to a set of five new Rocket Stocks.
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 276 weeks, our weekly list of five plays has outperformed the S&P 500's record run by 77.63%.
Without further ado, here's a look at this week's Rocket Stocks.
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