BALTIMORE (Stockpickr) -- Almost halfway through 2015, and 2.7% is all that investors have managed to wring out of the big S&P 500 index. Take dividends out of the picture, and that performance number drops to a barely-there 1.7% gain year-to-date.
But things aren't quite as they seem. While, at a glance, it may look like the S&P hasn't done much, the reality is that plenty of individual stocks are making meaningful moves this year. In fact, despite the measly performance numbers that the S&P 500 has put up this year, a full 43% of S&P 500 components are at least 10% higher or lower than they started on Jan. 1.
The fact is that a big chunk of the broad market is making moves. You just won't see those moves translate to the market averages right now.
So, to find the big stocks primed for more big moves in June, we're turning to a fresh set of Rocket Stocks worth buying this week.
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 303 weeks, our weekly list of five plays has outperformed the S&P 500's record run by 76.56%.
Without further ado, here's a look at this week's Rocket Stocks.
Here's a fact that may surprise you if you've been following the energy sector in recent months: Oilfield service giant Schlumberger (SLB) is actually up in 2015. In fact, shares are up more than 6.7% on a total returns basis since the calendar flipped to January.
That's some pretty significant outperformance for a stock that most people had probably already written off for 2015. And Schlumberger looks well-positioned to keep that trend going this summer.
Schlumberger is the biggest oilfield service provider in the world, offering oil companies a menu of niche services such as seismic surveys and well-drilling and positioning. Basically, Schlumberger's job is to help energy producers pull energy commodities out of the ground as efficiently and cheaply as possible. The firm consistently spends more than a billion dollars a year on R&D, a fact that gives Schlumberger the ability to out-engineer rivals and customers.
While the recent crunch in crude oil prices has certainly been a negative for Schlumberger, it's been mitigated somewhat by the fact that low oil prices mean that
E&Ps need to pull oil out of existing projects as efficiently as possible. If Schlumberger can justify its fees by boosting production numbers, then it should continue collecting paychecks from oil companies. That's a big part of why this stock has been able to rebound in 2015.
With rising analyst sentiment building in shares this week, we're betting on this Rocket Stock.