Schaeffer's Senior Quantitative Analyst Rocky White recently ran a study to look at the best stocks from an Expectational Analysis® point of view. To qualify for the top stocks list, each name had to be positive over the past 52 weeks and have outperformed the broader S&P 500 Index (SPX). In addition, each stock needed to see an increase in short interest, a decrease in the percentage of analyst "buy" ratings, and have a Schaeffer's put/call open interest ratio (SOIR) above 1.00 -- indicating a short-term bias toward put options over calls.
Based on those criteria, below is White's list of the most bullish stocks. Zions Bancorp (NASDAQ:ZION) leads the relatively small group of seven. While the shares are lower profile than many other bank stocks, their prospects are strong, from a contrarian perspective. As of last night's close at $40.19, ZION was up nearly 59% over the last 12 months -- the SPX is up less than 14%, by comparison -- while negative sentiment has piled up. Not even half of analysts rate the outperformer a "buy," short interest has risen 16% in the past year to over 18 million shares, and short-term options traders are put-skewed. In other words, ZION stock has a chance to extend its gains via potential upgrades and short-covering activity, as well as an unwinding among option bears.
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