Grading the Graders: Analyst Stock Picks for 2012
The research firm says its PowerPicks Portfolio, chosen by its analysts' at year-end 2011, "represent(s) the collective best ideas of its U.S. equity research staff" with the goal of "superior total return" for the coming year.
So far, so good.
Given that each of the firm's industry analysts make picks, the resulting portfolio of 20 stocks are from all 10 economic sectors comprising the benchmark S&P 500 Index.
This year the PowerPicks rose an average of 14% at the end of the first quarter, versus the S&P 500's 12% gain.
But they've done even better since, as they're up an average 14.2% through Monday, versus the S&P's 9.6% gain, and have outperformed the 12.8% return of the average large-cap growth mutual fund tracked by Morningstar.
Each of the stocks in the portfolio carries at least a four-star ("buy") S&P rating and the majority a five ("strong buy"), under the firm's Stock Appreciation Ranking System (STARS), a qualitative stock-selection methodology based on fundamental research by S&P's equity analysts.