The third quarter of 2012 was a very good one for large-cap stocks: The Dow Jones industrial average rose by 5 percent, and three of its stocks were up by more than 13 percent: Home Depot, JPMorgan Chase, and Procter & Gamble.
But it’s when you get down into the really little stocks where you find the amazing short-term gains. Nine different stocks – listed on any American exchange – managed to double in value over the course of the third quarter. Those stocks are:
Zale Corporation (ZLC), up 156.5 percent
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What it is: Probably the best-known stock of this group, Irving, Texas-based Zale operates a series of retail jewelry stores throughout the nation, primarily in shopping malls.
What happened: Zale is a turnaround story. Its earnings report announced losses for the second quarter, but they were narrower than previous quarters, and an 11 percent jump in same-store sales got investors’ attention. Analysts now think Zale could return to profitability next year. In August alone, the stock gained 86 percent.
Primero Mining (PPP), up 102.3 percent
What it is: Headquartered in Vancouver, British Columbia, Primero operates primarily gold and silver mines in Mexico. It bought the San Dimas mine back in 2010, paying $500 million for what appears to be gold and silver reserves worth $2 billion.
What happened: After announcing the discovery of a new gold vein in one of its mines at the end of June, it was mostly a steady rise for this stock. The share price was up 35 percent in July, 30 percent in August, and 17 percent in September.
(AP Photo/Mikhail Metzel)
Fidelity Bancorp (FSBI), up 104.6 percent
What it is: A Pittsburgh-based bank with 14 branches in western Pennsylvania.
What happened: It announced plans for a merger with WesBanco, a Wheeling, W.Va.-based regional bank holding company. On July 20, the day after the announcement, Fidelity’s share price shot up 65 percent, from 12.78 to 21.09.
Savannah Bancorp (SAVB), up 106.2 percent
What it is: A bank holding company located in Savannah, Ga.
What happened: In early August, SCBT, a South Carolina-based regional bank, announced it was buying Savannah Bankcorp. On Aug. 6, Savannah’s stock jumped from 5.55 to 9.03, and its volume spiked from 1600 shares traded to 386,200 shares.
WSB Holdings (WSB), up 108.5 percent
What it is: Headquartered in Bowie, Md., WSB operates Washington Savings Bank, with five branches in the Baltimore-Washington corridor.
What happened: Our third and final bank merger. On Sept. 10, WSB announced it would be acquired by Old Line Bancshares, another D.C.-area bank holding company. The stock popped by 83 percent in that single day. The volume went from a measly 900 shares traded on Sept. 10 to 257,000 shares traded on Sept. 11.