Piotroski’s Best and Worst Large Cap Stocks

By Joel Stonington - 2011-12-06T01:37:02Z

Photograph by David Paul Morris/Bloomberg

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Piotroski's Best: ConocoPhillips

Business: Explores, produces, refines and markets natural gas, petroleum

Piotroski Score: 9

By one Piotroski measure, ConocoPhillip's (COP) return on assets jumped from 2.99 percent in fiscal 2009 to 7.36 percent in fiscal 2010 -- its latest annual data available. By another, the company's gross margin rose from 8.64 percent in 2009 to 9.79 percent in 2010.

Outlook for the Company:

Bull Case: As of August, natural gas demand had risen 2.8 percent year-over-year -- a trend that bodes well for energy companies, according to Bloomberg Industries.

Bear Case: Bloomberg Industries points out that natural gas stocks peaked in July 2011, even though natural gas prices stopped rising.