Fortunes Are Still Being Made!

Remember a company called NuVasive, Inc. (NASDAQ/NUVA)? I wrote about this company in this column back in the middle of April and the end of June. This stock’s been bucking the market trend for a while.

NuVasive is a medical device company that designs and sells products for the surgical treatment of spine disorders. The company’s main product offering includes: a minimally disruptive surgical platform called “Maximum Access Surgery” that offers proprietary software to help avoid nerve damage; a split-blade design retraction system; and specialized implants. The company, founded in 1995, is based in San Diego.

The company recently reported great second-quarter earnings and raised its guidance for upcoming periods. The stock just hit a new record high of $57.82 per share and the company just crossed $2.0 billion in market capitalization.

It’s a rare find to get a stock that’s moving strongly higher in the current environment. It’s my contention that if a stock is doing great in a market like this, it must have substantial institutional interest behind it. Imagine what it would do if this was a bull market?

Another great high flyer is Axsys Technologies, Inc. (NASDAQ/AXYS). This is one interesting company selling high-performance surveillance cameras, imaging systems and other “motion control” technologies. Axsys mainly sells to the aerospace, defense and commercial markets. Some of the company’s products include long-range thermal cameras, high-performance stabilized camera systems, precise sensor positioning systems, scanning systems and auto focus systems.

Recently, Axsys reported strong financial growth in its second quarter.

According to the company, 2008 second-quarter revenues grew 40% to a record more than sixty million dollars, up solidly from revenues of forty-three million dollars generated in the second quarter of 2007.

Net income for the second quarter grew over 60% to $6.1 million, or $0.53 per diluted share, up from net income of $3.8 million, or $0.35 per diluted share, in the second quarter of 2007.

Axsys noted that its revenue growth was mainly due to continued strong demand for infrared cameras and lenses from military customers. The company’s operating margins also improved during the latest quarter.

Axsys raised its full-year 2008 revenue expectations to between two hundred and thirty-seven million and two hundred and forty-one million dollars, up from two hundred and twenty-four million to two hundred and twenty-eight million dollars. The stock recently broke through its 52-week high of $75.00 per share and is up over 50 points in the last 12 months.

Clearly, these two stocks are the exceptions in a marketplace that is lacking in sentiment. It’s good to know, however, that some fortunes are still be made in an otherwise lackluster market.