The Apple Inc. logo is displayed at the Upper West Side Apple store in New York, U.S., on Sunday, July 20, 2014. © Michael Nagle, Bloomberg via Getty Images

Compiled from StockScouter ratings by Verus Analytics

While consumers wait for Apple (AAPL) to release a new, larger-screened iPhone 6 – widely expected to be announced at a Sept. 9 media event – investors aren’t waiting to buy the stock.

Shares of the consumer tech giant leapt past $100 this week for the first time since the stock’s 7-for-1 split earlier this year. And Friday, despite reports of a possible delay as suppliers scramble to produce enough screens for the new devices, Apple shares closed at a split-adjusted all-time high.

Apple, which pays a 1.9 percent dividend, receives a ‘10’ from the StockScouter rating system on MSN Money, the highest score possible. Based on StockScouter’s analysis, shares of Apple are expected to significantly outperform the market over the next six months with less than average risk.

Read the full Scouter report on Apple here.

StockScouter Top 10 for Aug. 22, 2014

Company

Sector

Dividend yield

Forward P/E

Scouter score

Apple (AAPL)

Consumer electronics

1.9%

14.1

10

Activision Blizzard (ATVI)

Video games

0.9%

16.410

Cognizant Technology Solutions (CTSH)

Information technology

NA

16.3

10

21st Century Fox (FOXA)

Media0.7%14.510

Itau Unibanco Banco Multiplo SA (ITUB)

Regional banks, Latin America0.4%9.410

KeyCorp (KEY)

Regional banks

1.9%

12.2

10

MetLife (MET)

Insurance

2.6%

8.7

10

Newmont Mining (NEM)

Gold mining

0.4%

22.3

10

Annaly Capital Management (NLY)

Real estate investment trust (REIT)

10.1%

10.2

10

NetApp (NTAP)

Data storage

1.6%

13.4

10

StockScouter beats the market

We think the StockScouter rating system developed by Verus Analytics for MSN Money is one of the best tools you can use when you're trying to decide where to invest.

StockScouter looks for stocks whose business fundamentals, price behavior, valuation and stock-ownership characteristics appear to predict a rising price in the future, based on how those factors have influenced stock prices in the past.

The system assigns each stock an expected six-month return and balances that return against the stock's expected volatility.

Scouter rates stocks on a scale of 1 to 10, and ratings can change daily. Ratings and data in the chart above were current as of this article's publication date.

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In addition to the daily top 10 list described above, StockScouter is used by investment research firm Verus Analytics (previously known as the quantitative business unit of Gradient Analytics) to generate a monthly benchmark portfolio of stocks that, refreshed monthly, has outperformed the market since its inception in August 2001.

An investor who began in 2001 by investing in each of the benchmark portfolio's top 10 stocks at the start of the month, selling them at the end of the month and then starting fresh with a new group of 10 stocks, would have generated returns, before trading costs and taxes, of 1,084 percent through June 30, 2014.

Writer Jon Markman, at the time a columnist for MSN Money, collaborated with company researchers on the tool.

Markman suggested rolling over the top 10 stocks every six months to hold down trading costs, a strategy that might be a better fit for most investors; that would yield different results, which would vary based on your starting point.

Performance through June 30, 2014

Full 50 position portfolio    

Index

1 month

3 month

6 month

1 year

Since
inception

Average
annual
return

Portfolio

3.9%

3.5%

5.7%

24.9%

617.5%

16.9%

Nasdaq

3.9%

5.0%

5.5%

29.5%

117.5%

8.1%

S&P 500

1.9%

4.7%

6.1%

22.0%

61.8%

4.9%

DJIA

0.7%

2.3%

1.5%

12.9%

59.9%

4.7%

Top 10 portfolio

Index

1 month

3 month

6 month

1 year

Since
inception

Average
annual return

Portfolio

2.3%

1.3%

3.9%

19.4%

1,084.2%

20.9%

Nasdaq

3.9%

5.0%

5.5%

29.5%

117.5%

8.1%

S&P 500

1.9%

4.7%

6.1%

22.0%

61.8%

4.9%

DJIA

0.7%

2.2%

1.5%

12.9%

59.9%

4.7%

Inception: August 2001