The Globe and Mail attempts to identify stocks analysts hate in its Friday, Feb. 1, edition. The Globe's Jody White writes in the Number Cruncher column that a Wall Street Journal study published in 2011 found the 10 top-rated stocks provided a combined return of 24 per cent in 2010. That compared with a return of 32 per cent for shunned stocks. In 2009, the top-rated portfolio would have netted a 22-per-cent return, while the "loser" portfolio would have returned a cool 70 per cent. Surprisingly, it turns out unpopular stocks can have far more upside potential than most stocks highly regarded by analysts. Mr. White screened for Canadian stocks with more than five recommendations and at least three "sell" recommendations. He looked for stocks that had a high negative consensus among analysts. Given the low hopes that surround Mr. White's picks, they should have an easier time beating expectations than their widely touted brethren. Mr. White says that may mean a bigger payday for those willing to take a chance on them. Stocks analysts recommends avoiding are Northland Resources, Bell Aliant, TransAlta, Poseiden Concepts, Connacher Oil & Gas, DragonWave and Migao.