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Tuesday's Top Performing Small Cap Stocks (RLRN, FN, PTX, VSEC, FSTR)

Wyatt Research Staff

All good things come to an end, and the curtain came down on a three-day run-up in small-cap stocks on Tuesday.

The Russell 2000 Index fell for the first time since August 10, after the index had rebounded from the recent sell-offs by nearly 9 percent.

Yet there were some rising stars to be found across many sectors, including old-line and high-tech manufacturing, biotechs and software developers and a couple of acquisitions.

Crude Carriers (NYSE:CRU), a small cap not part of the Russell 2K or S&P Small Cap 600, closed 22.1 percent higher. The Marshall Islands-domiciled, Greek-headquartered tanker operator, which pays a dividend currently yielding 14 percent, is being taken over by Capital Product Partners L.P.

For the day, the Russell 2000 Index lost 1.93 percent in value, while the Standard & Poor's Small Cap 600 was down 1.75 percent. By comparison, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was off 0.67 percent, the S&P 500 closed 0.97 percent lower, and the Nasdaq Stock Market finished down 1.24 percent.

Tuesday's Top Performing Small Cap Stocks (Data provided by Google Finance)

Renaissance Learning (Nasdaq:RLRN): The best of the shares listed on the Russell 2000 and the Standard & Poor's Small Cap 600 was Renaissance Learning, a developer of educational software and hardware products for grades K-12. Shares hit a 52-week high after the company said it is being taken private by Pemira Funds in a $440 million deal. In July, Renaissance reported a 23 percent profit jump as revenue grew 15 percent.

Fabrinet (NYSE:FN): The Bangkok-based provider of manufacturing services reported its fiscal fourth-quarter profit rose 14 percent as revenue increased 21 percent. JPMorgan analysts upgraded the stock to overweight from neutral and set a $21.50 price target.

Pernix Therapeutics (Amex: PTX): The supplier of pediatric pharmaceutical products reported second-quarter earnings that exceeded analysts' expectations as its revenue nearly tripled. Its primary drug, Cedax, is used to treat respiratory infections, and it's launching Natroba for head lice.

VSE (Nasdaq:VSEC): The government contractor's stock has been weighed down by the recent loss of an Army contract and talk of defense cutbacks. Shares are off 28 percent this year.

L.B. Foster (Nasdaq:FSTR): The manufacturer of products and services used in the construction, utility and rail industries has rebounded in the past week from knee-jerk reaction to second-quarter results that, while satisfactory, revealed softening orders and a dispute with the Union Pacific Railroad.