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Here are the 24 stocks high-speed traders love

The 25 most popular stocks for high-frequency traders

High-frequency traders like their targets big, with share prices cheap (but not too cheap) and with a fairly low level of volatility.

That's according to a study published Tuesday on Investopedia, which charted 24 companies that meet metrics HFT firms have favored historically. The study, authored by Elvis Picardo, portfolio manager at Global Securities in Canada, utilizes trading data and a 2009 study from Woodbine Associates that also helped identify what high-speed participants look for in a company.

HFT firms use algorithms to capitalize on often-tiny moves in stock prices. They see to beat other traders to the punch, finding inefficiencies in prices that lead to big gains.

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Contrary to some belief, HFT traders are different from their counterparts on the momentum who look for lightly traded shares that can move quickly. HFT programs in fact require high volumes in order to executive the volume needed to generate profits.

Picardo used three criteria to determine stocks that best fit the bill: price below $50, low volatility (beta values below 1.5) and market capitalization of at least $50 billion.

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They are:

Favorite stocks for high-speed traders

Bank of America
Ford Motor
Cisco Systems
Morgan Stanley
General Motors

Some of the stocks not included: Google and Apple, because they're too expensive.

Also, you won't see Facebook and Twitter on the list, either. They're for the momentum players, who have gotten burned this year chasing the high-flyers.

For the full list, click here.