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Is this the bottom for Mermaid Marine Australia Limited, New Hope Corp and Regis Resources Limited?

While the S&P/ASX 200 Index (Index: ^AXJO) (ASX: XJO) continues to flirt with multi-year highs, there are plenty of stocks slumping to new 52-week lows causing distress for shareholders. This situation is especially prevalent amongst companies exposed to the resource sector.

The following three stocks are all trading near their yearly lows and while commodity prices will ultimately play a big part in the future performance of these companies, investors prepared to take a risk may currently have the opportunity to buy in near the bottom.

Mermaid Marine Australia Limited (ASX: MRM)

Mermaid’s share price has sunk from $3.50 a year ago to $1.95 today. During that time a number of institutional investors have been increasing their holdings in the company including Perpetual Limited (ASX: PPT). Interestingly much of the fall in share price can be attributed to the announcement in late February of the acquisition of Singapore-based competitor Jaya for $550 million. The acquisition was funded through a mixture of new equity raised and debt with the equity raising done at $2.40 per share.

New Hope Corporation Limited (ASX: NHC)

New Hope is a coal mining company which largely flies under the radar of investors despite its $2.4 billion market capitalisation. The share price is down from around $4 to under $3 today as the company adjusts its cost base to weak thermal coal prices. New Hope enjoys the support of shareholders Washington H. Soul Pattinson and Co. Ltd (ASX: SOL) which own 60% of the company and Perpetual which recently upped its stake to 9%.

Regis Resources Limited (ASX: RRL)

Gold miner Regis Resources has been battered not only by the declines in the gold price, but also by weather events which have hampered its production volumes. The share price has fallen from $4.20 a year ago to just $1.43 today.  The presence of global gold mining giant Newmont on Regis’ share register with a 20% stake is a consideration for investors analysing the stock at these levels.

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Motley Fool contributor Tim McArthur owns shares in Perpetual Ltd.

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