Where to Look for Investing Ideas

March 05, 2014

Trying to figure out what stocks to buy, sell, or hold on to can be daunting. Each year, trillions of dollars are at stake in the financial markets. A lot of very smart people, all of whom are looking at exactly the same information, are trying to beat the other guy by figuring out what information in the marketplace is the most important - what's the thing about a stock, or an industry, or even the economy as a whole that everyone else is misinterpreting, and that, as a result, makes a stock or an industry more or less attractive than everyone else thinks it is? That’s really what investing is about - do you know what information matters more than the other guy?

Before you can make that decision, of course, you need to know where to look for the information that matters. It's not an exaggeration to say that the range of potential sources of information is essentially infinite. Everything matters. If you walk into a store and see a product that you've never seen before, and you think it's a winner, that may be all you need to make the right investing choice. Fortunes have been made on less. That said, there are a few particularly good resources people often look to for investing ideas.

1. Free resources

At Wall Street Magnate, we produce original content, including stock analyses written by people who work in the industry. You can find these easily on our Facebook page, and they will give you a sense of the kinds of things you'll want to think about when making investment decisions about particular stocks. A quick Google search for phrases like "stock analyses" will guide you to other sites that could also be helpful.

Also free, although a bit dense and difficult to interpret, are reports put out by the companies themselves. At the end of every quarter (e.g., March 31, June 30, etc.), and the end of every year, a company must file with the Securities and Exchange Commission reports on the company's financial and business developments over the previous quarter or year. A quarterly report is called a "10-Q", and an annual report is called a "10-K". If you want to know exactly how much a company's revenues are growing, for example, these reports can tell you that. While they can be interesting to see and read, in the early going it's probably better to stick with the other resources mentioned above and below. If you'd like to take a look at a few of these reports, you can search for them on the SEC's website here.

2. Premium resources

There are also a number of pay services that can be helpful resources in developing your portfolio. Basic newspapers are a good start. The Wall Street Journal and the New York Times business section, for example, will familiarize you with the national and international business environments. For more targeted investment advice, there are a number of premium research services that produce extensive reports on individual companies. These reports are a bit more detailed and are designed for more sophisticated investors, so like the SEC reports, it may be better to start with the other resources mentioned first. Often, even if you can’t get access to the expert reports themselves, you may be able to find summaries of premium expert recommendations on free sites.

Join Our Fantasy Trading Community
Become a Wall Street Trader
Leave this field empty

By clicking Sign Up, you agree to our terms and conditions and have read and understand our privacy policy.