My Top 5 Stock Pick Sources for 2005

Written By: Henry Lu

1. Insider Buying Information

Insiders are company’s CEO, Chairman, board directors, executive vice president of various departments.

Insider buying information top my list for obvious reasons. Insiders have lots of reasons to sell their shares: buying a house, huge vacation expense, etc. However, there is usually only one reason when insiders buy their company’s shares with their personal money: the insiders believe the stock price are cheap and they can make money by buying their own stocks.

Insider buying information is also very informative to understand market sector movement. Many time I looked at the insider buying information from sector point of view. Certain sector during certain period of time constantly had insider buying activities from different companies of the same sector, which could indicate a sector wide undervaluation or bullishness. That was exactly what I found in late 2003 and early 2004 when I found insiders of lots of oil and natural gas companies constantly buying their stocks. Eventually I picked two oil and gas stocks in late 2003 and early 2004 Whiting Petroleum (ticker WLL) and Chesapeake Energy (Ticker CHK) from insider buying information and they have been huge success for my premium investment newsletter Blast Investor Real-time Plus (BIRTP) and rewarded myself financially very significantly.

2. Guru Watch

It is certainly worth the effort to track stock picks or ideas from legendary gurus such as Warren Buffet, Eddie Lambert, Jim Rogers, etc.

Wall Street Journal is great source of investment and financial information. My 2003 stock pick PetroChina (PTR) was from an article of Wall Street Journal, which published news of Warren Buffet buying PTR. I immediately bought into PTR stock on the same day that I read the article and profited handsomely from this pick.

Warren Buffet is the best value investor in the world and you can not afford to ignore him. One way to track Warren Buffet picks is to go to Yahoo Finance and then read news headlines under stock ticker of BRK-A.

Recently, internet information grew so large and I believe it is now much easier to track gurus from web rather than reading newspapers or magazines. An easier way to track guru picks is to use tracking services offered in the web. Here I highly recommend the tracking service provided by Gurufocus.com. Gurufocus tracks almost all the value-oriented Wall Street gurus. Their list of gurus is huge, Warren Buffet, Edward Lambert, George Soros, etc. They even publish a newsletter alerting you the latest guru buy and sell actions. Their service is great and best yet, it is all free!

3. Software Screening Tool

BlastInvest operates internally a Mysql based relational database storing about seven thousand stocks with all kinds of valuation metrics and tools that I can do for Benjamin Graham NCAV ranking, return on equity modeling, low pe or low price to sale screening, etc. We update database information every week and I constantly mine the database looking for the huge winner that can reward both me and my newsletter readers.

Insider buying information could be even more powerful when you can combine insider buying information with valuation or strategy screening, which exactly what we do at BlastInvest with this powerful internal relational database.

However, I found the free or cheap screening tools out there in the web are not impressive. Validea.com tool is nice, but it lacks the powerful feature that I want. Yahoo tool or MSN tool works, but still they are not for power value investors. Therefore, I may rank my internal screening tool very high for getting stock leads, you may be dissappointed if you do not have access or can not pay for those powerful tools at reasonable cost.

4. Online Message Board Networking

Stock message boards are wild and you may be surprised that I put this as one of top sources of information for getting stock leads. Well indeed, I got tips and found very solid stock leads from internet message boards.

Actually, I started myself as quite wild BBS stock guru many years ago before I started blastinvest.com newsletter business. Lots of Chinese American friends who frequently visit big online BBS (mitbbs.com, or goofiz.com) would know my past track record very well. My past BBS investment performance certainly beat performance of most if not all of the value mutual funds hands down. My past history certainly can tell you something on the nature and quality of message boards. Sure, most of BBS members probably are not investing gurus, and some folks in the stock forum may well be dangerous stock promoters or hypers. But certainly there are some excellent stock gurus there and there are valuable investing or stock pick information there. So just be careful and do your homework when you use information from online stock boards.

Two of the well known value investing forums in US are Valueforum and Value Investor Club. Unfortunately, Valueforum is fee based message board and you can not post any messages without paying fee. Value Investor Club seems to reject beginners or amateurs and they only want gurus (maybe Wall Street Gurus) offering stock tips to each other.

I myself certainly disagree with approaches of Valueforum or Value Investor Club. That is why Blastinvest LLC recently launched a free forum dedicated for individual value investors: value-investing-forum.com. For more information on why you should participate in a forum regardless whether you are a value investing beginner or a savvy value investor, please click here: http://value-investing-forum.com/viewtopic.php?t=483

5. Traditional Newspapers and Magazines

This group includes Investor’s Business Daily, Forbes, Fortune, Barrons, etc, I read them all from time to time.

If you live near New York city and tune in to Bloomberg radio, you are going to hear bombardment of ads such as “Barrons, the best source of stock investing information”.

However, my rating on their capability of giving me stock leads or ideas are poorer than above channels. The stock picks published in the public media are pretty mediocre.

Of course, I still believe they are very useful information to understand economics and to know what Wall Street gurus are doing or thinking. So they may not be worth subscription fee for you to pay, they are certainly worth your time to visit public library once a while to read them.

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* Article by Henry Lu of BlastInvest LLC, a premium investment newsletter publisher in Connecticut. Visit http://www.BlastInvest.com for FREE “how-to” investing assistanc

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