Hello Friends! Thanks so much for stopping by and visiting my blog, Stock Picks Bob's Advice! As always, please remember that I am an amateur investor, so please remember to consult with your professional investment adviser prior to making any investment decisions based on information on this website.
I had a nice letter from Pat B. who asked me some questions about getting started investing. Pat wrote:
"Hey, I'm 16 years old and starting stocks for the first time in my life. I come to you because from what I looked at was the most fan friendly site to read. I'm currently in a business class, so I'm not totally unaware of everything. I'm kinda looking to get started however. If you were to predict ahead: What three stocks do you think have the best chance of soaring upwards. Obviously this can be a total hit and miss science. I"m just looking to get started and do some research.I've also been interested in ROY: International Royalty. They seem to me like they are on the verge of breaking out. What do you think?Thank you so much,Pat
Pat, thanks so much for writing. You have asked me the one thing I really try very hard at avoiding...giving specific investment advice to specific investors about specific stocks :).
There is a well-quoted Chinese proverb, which I am sure you have heard repeated ad nauseum in your business classes:
"Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime."
I know it is a bit trite now, but that is exactly what I want you t get from reading my blog. Not the individual stocks that as I like to say will go stale as fast as a dozen bagels sitting on the kitchen table, but rather the process of selecting stocks and starting to learn how to manage your own portfolio. If you can get this, even if it is very different from my own peculiar techniques, then you will have something that indeed will 'feed you' for your lifetime.
That being said, I would encourage you to read through my blog. There are literally hundreds of stocks discussed and from there see if there are any that strike your fancy. Be sure and take a look at the latest quarter, an updated Morningstar exam, and look at the chart and see if intuitively the stock chart is intact. If so, you may have a great stock on your hands.
You asked about ROY. Let me take a quick look at this stock that I am not at all familiar with and see if I can get a feeling for it. I obviously do not own any shares nor do I have any options on ROY.
As I write, ROY is trading at $7.72/share, a bit less than what I like to see for a stock. On February 22, 2007 ROY reported 4th quarter 2006 results. They also turned profitable this year coming in at $.05/share up from a loss of $(.01) last year.
Unfortunately, I depend on Morningstar.com for information that I can depend on for free cash flow, balance sheet, etc. etc. etc. And ROY doesn't have any information on this.
I guess they are in the Uranium business and if I had to hazard a guess, somebody like Cramer has been hollering booyahs from here to Canada about Uranium stocks. He is a smart guy and may well be right about this one.
However, since you are 16 and starting out, do you really want to 'swing for the fences' on your first at bat? Isn't it wiser to buy something that makes sense, and that you can own for a long time (?) or at least demonstrates a greater level of what I would call "quality". Maybe this just shows my age, my experience, or my distrust of aggressive investing in small untested companies. But I would suggest a new investor to be more concerned about investing in a solid, high-quality, and growing business that has a record of profitability and has verifiable information.
Now that's my take. I hope that isn't too much of a disappointment for you. If you were my son, those are the things I would be telling you. Do not be afraid of a stock that is priced over $10 or $20. The number of shares that you can purchase is far less important than the value of each share that you purchase. And go for base hits on your first times at bat. Don't swing for the fences.
Good luck, tell me what you decide, keep on visiting, don't get discouraged, and thank you for all of your kind words.
A fellow amateur investor,