How to Compile Your Own Stock Investment Research Department

You don’t need to spend an excessive amount of time or money, but you should maintain your own library of resources. You may only need one shelf (or a small amount of memory on your computer’s hard drive), but why not have a few investment facts and resources at your fingertips? You can keep it on your computer for easy search and reference.

When you start your own collection, follow these tips:

  • Keep some select newspapers. Barron’s, The Wall Street Journal, and Investor’s Business Daily regularly have some editions that are worth keeping. For example, The Wall Street Journal and Investor’s Business Daily usually publish a year-in-review issue the first business week in January. Barron’s has special issues reviewing brokers and financial websites.

  • Subscribe to financial magazines. Publications such as Forbes and SmartMoney offer great research and regularly review stocks, brokers, and resources for investors.

  • Keep annual reports. Regarding the stocks that are the core holdings in your portfolio, keep all the annual reports (at the very least, the most recent three).

  • Go to the library’s business reference section periodically to stay updated. Hey, you pay the taxes that maintain the public library — you may as well use it to stay informed.

  • Use the Internet for research. The web offers plenty of great sites to peruse.

Financial reports are very important and easier to read than most people think. An investor can easily avoid a bad investment by simply noticing the data in what seems like a jumble of numbers. Figure out how to read them.

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