In This Chapter
Getting to know stock screens
Discovering how stock screens can pinpoint stocks that meet your standards
Locating and using online stock-screening tools
Deciding which criteria to base your screens on
Finding out what kinds of screening tools online brokers offer
Using screens to compare a company with its peers and industry
One of the most popular questions investors ask is, "What stock should I buy?" These investors figure that, amid the pile of thousands of publicly traded stocks, a handful of stocks will be the big winners for the year. They're right. There will be stocks that are big winners and big losers each year. The problem, though, is that no one knows ahead of time which ones.
No online tool can tell you what stocks will be next year's winners. But some online resources and databases can help you find stocks with traits you believe make them likely candidates.
This chapter shows you how online screening tools are your best friend when you're trying to sort through thousands of stocks for those you might want to own. Online screening tools scour Wall Street for stocks that meet criteria you set. I show you a few of the top online stock-screening tools and give you some pointers on how to use them. You also find out about many ways you can filter stocks and how to pick criteria for your screen. I also cover methods to compare companies with their peers or other companies.