If you do your own research for stock investments, then this article is a great starting point for finding some great stocks. There is a lot of information available on the web that enables you to find some excellent stock ideas before investing.
Things You'll Need
Check out the following websites: Yahoo Finance, MSN Money and Stockpickr. All of these sites have some great information for stock investment ideas. On Yahoo Finance, take a look under the Investment tab and "Education;" On MSN Money, go to the Investing tab then "Stock Research" on the left hand column. Also, MSN Money publishes what they call "Expert Picks." This is basically a handful of investing experts who make recommendations for stocks and publish them free of charge. These expert picks can sometimes be very useful and lead to good investments, however I would not base your whole portfolio around them.
Go to www.MotleyFool.com. This website has probably some of the best information for independent investors. The website is a massive community of expert and amateur investors looking to share their own knowledge and make sound stock picks. When looking up stocks on this site, you not only get basic information about the company, but you can also see who is recommending the stock and if they are Bullish or Bearish on it. There is also something called CAPS, which is a rating system for specific stocks. If the stock has 5 stars, then it may be a golden investment opportunity. You can also see a list all of the stocks on the website that have gained the golden-clad 5 star rating.
If your really serious about making some money and finding profitable stocks, you can purchase MotleyFool.com's "Premium Services." A team of expert investment advisers will publish stock recommendations and sell them for a moderate price. According to the website, these stock recommendations have earned investors very high returns year after year. The site's most popular service is the Stock Advisor. It's a $199 per year newsletter that is currently earning investors around a 41% yearly return...Not Bad.
Also consider buying paid research services from websites such as Zacks.com. They publish expert picks on stocks they think will rise in the market. Be very careful when looking at these websites, though. Some sites say they are selling stock picks, but will often make exaggerated claims on how much money you could make. Sometimes these stocks are very speculative and risky (i.e. penny stocks).
Watch investing shows on MSNBC and CNBC such as Mad Money with Jim Cramer. Some people criticize these shows for the lack of accuracy of their stock picks. However for a new investor, these can give some good ideas for stock investments. From there, you can do some of your own research.
Look for booming industries or companies. A simple way to get great stocks ideas, is to look for the companies or industries that are up-and-coming or making huge trends in the market. If you think an industry sector is going to shoot up over the next few years (i.e. Alternative Energy sector), then buy some stock for companies in that industry (i.e. buy solar energy stocks!). Also, look at the fundamentals of a company. If you think a company is going to be profitable and have a good balance sheet, then consider buying their stock. A good example of this is Apple; excellent products combined with good company leadership and earnings lead this company's stock to almost $200/share in 2008.