Play it Even Safer: Be Current
For yet another level of research, visit the website Briefing.com. In the top right, you’ll see a “Search” tab — click on this then enter your ticker symbol.
You’ll be prompted to register your email address somewhere along the way – but trust me, it’s worth it. Go ahead and do that, and then you’ll have access to an in-depth timeline that shows the very latest upgrades and downgrades, along with price targets.
All it costs you is your e-mail address, and as a frugal investor that’s a very reasonable price to pay.
OK, so you’re in. Let’s look again at Chipotle since the estimates are so disparate. Recently Deutsche Bank (NYSE:DB) analysts reiterated (that’s “reits”) their “buy” recommendation. That’s good news. But more importantly, you’ll see they moved up their target from $400 to $430 on CMG shares. That’s a significant bump — and a very good sign. It’s also the most current move on record, and thus should be given priority above older ratings on the stock.
After all, until recently Deutsche Bank was expecting $400. Who’s to say that some other investment banks currently forecasting $400 per share won’t revise their targets up soon, too?
The trickiest part of Briefing.com is the jargon. “Buy” is straightforward, as is “Sell.” But other phrasings aren’t so clear. Each investment bank has its own odd terminology.
A “hold” for instance, isn’t a bad thing. It isn’t necessarily a good thing, either. So the actual target itself is more important than a middling rating in this case.
Same for “sector perform.” Clearly the good stocks will be rated “outperform,” and the bad stocks “underperform.” But is the sector good or bad? After all, if tech is booming, then performing with the rest of the sector isn’t all that bad. Your details will be in the target itself once again.
Most confusing are recommendations on weighting for a given stock. You also might see “overweight” recommendations from time to time, and that’s actually good news. It’s jargon for saying that in the firm’s current portfolio, it is investing more money in this stock than in its peers, or that it is “overweight” in this company – which means the firm likes it. If the firm is neutral on a stock, it will be rated “equal weight” since it’s just another position but nothing special.
Briefing.com’s terminology can be confusing, but it gives you a great look at the most recent ratings and upgrades/downgrades. This is perhaps even more valuable than a comprehensive look at a few dozen analyst calls and the average target, since on Wall Street, the most recent data is by far the most relevant.
And the best thing for cheapskate investors is that this is another 100% free resource for you
Check out a complete list of Investing 101 articles by Jeff Reeves for more on learning how to invest and pick stocks.
Also, for just 99 cents you can download Jeff’s e-book “The Frugal Investor’s Guide to Finding Great Stocks: 11 Free Resources to Help Beginners Identify Fantastic Investments.”
You can also buy a printed copy of “The Frugal Investor’s Guide” for $15.10 via online publisher Lulu.