Just Read – Common Stocks & Uncommon Profits – Philip A Fisher

Happened to lay my hands on the audio file of this book and managed to finish the audio / book in 2 days flat. Its obviously an advantage getting the audio of books so that i can just transfer the files to my mp3 player and listen to them on my travels to work. Holding a book in hand; trying to read them during rush hour is a chore and these audio books are indeed coming handy for me.

Philip Arthur Fisher was an American stock investor who wrote this book Common Stocks and Uncommon Profits way back in 1958.  Just like Benjamin Graham’s bible of investing, The Intelligent Investor, this book is also considered to be a must read for anyone planning to invest in the stock markets.

Philip Fisher is considered a pioneer in the field of growth investing. Morningstar has called him “one of the great investors of all time”. In Common Stocks and Uncommon Profits, Fisher said that the best time to sell a stock was “almost never”. His most famous investment was his purchase of Motorola, a company he bought in 1955 when it was a radio manufacturer and held until his death in 2004.

Perhaps the best-known of Fisher’s followers is Warren Buffett who has said on some occasions that “he is 85% Graham and 15% Fisher”.  (source: Wikipedia)

Fisher goes on to give a lot of Do’s and Don’ts for investors.  A few of the Do’nts include

  • Dont buy into promotional companies
  • Dont ignore a good stock just because its traded over the counter
  • Dont buy a stock just because you like the tone of its annual report
  • Dont overstress diversification
  • Dont be afraid to buying on a war scare
  • Dont fail to consider time as well as price in buying a true growth stock
  • Dont follow the crowd

Fisher also goes about sharing his ideas of how he goes about finding a growth stock.  Fisher talks about using the Scuttlebutt method to investing.  This means that the relative points of strength and weakness of each company in an industry can be obtained from a representative cross-section of the opinions of those who in one way or another are concerned with any particular company.  Also he talks about talking to the vendors, customers etc to find the correct information needed for your investment in that particular company.

Common Stocks and Uncommon Profits
Author – Philip Arthur Fisher
Pages – 271
Publisher – John Wiley & Sons

Above picture courtesy: Nickgogerty