TIKR: a lightweight, cost-effective financial data terminal

TIKR is a startup whose goal is to bring institutional-quality investment research tools to a broader audience.  TIKR provides:

  1. Standardized financial data (from S&P Capital IQ) so that you can quickly put together financial models.
  2. High-quality conference call transcripts with better coverage and fewer typos than many other transcript providers.
  3. News.

While TIKR is in beta, you can sign up for a free account.

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Safe stocks to own in a coronapocalypse

Currently, the stock market is in a weird situation where most stocks have exposure to the systemic risk of COVID-19.  As it is highly likely that social distancing will become the new norm, a long list of businesses will be badly hurt: airlines, restaurants, movie theatres, music events, conventions, lenders, etc.

If the COVID-19 situation drags on for 3+ years, you don’t want your portfolio to blow up because of it.  It would make sense to put a good portion of your portfolio into less risky investments that will survive.  Because individual stocks can blow up, it is a good idea to diversify (e.g. 10-30+ stocks).  It’s also a good idea to avoid owning too many stocks with similar risks (e.g. stocks in the same industry, too much COVID-19 risk, etc.).

Stocks discussed: CNC, UNH, CHTR / LBRDA, TSN, HRL, COST, PGR, V, MA, MCO, SPGI, FB, GOOGL, IAC / MTCH, VRSN.

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A model portfolio of large cap stocks

I’ve started an experiment where I’m keeping a public portfolio of large cap stocks via the Motley Fool CAPS system- you can view it here.  I would like to see if I can generate value on the long side… something that I find much, much more difficult than shorting.

My criteria are:

  1. Pick only the quality businesses in a particular sector.  For example, Dollarama is the clear leader among discounters.
  2. Not overpriced.  For that reason, Amazon and Netflix don’t make the cut (just look at what happened to Amazon during the Dot-Com Bubble).
  3. I avoid industries where there are no clear industry superstars.  Oil and mining stocks simply don’t make the cut as none of them are quality businesses.
  4. Lastly, I avoid dying or shrinking industries.  Profits ultimately don’t grow in dying industries and therefore those stocks almost never do well.

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