Tools I Use

6 minutes

This is a list of the different tools that I use to help me find the stocks that I investigate, track, and purchase. It is an ongoing list and I discover new tools all the time. Please check back from time to time to see what may have changed. I will update as I discover new things. This is the fun part as we discover more ways to learn about stocks and how to invest. It is never over, the learning. 

Stock Screeners:

Finviz

This is hands down my favorite screener. It is super easy to use and has great information on all sorts of financial data. It is sortable by rows and you can edit out the data you don’t want. It does have a premium edition that enables you to export your picks into an excel spreadsheet.

One of the things I like about this particular screener is that you can sort by all the financial data I am looking for to weed out the stocks I won’t be interested in. For the value investing metrics that I look for it gives me great flexibility to edit those metrics out to help narrow down the choices.

It also has links to different news sources relating to the particular company you are investigating. Another perk of this site is that if you are looking for in-depth info on a company and need the data quickly it is easy to search for that data on their site.

One last perk, it is free!

Google Finance

This is another great screener that I will use to get additional ideas. I came across this website in general thru Preston & Stig from The Investors Podcast. They use this site for their stock screener. They send out a checklist for signing up for their newsletters that have some great ratios for you to screen for.

One of the things that I like about the Google screener is not only the ability to screen for stocks but also the ability to check on all the news in the financial world.

An additional plus is you can download the app as well so you can access all of these features from your smartphone as well.

Also free.

Financial data:

Morningstar

This is one of the best sites to gather financial data on any company that you are interested in. It has ten years of data, which can be difficult to find on many sites.

The site is mainly geared to mutual funds and has many resources, including ratings of funds to help you pick the best fund for you.

However, I use it mainly as a source of financial data on the individual companies that I am trying to evaluate. It allows you to gather information from financial statements, balance sheets, and cash flows. Extremely useful information and you can sort it as you need. In addition to this information,  they also have a tab that breaks all this down to ratios. Which is extremely valuable and time saving. Lastly, they also will include the analysts’ ratings and projections which come in very handy when you are working on discounted cash flows.

Overall, this is one of my favorite sites and I spend quite a bit of time here. All the information that I have referenced is free and they also have a paid subscription which has much more extensive information as well. Offers an app that allows you to see your watchlist and track industry news.

Gurufocus

An extremely well laid out site. Gurufocus has some amazing information at your disposal. They have some great screeners that allow you to sort the data however you would like. With the site, you can create your own watch list that you can sort all of the data available to help you make your decisions. This site is probably setup a little more user-friendly than morningstar but unfortunately, some of the more advanced data is behind a paywall. 

Another useful tool is the ability to track what stocks some of the big name investors are buying or selling. You can choose any large investor and see exactly what they are doing. For example, you can search the portfolio of Warren Buffet. By law, he has to file a 13f, which details his activity within his portfolio. With this filing, you can see what is being bought and sold, how many shares are purchased, and at what date they are purchased. With this info, you can get some ideas based on what he is currently holding. This is a great tool to help you gather some ideas to investigate to possibly purchase in the future.

Another useful tool they offer is the ability to do a discounted cash flow analysis of any company. This can help you determine a margin of safety for that particular company and help you decided if it is overpriced at that particular moment. I use this a lot to help me.

Also offers an app that is very useful for tracking your watch list and some quick financial data to check up on certain companies.

Watch lists:

Seeking alpha

One of my favorite sites. I spend a lot of time on this site because of the great articles are written by so many awesome writers. There is some great analysis of companies here. It is a treasure trove of information and gives you a great idea of how a particular company is doing. You will see both sides of the coin here, bear and bull on the same company.

One of my favorite aspects of the watch lists with seeking alpha is that you can create as many different watch lists as you like. You can also name them and sort them as well. In addition to the many lists, you can create you can also drill down into each company to find out more information about that company. Great site.

Gurufocus

I already mentioned this site above so I won’t go into those aspects some more. The one thing I really like about this watch list is the ability to set a purchase price so you can see real-time results to give you a good idea of how you are doing picking stocks. This is super useful if you are trying to track companies that you aren’t sure enough to purchase but want to track their performance from a particular price point.

Morningstar

In addition to all the great features that I spoke of above, one of my favorite aspects of this site is the ability to set as many different watch lists as you like. And you can determine a purchase price and a brokerage cost which allows you to see how profitable your picks have been. It is a great way to track your purchases as well as your potential purchases. With this tool, you can see how well your watch list is doing. For example, I just recently read a great book by Joel Greenblatt in which he discusses his “Magic Formula” for picking stocks. After reading about this I decided to test it out myself and set a watch list based on his formula so I can see for myself how it performs. And so far it has done pretty well considering the market has been a little sideways for most of the year.

Idea generators

Value Investors Club

This is a site run by Joel Greenblatt that features the detailed analysis of different companies. The site has a free version that allows you to see data that is 45 days old. There is a paid version that allows you to see everything real time. To enroll you need to present one detailed original idea for a company to invest in.

The one thing that makes this site so useful is that you can see some great stock picks with amazing detailed analysis. This information can help you decide if that particular company is worth doing some more digging into. Plus it can also open your eyes to some companies you might have never thought of or given any thought to before. Very useful site and I highly recommend you check it out.

This list is by no means complete and will continue to grow as I grow and learn. None of the tools or sites mentioned here should be a sole means of making a decision to purchase a company. They are meant to be a starting point of analysis on the road to making that decision. Never just find one stock you like and decide their balance sheet is great I am going to buy, or that their stock price falls to the price you were looking for. Without understanding the whole picture you are asking for trouble and this can lead to some big losses that you might not be able to recover from. 

If you have any favorites or tools that you like to use, by all means, please let me know. I am always looking for different sites or tools that I can use to help me find and make better decisions.