How Scuttlebutt Investing Works

The Scuttlebutt method of investing is fathered by the legendary investor Phil Fisher. Fisher is likely most known for his bestselling book Common Stocks & Uncommon Profits.

Scuttlebutt investing, as the name indicates, begins with a story or some other anecdotal data point, that triggers interest. It might be a product you love, a competitor you hate because of her competence.

How to Practice the Scuttlebutt Method

This is just the starting point, though. You have a hunch. You might be on to something, but what’s the next step? Do you check the performance of the stock price, do you download the financial statements and start crunching numbers?

If you are a Scuttlebutt Investor, your research would be very hands-on. You might visit retail locations or even manufacturing facilities. You would get feedback from customers, resellers or even competitors. You would try to understand the competitive dynamics of the market, performing the Silver Bullet Test on the people you would talk to.

Following up with Fundamental Research 

The Scuttlebutt Method is great to validate investment ideas and building an intuitive understanding of the operational and brand-related qualities of a potential investment. Nonetheless, once you have strengthened your conviction about a certain stock, what you want to do is to cross-validate your finding with a fundamental analysis of the financial statements of the company.

This will give you a clearer picture of the business model and allows you to compare your scuttlebutt data points with the overall financial and valuation picture.

Published by

Gísli Eyland

There are just too many interesting things going on

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