In this article we look at the fundamentals behind stock prices and why the P/E ratio is not perhaps the best indicator.
I use the P/E ratio as a secondary indicator for buying and selling stocks but I don’t use the ratio in the same a manner as many value investors teach. I will explain the difference in my methodology for using the P/E ratio to your advantage.
Many value investors will pass on a growth stock that has a P/E ratio higher than a predetermined level. For example, they may discard all stocks that have a ratio of 15 or higher, no matter what industry group they come from. Some investors will discard any stocks that have P/E ratios above the industry group averages, concluding that they are grossly overvalued. I am not saying that this method doesn’t work, because it does but it will not work when you focus on buying young innovative small cap stocks that are growing at tremendous rates, rates that "big caps" can no longer sustain.
I have never passed on buying a stock...
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