VALUATION: Approaches for Common Stocks


By Dr. David Edward Marcinko MBA CMP™

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QUESTION: We are in near bear market correction territory – especially for tech stocks – so what are the 2 major types of valuation approaches for common stock?



ANSWER: There are basically two different approaches for common stock valuation; top-down and bottom-up.  Under either of the two fundamental approaches, a physician investor will have to work with individual company data.  In reality, each of these approaches is used by investors and security analysts when doing fundamental analysis.  


With the bottom-up approach, investors focus directly on a company’s prospects. Analysis of such information as the company’s products, its competitive position, and its financial status leads to an estimate of the company’s earnings potential, and, ultimately, its value in the market.  Considerable time and effort are required to produce the type of detailed financial analysis needed to understand a firm’s standing. The emphasis in this approach is on finding companies with good long-term growth prospects, and making accurate earnings estimates. 

The top-down approach is the opposite of the bottom-up approach. Investors begin with the economy and the overall market, considering such important factors as interest rates and inflation. They next consider likely industry prospects, or sectors of the economy that are likely to do particularly well (or particularly poorly). Finally, having decided that factors are favorable for investing, and having determined which parts of the overall economy are likely to perform well, individual companies are analyzed.



Thank You

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