Wouldn't it be great if Wall Street (search) sent out smoke signals? White if it's time to buy. Black if it's time to stay away. Wouldn't investing be a lot more divine?
But picking a good stock doesn't seem nearly as easy as picking a good pope (search). I just have one question: Why? Why do we make it so complicated?
We know the qualities the cardinals want in the next pope: He must be decent and inspiring — others can quibble whether he should be more liberal or conservative. What's clear is that he should ooze integrity.
Good stocks are the same.
They must represent companies that ooze integrity and decency and consistency — in earnings and in ethics.
A good company proves itself over time, by not playing games, but very much playing by the rules.
Indeed, it's a cardinal rule among great companies: Stick to doing right by investors and investors will do right by you.
Such companies don't win over the fast-buck artists. But they have an art for winning over the rest of us over time.
Cardinals have a thing for lasting value. If we could see through the smoke and mirrors on Wall Street, we should too.
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Neil Cavuto serves as senior vice president, anchor and managing editor for both FOX News Channel (FNC) and FOX Business Network (FBN). He is anchor of FNC's Your World with Cavuto - the number one rated cable news program for the 4 p.m. timeslot - as well as the FNC Saturday show Cavuto on Business. He also hosts Cavuto on FBN weeknights at 8 p.m. In addition to anchoring daily programs and breaking news specials on FNC and FBN, Cavuto oversees business news content for both networks and FNC's weekend business shows, including Bulls & Bears, Forbes on Fox, and Cashin' In. Click here for more on Neil Cavuto.