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Common Stocks and Uncommon Profits, by Philip Fisher.    Phil Fisher and Benjamin Graham were the most powerful intellectual influences on the development of Warren Buffett's investment philosophy.  Buffett is sometimes more closely identified as Graham's student; however, as anyone who has read both Fisher and Buffett can observe, Fisher's ideas have had a profound impact on Buffett.  (They have also influenced Charlie Munger, Buffett's business partner).  Graham articulated the famous "margin of safety" concept, but his relatively quantitative approach to stock selection was more suited to the investment environment of the 1930s, when numerous stocks were statistically very cheap.  (The first edition of Graham and Dodd's Security Analysis was published in 1934.)  However, in later years, as intelligent investment selection became more challenging than shooting fish in a barrel, the Fisher approach of careful and detailed qualitative analysis became more important and useful.  In this 1958 work Fisher describes his famous "scuttlebutt" research methods, which he used to focus his research efforts on a limited number of very high quality companies with enduring competitive advantages--just like Buffett does today.  It is no exaggeration to say that in the world of investment literature this book is a true classic.

ISBN: 047111927X
Format: Paperback, 271pp
Pub. Date: June 1996
Publisher: John Wiley & Sons

 

 

 

 

"I sought out Phil Fisher after reading his Common Stocks and Uncommon Profits and Other Works.  When I met him, I was as impressed by the man as his ideas."

Warren E. Buffett