Philip A. Fisher Quotes

Why should I know Philip A. Fisher?

Philip Arthur Fisher was an American stock investor best known as the author of 'Common Stocks and Uncommon Profits', a guide to investing.

Born September 08, 1907
Died March 11, 2004

Books by Philip A. Fisher


Best 61 Quotes by Philip A. Fisher

“A large company’s need to bring in a new chief executive from the outside is a damning sign of something basically wrong with the existing management.”

Philip A. Fisher

“As a stock rises to, say, 50 or 60 or 70, the urge to sell and take a profit now that the stock is high becomes irresistible to many people. Giving in to this urge can be very costly. This is because the genuinely worthwhile profits in stock investing have come from holding the surprisingly large number of stocks that have gone up many times from their original cost.”

Philip A. Fisher
Common Stocks and Uncommon Profits

“Be extra careful when buying into companies and industries that are the current darlings of the financial community.”

Philip A. Fisher

“Buying a company without having sufficient knowledge of it may be even more dangerous than having inadequate diversification.”

Philip A. Fisher

“Companies that have failed to go uphill have invariably gone downhill.”

Philip A. Fisher

“Conservative investors sleep well.”

Philip A. Fisher

“Don’t assume that the high price at which a stock may be selling in relation to its earnings is necessarily an indication that further growth in those earnings has largely been already discounted in the price?”

Philip A. Fisher

“Don’t be afraid of buying on a war scare.”

Philip A. Fisher

“Don’t follow the crowd.”

Philip A. Fisher

“Don’t overstress diversification.”

Philip A. Fisher

“Even in those earlier times, finding the really outstanding companies and staying with them through all the fluctuations of a gyrating market proved far more profitable to far more people than did the more colorful practice of trying to buy them cheap and sell them dear.”

Philip A. Fisher
Common Stocks and Uncommon Profits

“Every significant price move of any individual common stock in relation to stocks as a whole occurs because of a changed appraisal of that stock by the financial community.”

Philip A. Fisher

“Finding out which physician had lost the smallest percentage of his practice through death would not be a good way to pick a superb doctor.”

Philip A. Fisher

“For the great majority of transactions, being stubborn about a tiny fractional difference in the price can prove extremely costly.”

Philip A. Fisher

“Forecasting is like trying to turn lead into gold.”

Philip A. Fisher

“Go to five companies in an industry, ask each of them intelligent questions about the points of strength and weakness of the other four, and nine times out of ten a surprisingly detailed and accurate picture of all five will emerge.”

Philip A. Fisher

“He should take extreme care to own not the most, but the best.”

Philip A. Fisher

“History has shown that in every age and in every field of human knowledge, many of the views which almost everyone accepted as true and never bothered to think about further, were in time proven completely wrong.”

Philip A. Fisher

“I don’t want a lot of good investments; I want a few outstanding ones.”

Philip A. Fisher

“I had made what I believe was one of the more valuable decisions of my business life. This was to confine all efforts solely to making major gains in the long-run.”

Philip A. Fisher

“I have already made up my mind, don't confuse me with facts.”

Philip A. Fisher

“If the growth rate is so good that in another ten years the company might well have quadrupled, is it really of such great concern whether at the moment the stock might or might not be 35% overpriced?”

Philip A. Fisher

“If the job has been correctly done when a common stock is purchased, the time to sell it is – almost never.”

Philip A. Fisher

“If you can’t do a thing better than others are doing it, don’t do it at all.”

Philip A. Fisher

“In a new plant for even established processes or products, there will probably be a shake-down period of six to eight weeks that will prove rather expensive. It takes this long to get the equipment adjusted to the required operating efficiency and to weed out the inevitable "bugs" that seem to occur in breaking in modern intricate machinery.”

Philip A. Fisher
Common Stocks and Uncommon Profits

“In the competitive world of commerce it is vital to make the potential customer aware of the advantages of a product or service. This awareness can be created only by understanding what the potential buyer really wants and explaining it to him not in the seller’s terms but in his terms.”

Philip A. Fisher
Common Stocks and Uncommon Profits

“In the field of common stocks, a little bit of a great many can never be more than a poor substitute for a few of the outstanding.”

Philip A. Fisher

“In the stock market a good nervous system is even more important than a good head.”

Philip A. Fisher

“In what other line of activity could you put $10,000 in one year and ten years later (with only occasional checking in the meantime to be sure management continues of high caliber) be able to have an asset worth from $40,000 to $150,000?”

Philip A. Fisher

“Investors have been so oversold on diversification that fear of having too many eggs in one basket has caused them to put far too little into companies they thoroughly know and far too much in others which they know nothing about.”

Philip A. Fisher

“It is my observation that those who sell such stocks to wait for a more suitable time to buy back these same shares seldom attain their objective. They usually wait for a decline to be bigger than it actually turns out to be.”

Philip A. Fisher

“It is not the profit margins of the past but those of the future that are basically important to the investor.”

Philip A. Fisher

“Long term investors best stay away from low profit-margin or marginal companies.”

Philip A. Fisher

“More money has probably been lost by investors holding a stock they really did not want until they could ‘at least come out even’ than from any other single reason. If to these actual losses are added the profits that might have been made through the proper reinvestment of these funds if such reinvestment had been made when the mistake was first realized, the cost of self-indulgence becomes truly tremendous.”

Philip A. Fisher

“My mistake was to project my skill beyond the limits of experience. I began investing outside the industries which I believe I thoroughly understood, in completely different spheres of activity, situations where I did not have comparable background knowledge.”

Philip A. Fisher

“None of us likes to admit to himself that he has been wrong.”

Philip A. Fisher

“Nothing is worth doing unless it is worth doing right.”

Philip A. Fisher

“Patience is needed if big profits are to be made from investment. It is often easier to tell what will happen to the price of a stock than how much time will elapse before it happens.”

Philip A. Fisher
Common Stocks and Uncommon Profits

“Paying a fancy price for something… because of too favorable interpretation of basic facts, is the investment fad of the moment.”

Philip A. Fisher

“Postponing an attractive purchase because of fear of what the general market might do will, over the years, prove very costly. This is because the investor is ignoring a powerful influence about which he has positive knowledge through fear of a less powerful force about which, in the present state of human knowledge, he and everyone else is largely guessing.”

Philip A. Fisher
Common Stocks and Uncommon Profits

“Practical investors usually learn their problem is finding enough outstanding investments, rather than choosing among too many.”

Philip A. Fisher

“Recognizing changes in public taste and then reacting promptly to these changes is not enough. In the business world customers simply do not beat a path to the door of the man with the better mousetrap.”

Philip A. Fisher
Common Stocks and Uncommon Profits

“Such a study indicates that the greatest investment reward comes to those who by good luck or good sense find the occasional company that over the years can grow in sales and profits far more than industry as a whole. It further shows that when we believe we have found such a company we had better stick with it for a long period of time. It gives us a strong hint that such companies need not necessarily be young and small. Instead, regardless of size, what really counts is a management having both a determination to attain further important growth and an ability to bring its plans to completion.”

Philip A. Fisher
Common Stocks and Uncommon Profits

“The ability to see through some majority opinions to find what facts are really there is a trait that can bring rich rewards in the field of common stocks. It is not easy to develop, however, for the composite opinion of those with whom we associate is a powerful influence upon the minds of all of us.”

Philip A. Fisher

“The company that doesn’t pioneer, doesn’t take chances, and merely goes along with the crowd is liable to prove a rather mediocre investment in this highly competitive age.”

Philip A. Fisher

“The disadvantage of having eggs in so many baskets that a lot of eggs do not end up in really attractive baskets, and it is impossible to keep watching all the baskets after the eggs are put in.”

Philip A. Fisher

“The heart of successful investing is knowing how to find the minority of stocks that in the years ahead will have spectacular growth in their per-share earnings.”

Philip A. Fisher

“The more successful the corporation, the more likely it is to be unique in some of its policies.”

Philip A. Fisher

“The only true test of whether a stock is cheap or high is not its current price in relation to some former price, but whether the company’s fundamentals are significantly more or less favorable than the current financial-community appraisal of that stock.”

Philip A. Fisher
Common Stocks and Uncommon Profits

“The reason why the growth stocks do so much better is that they seem to show gains in value in the hundreds of per cent each decade. In contrast, it is an unusual bargain that is as much as 50 per cent undervalued. The cumulative effect of this simple arithmetic should be obvious.”

Philip A. Fisher

“The stock market has an inherently deceptive nature. Doing what everybody else is doing at the moment, and therefore what you have an almost irresistible urge to do, is often the wrong thing to do at all.”

Philip A. Fisher
Common Stocks and Uncommon Profits

“The stock market is filled with individuals who know the price of everything, but the value of nothing.”

Philip A. Fisher

“The successful investor is usually an individual who is inherently interested in business problems.”

Philip A. Fisher

“The true investment objective of growth is not just to make gains but to avoid loss.”

Philip A. Fisher

“The wise investor can profit if he can think independently of the crowd and reach the rich answer when the majority of financial opinion is leaning the other way.”

Philip A. Fisher

“There are fads and styles in the stock market just as there are in women’s clothes.”

Philip A. Fisher

“There is a complicating factor that makes the handling of investment mistakes more difficult. This is the ego in each of us.”

Philip A. Fisher

“This matter of training oneself not to go with the crowd but to be able to zig when the crowd zags, in my opinion, is one of the most important fundamentals of investment success.”

Philip A. Fisher

“Usually a very long list of securities is not a sign of the brilliant investor, but of one who is unsure of himself.”

Philip A. Fisher

“What is most important is that stocks are not bought in companies where the dividend pay-out is so emphasized that it restricts realizable growth.”

Philip A. Fisher

“When profit margins of a whole industry rise because of repeated price increases, the indication is not a good one for the long-range investor.”

Philip A. Fisher