by CI Staff
$9.99/mo., $49.99 for 6 mos., $89.99/yr.
Proprietary ratings and data on over 2,700 ETFs, stocks and closed-end funds.
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The analysts at AAII are paid to roll up our sleeves and kick the tires of companies. That’s our job and we have the training and experience to do it. The average investor doesn’t have the time or expertise (or don’t think they do) to analyze individual companies. That is one reason why mutual funds are so popular. They eliminate the work required to construct a diversified portfolio. This is another reason why investors flock to sites such as Morningstar.com and Zacks.com to get analyst ratings on individual stocks or funds.
In the mobile arena, apps are popping up that offer proprietary, block box rating systems on stocks and mutual funds. One of them is Best Stocks Now from Gunderson Capital Management. The firm was founded by Bill Gunderson, who is a professional money manager, former research analyst, author and app developer. Gunderson has also been published in Barron's, Forbes, TheStreet.com and other publications.
Unlike many of the apps we cover, this is a fee-based app. You can download and install the app and get limited access for free. However, for unlimited viewing of the ratings on 2,700+ stocks and ETFs, you have to subscribe. Fees range from $9.99 a month to $89.99 a year. There are iOS and Android versions of the app, but we used it on an iPad 2.
For this article, we simply looked at what it offers and cannot vouch for the performance of the app’s highest-rated issues.
When you first install the app and open it, you have an array of menu options, first of which is the ability to subscribe. Subscribing through the iOS app bills you through the Apple Store.
The other menu options include an overview of how to use Best Stocks Now as well as access to Gunderson’s website, daily radio show, weekly newsletter, books, Twitter feed and articles.
Also, along the bottom of the app windows are five buttons: Best (the “homepage”), Stocks, Sectors, Dow and Search.
The heart of the Best Stocks Now app is Gunderson’s proprietary rating system.
On a daily basis, Gunderson evaluates the stocks and funds in his universe based on performance and upside potential. He begins by analyzing performance (short-, intermediate- and long-term) and assigns a proprietary momentum grade and an overall performance grade.
Then, based on earnings estimates, he calculates his own five-year price target to estimate the potential upside.
Lastly, he evaluates how the stock or fund performed during the 2008 market meltdown.
Based on this information, each stock and fund in the universe is assigned an overall Gunderson Grade. When considering growth stocks, Gunderson only considers those with an A- grade or better. For value or income-oriented issues, he looks for stocks or funds with a B+ rating or better.
Individual Issue Data
When you select an individual stock or fund within the app, you are taken to its data screen. Here, you will find basic information such as sector, market cap, size and risk profile.
The rest of the page is divided into four sections: Valuation, Gunderson Value Grade, Performance and Gunderson Stock Grade.
The Valuation section contains the latest closing price, next year’s earnings per share estimate, forward P/E ratio, estimated five-year earnings growth rate, PEG ratio, five-year target price, dividend yield and five-year total return potential. Based on this underlying data, Gunderson assigns a Value Grade.
The Performance section offers a variety of total return measures: one-, three- and 12-month returns; average three-, five- and 10-year total returns; 2013 year-to-date total return; and 2008 total return. Using this data, Gunderson calculates a Momentum Grade, Performance Grade and Safety Grade.
Gunderson then merges these individual grades into the overall Gunderson Stock Grade as well as the issue’s current ranking in the universe, its ranking one and seven days ago and its ranking one, two and three months ago.
Going to the Stocks page, you can filter for stocks by company name, Gunderson Grade, market cap, ranking or risk profile.
The company listings are in alphabetical order and the Gunderson Grade for each issue is also provided on the list.
When searching by Gunderson Grade, the universe is divided up by letter grade. The app also divides up the universe by market capitalization, micro-cap to mega-cap, with seven subdivisions in between. The universe is divided into 300-ticker lots based on their overall ranking. Lastly, the app divides the universe into risk profile groups: aggressive, conservative, growth & income, income, moderate and speculative.
The Best Stocks Now Sectors page allows you to view the issues in each of the app’s 36 sector classifications, ranked by their Gunderson Grade. Here, you will also find ratings for over 25 indexes and index ETFs. Lastly, the app gives the overall rating for each sector.
The Dow page lists the 30 stocks in the Dow Jones industrial average.
For someone looking for proprietary stock ratings, this may be an app worth looking at. We couldn’t find any backtesting data to back up the performance of the highest-graded issues, namely because the app hasn’t been around long enough to develop a track record. Gunderson does have standing in the industry, so this isn’t a fly-by-night operation. The strength of the app is definitely the ratings. If you are looking for individual stock data, this isn’t the app for you.
$9.99/mo., $49.99 for 6 mos., $89.99/yr.