It can be difficult to manage a successful portfolio without research and an outlook, or forecast, for the market. Ken Fisher, of Fisher Investments, wrote The Only Three Questions That Count to help investors learn how to research and think critically to help improve their portfolio decision-making. Without research, it’s difficult to make investment decisions for your portfolio.

The Only Three Questions That Count explains some of Fisher Investments’ research methods in detail. In the book, Ken Fisher explains to readers the importance of thinking critically about portfolio decisions. He explores three questions that he believes investors should consider when doing portfolio research—all generally focusing on the idea that successful investors must identify how their brain may be misleading them. When it comes to actual portfolio decisions, Ken believes investors should try to identify factors or trends that have otherwise gone unnoticed. Through this research, it may be possible to interpret these factors differently and perhaps gain an advantage.

Fisher Investments' Stock Market Outlook

Fisher Investments releases a quarterly report containing its market forecast and observations—the Stock Market Outlook. This report is available for qualified investors interested in learning more about Fisher Investments’ portfolio management services.

Resources from Fisher Investments

Data on economic indicators is free and published by government agencies. It can be easily accessed at some of the following locations:

  • The Federal Reserve: Interest rates, money supply, flow of funds (FederalReserve.gov)
  • Bureau of Economic Analysis: GDP, Current Account Balance (BEA.gov)
  • National Bureau of Economic Research: Official business cycles (NBER.org)
  • Bureau of Labor Statistics: CPI, consumer spending, productivity, employment (BLS.gov)
  • US Census Bureau: New home sales, housing starts, homeownership, household income, poverty, trade data: manufacturing, retail, inventories, etc. (Census.gov)
  • Office of Management and Budget: US Budget data (Whitehouse.gov/omb)
  • US Treasury (Treas.gov)
  • Department of Commerce (Commerce.gov)
  • The Conference Board (Conference-Board.gov)
  • Congressional Budget Office (CBO.gov)

Note: Government data takes longer to aggregate and finalize, much longer than market data. Data for a period can take a month to a quarter to become available. You can usually find a release calendar on the website. Even after preliminary figures have been issued, they may be revised a year later. This should not come as a shock if your historical data needs to be restated.
For these reasons we may commonly dismiss such data to have any weight in interpreting market action, particularly in hindsight. The market generally leads the economy by 6-12 months.