I am a fairly conservative investor. I like companies with an established track record who engage in a business that can be summed up in one simple sentence. I look at the numbers, I take a consensus of varied metrics on how to value a company's stock, and if it's a company that primarily makes it's money from consumer sales I look at how they treat their customers and how reliable their products are, as well as viewer/consumer comments, which as an aggregate tell you a lot about a company's chances for success. I look at historical data like how they did when the market crashed in 2009, and I look at their balance sheet, especially their ROIC and P/E numbers. The stock market is an emotional environment, and stock prices rise and fall based on two emotions: greed and fear. I try not to give in to either of those when making investment choices.