Born: Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, in 1933
Affiliations:
  • Hayden, Stone & Company
  • William O\'Neil & Company, Inc.
  • O\'Neil Data Systems, Inc.
  • Investor\'s Business Daily
Most Famous For: Bill O\'Neil is a top-performing stock broker, inventor of the growth stock investing strategy, CANSLIM, author and founder of the national financial newspaper, Investor\'s Business Daily, which competes with The Wall Street Journal.

Personal Profile
Bill O'Neil majored in business administration at Southern Methodist University, receiving a Bachelor of Arts degree in 1955. After military service, he started his career as a stockbroker with Hayden, Stone & Company in 1958, and developed an investment strategy (CANSLIM), which made him the highest performing broker in his firm.
His professional and financial successes lead him to form a brokerage firm, the William O'Neil & Co., Inc, in 1963. At 30 years old,he became the youngest person to buy a seat on the New York Stock Exchange.

In 1983, he founded a national financial daily newspaper called Investor's Daily, which became the Investor's Business Daily in 1991. As of 2007, he serves as CEO of William O'Neil & Co., is the chairman and publisher of the Investor's Business Daily, and lectures and writes on investment topics nationwide.

Investment Style
O'Neil blends a mixture of quantitative and qualitative strategies in his performance-oriented investing approach. In brief, his investment style is to seek out only those growth stocks that have the greatest potential for swift price rises from the moment they are purchased.

Essentially, Bill O'Neil's motto is "buy the strong, sell the weak." His criteria for identifying a stock that's about to head for the stratosphere are summarized in his well-known acronym CANSLIM:

C – Current quarterly earnings per share have increased sharply from the same quarters' earnings reported in the prior year (at least 25%).

A – Annual earnings increases at a compound rate of no less than 25% (P/E is unimportant – probably in the range of 20 to 45 with these stocks) annually over the last five years.

N – New products, new management, and new highs. Stocks with a good "story."

S – Supply and demand. The less stock available, the more buying will drive up the price. Look for stocks with 10 to 12 million shares outstanding.

L – Leaders and laggards. Stick with those stocks that outperform and shed those that underperform.

I – Institutional ownership. Favor companies that are "underowned" by the top professional investors. (For related reading, see Institutional Investors And Fundamentals: What's The Link?)

M – Market direction. Buy stocks on major downturns, but avoid purchases after a decline of 10% or more gets underway.




Publications

  • " How To Make Money In Stocks" by William J. O'Neil(1988).
  • "24 Essential Lessons For Investment Success" by William J. O'Neil (1999).
  • "The Successful Investor" by William J. O'Neil(2003).

Quotes

"Since the market tends to go in the opposite direction of what the majority of people think, I would say 95% of all these people you hear on TV shows are giving you their personal opinion. And personal opinions are almost always worthless … facts and markets are far more reliable."

"The whole secret to winning and losing in the stock market is to lose the least amount possible when you're not right."

"What seems too high and risky to the majority generally goes higher and what seems low and cheap generally goes lower."


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