How much does the company sell and earn?
Investors need to know the quantity of goods or services a company sells, and how much of that total it keeps as income (or profit) to grow its business or return to shareholders. The more of each, the better. In general, look for companies that sell and earn more than their peers.
How fast is the company growing?
How profitable is the company?
Investors prefer companies that increase profit margins -- the percentage of sales that they keep -- every year. This is accomplished either by lowering expenses or raising prices. Look for companies that consistently find ways to squeeze more profits out of sales than their peers.
How is the company's financial health?
The debt/equity ratio shows how much a firm has borrowed long-term as a percentage of its stock equity. The lower, the better.