Such initial steps usually end up with a loss of the invested capital - either because the entry is at an inopportune time, or the stocks selected are of the cheaper/riskier variety, or both.
For the novice investor, the better way to start investing in the stock market is to select a couple of good equity and balanced funds and invest regularly - leaving stock selection to experienced fund managers.
At some point of time however - may be two or three years down the road - it may be a good idea to start selecting your own stocks.
Why? Because fund managers tend to have a herd-like mentality - selecting from the same group of well-researched stocks for different funds. That leads to steady but average returns.
For above-average returns, one needs to select a few mid-cap and small-cap stocks for a 'satellite portfolio' - along with a 'core portfolio' of large-cap stocks.
Selecting under-researched mid-cap and small-cap stocks is not a trivial task. It requires knowledge and experience to choose from thousands of listed companies.
So, where should one start? Look for three essential characteristics that make a company successful. These are:
1) Barriers to entry
2) Management quality
3) Market leadership
What about other important metrics like Profit Margin, P/E, P/BV, RoE, Debt/Equity ratio, Interest Coverage ratio, Cash Flow, Growth rate and so forth? Those need to be looked at also for a more detailed study and analysis.
Learn more about the '3 Secrets of Successful Companies'.
How to Increase your stock market Returns - be an Investor and a Speculator at the same time