Investing: Tasty Little Guys

Big brokerages are paying less notice to small stocks--just as they're starting to jump again

Wall Street analysts are not exactly an endangered species. But their numbers are in steep decline, and that's great news on two levels: it's wonderful payback for all the bogus advice many of them gave in the late '90s, and more important, it offers new advantages for investors who like to fish for bargains among the stocks of small companies.

Fewer analysts means less stock research on small companies (market value under $1 billion), no matter how good the companies may be. If you know a good thing when you see it--say, among firms whose products and services you have used...

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