Copied from another board. I don't have a link but it is interesting anyways.....
BEFORE YOU BUY AN OTC PENNY STOCK
There are several key areas to look at when doing DD on an Over-the-counter pennystock. And it doesn't even include looking at the financial information.. . that is the least important thing to look at.
Share structure and distribution is the FIRST place our eyes should go when looking at an OTC stock. Don't even READ the news until you know whether or not 5 million shares were sold at .005 to a company in the Cayman Islands.
If so, you can rest assured that there will be heavy selling on any run up, as each new buy is met with an insider sell. And the stock will probably then get heavily shorted near the top. . and driven down to nothing. . and I do mean NOTHING.
And if the company does not report their financials to the SEC. . .RUN AWAY. Don't even consider them, because they will surely rip you off any way that they can. And if they SAY that they will soon be reporting their "audited" financials. . .run even faster. . .this means they have NO INTENTION of filing with the SEC. And even if they say "we will be filing with the SEC" or even "we HAVE submitted our financials to the SEC." DON'T BELIEVE THEM.
MDCE put out a half dozen press releases telling shareholders that they filed their financials with the SEC. . .but somehow. . .as if by magic. . .they have never appeared on the Edgars.
This stuff is the BASICS of penny trading.
SECOND, look at the HISTORY of the stock. . .was there a reverse split or reverse merger in its past? If so, there will probably be more problems or more reverse splits in the future. How long has the company been in business? It is one thing for a company to come up with an idea. . .it is CLEARLY another for same company to figure out a way to successfully market that product or service. . . and it is another thing yet, for the company to properly manage their money.
Take down the names of the officers of the companies, the investor relations people or firm and any other important parties. . .and do a "entire website" search at the SEC. This is not an Edgar search. . and can be found on the main page of the SEC, which EVERY penny trader should know very well. If your party comes up in the search, you can know their history. . if not, it does not mean they are "clear". . .they still could be under investigation or have played a smaller role in other scams, etc. . . .or just have never been caught. Be UN-trusting as a defense to loss and you will increase your chance at gains.
The easy way to do searches on SEC is to use "adj" between names like
John Smith. . ."john adj smith" . . if it is an odd last name, it should be fine by itself. . "stephanapolous" or "gianapolitana" or "santodominguez" etc. . .otherwise use adj on firm names like "La Jolla adj Capital" or "La adj Jolla adj Capital" . . this will keep the thousands of uses of "capital" or the city "La Jolla" from coming up in the search. It means literally adjacent" words.
THIRD, read the press releases with a cynical eye. . . if they say that the industry is reported to generate 14 billion in revenues each year and we estimate that our revenues in the coming year will be between 40 million and 60 million dollars. . .. RUN away.
If there is no LOGICAL and detailed explanation of HOW the company plans to make ANY money. . .then they don't. . . they just plan to sell shares. . to you? . . hopefully NO. . to the suckers that don't have a clue what they are doing. ANY reports of "projected" revenues should be based on PRIOR performance. . .if not, it is just a pie-in-the-sky arbitrary number picked out to make them look good to prospective penny traders.
If the company headquarters is in Vancouver, Boca Raton, La Jolla, Denver or Las Vegas. . . . RUN AWAY. There is an old saying in the record biz, where thousands of demo tapes are sent every week. . . "if we reject 100 percent of those wanting a record deal, we will be correct in our decision 99 percent of the time. . .and that ain't bad"
By catagorically denying ANY company hailing from these cities, thus rejecting 100 percent of them. . .we will be correct in our decision 99 percent of the time. And that is not bad.
Other suspect cities, which would require EXTENSIVE DD to justify,include New York City, Dallas, Houston, Palm Springs or other cities of the Coachella Valley, Ft. Lauderdale or other cities in South Florida, any city in Nevada, ANY city in Canada where everyone can short-sell penny stocks, any other "resort" city. . .
If Gucci has a store there. . .then chances are your company does not operate a 50,000 square foot building in the same town. . but rather is just one of many operations out of a small office there.
FOURTH. .INVESTIGATE. . . A good way to find out about the company? CALL THEM. NO, I don't mean to call the number they provide you. . .I mean call the local area directory assistance and ask for the company name. . . I have even gone as far as asked for the numbers of each of the officers of suspect companies, only to find that NOBODY had a listed number. . not even the company.
If the company has an unlisted number. . .think about it. . their customers or clients will not be able to find them. . they are absolutely bogus. If the CEO or his wife answers. .or there is a baby crying in the background. . .guess what? The company is being run out of the kitchen table of a house, and they want your money. . .why?
There are bills that need paid, that's why.
Another good trick, is to offer to visit the company headquarters on
short notice. . .say something like I will be in town first thing in the morning and would like directions to the company headquarters, so you can report back to your thread on Silicon Investor. . .yes they all read our threads.
If they say the company is moving, under construction or give ANY reason whatsoever for not allowing you there. . . you have your answer. . they are bogus. .don't believe them. . .if they offer to meet you elsewhere or to guide you in. . . decline and say, you may be late and insist on getting precise directions to the company headquarters. You will be amazed at the number of companies that will refuse to tell you.
If you are still interested in the company at this point. . .then you must ask yourself how much you are willing to lose. . . if you are "investing" 2,000 or more dollars, then go to Southwest Airlines website on a Tuesday thru Thursday and book a 33 to 99 dollar "internet special" flight there and go and see them for yourself. For just a same day trip. . or overnight if you feel adventurous. . .for just a few hundred bucks. . you can get a first hand account of where your money is going.
If they sell goods. . .you want to see the warehouse, shipping, receiving department. . .it should be impressive. . even if it is tiny. . if they sell services. . you want to see the laborers performing these services. . .if the company is nothing more than a small office with no laborers, because they "farm out" or their workers work "out of their homes" . . .RUN away. That is a lie. . the company is in business just to sell shares. In which case, be sure to note the leather interior of the CEO's car. . because that is what your 2,000 bucks bought.
Note the name or names on the door. Instead of the company name, does it say "capital.. .equity. . .investor. . .relations. . .financial". . etc??? Do
you know why? Because they operate NUMEROUS companies from the same office. . . in which case, your presence is not only NOT WANTED. . .it is threatening to their livelyhood.
If that is the case, I would not bother to even enter, as it may be a potentially dangerous or threatening situation. . . I would turn around and never look back.
But here is the part of penny trading that is the most important of all.. .and what I expect from each of us here on the fishing thread. . . when you have information about these companies like that described above. . and someone else is getting suckered into the same company. . . have the decency to tell them.
You don't need to go on the thread and tell eveyone they are invested in a bogus company. . .chances are good that they have already figured that out. . . but in the course of daily discussion, when the name pops up. . and you can shed some light. . do not hold back.
If they were unlisted. . say so. . if they have convertible debentures from an offshore placement. . say so. . .if there was a 1 for 100 reverse split a year ago. . .say so . . etc etc etc.
Not every company on the OTC or the Nasdaq is bogus.. . . but as I said on the Scammy Awards:
Welcome to the Over-The-Counter market of Electronic Bulletin Board and Pink Sheet stocks.
Out of 100,000 issues,
90,000 are scammys
9,000 are clueless
900 are really trying
Leaving 100 that are worth buying.