Although it is virtually impossible to anticipate short-term stock price swings, certain longer-term trends are much more evident. For example, if all you knew about a stock was its price/earnings ratio (P/E), it turns out you could take advantage of that information. There are always some exceptions to even the most useful generalizations, but based on decades of stock market history, the future performance of the lowest P/E stocks is likely to be better than the future performance of medium P/E stocks, which is likely to be better than the future performance of the highest P/E stocks. Simply put, low P/E stocks (sometimes referred to as “value” stocks) taken as a group typically perform better over the long term. If that’s all you know about investing, you’re off to a good start.