While Wall Street myopically focuses on a few numbers, like revenue, earnings, and price-to-earnings, you would be better off following another metric. Since companies -- especially tech ones -- thrive on the profits they earn from innovate products and services, you would be better off understanding how research and development spending relates to a company's profitability.
In the video below, Fool contributor Kevin Chen reveals the one metric every investor should know. He also walks you through how you can use this metric to inform your buy or sell thesis for IBM (NYSE: IBM ) , Baidu (NASDAQ: BIDU ) , Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL ) , Google (NASDAQ: GOOGL ) , and Nokia (NYSE: NOK ) .
It's incredible to think just how much of our digital and technological lives are almost entirely shaped and molded by just a handful of innovative companies. Find out "Who Will Win the War Between the 5 Biggest Tech Stocks?" in The Motley Fool's latest free report, which details the knock-down, drag-out battle being waged by the five kings of tech. Click here to keep reading.