A list of my core subscriptions to publications and services that I read and use very regularly.
Bloomberg – Easy to read and has outstanding graphics. A great way to get the main news of the markets. I don’t think you need to pay for this one, use the free edition and just sign up 2 or 3 email accounts to get your allotment of free monthly articles.
Financial Times – International and company coverage is outstanding. Probably the most useful for global investors. The basic subscription with Saturday delivery is awesome. I don’t pay for Lex, he’s a bit worn out. If you leave one out due to time or budget constraints, this is probably the one to leave out, especially if you can find a way to get WSJ/Barrons on student rates.
Wall Street Journal – A daily read of WSJ is mandatory for a lot of folks. Ignore some of the extreme editorials and you’ll get a lot out of it. You can get summarized articles on MarketWatch.com for most of the important content. See Barron’s below on how to get it cheap. Here’s a link for Kindle users that makes it less expensive than Bloomberg or Financial Times.
Barron’s – Great special reports and inside looks. Subscribe along with WSJ for a big discount. Or better yet, find a college student in the family, subscribe on your card, then give them a few bucks and dinner. The student deal is outstanding and it’s a good way to be able to help somebody younger with finances.
ValueWalk – The information you can get from what hedge funds and institutions are doing is extremely insightful. If you want to know what the smartest kids in the room are doing, this is the service for you. Sure, some hedge funds suck, but read the letters from the right hedge funds and you can improve your investment performance. It’s a great way to get a lot of viewpoints from smart people, something that Ray Dalio (runs the world’s biggest hedge fund anda billionaire investor) says is pretty important. Surround yourself with smart people and listen. For the money, I don’t think there’s anything more valuable. Click here or use code “Kirk15” to get 15% off.
Global Analysis & Macro
Foreign Affairs – Some of the best essays about what is going on in the world and why. Great insights you can apply to your macro view. Extremely cheap and has nice every other month little book sent to you which is pretty nice to have laying around. They could get 10x the $40 a year subscription price. It’s a steal.
I used to have subscriptions to Stratfor and Foreign Policy. Both are good sites, but eventually you run out of time to read. If there’s something I need, I could do a monthly service in the future, but for now, I think you can just use the free sides.
Charting & Investment Tools
TradingView has become my default charting tool when I am looking for technical information. They also have a great platform for idea generation and to check other people’s work. It really is a great platform and I’ve stopped using a couple others to use TradingView. I would like anybody who plans to trade a bit or wants to learn more about technical analysis to subscribe to TradingView. It will be our default charting platform going forward and it will be easier if we are all on the same platform. TradingView is running great specials, so jump on it now.
I use YCharts for doing economic studies and for charts to post in articles. It’s expensive and unless you plan to do some deep quantitative excel work, you don’t need it. Stick with TradingView.
I also subscribe to BarCharts Premier service. It has a great idea generator for options that I have not found anywhere else. It also has a great rating system for helping with when to buy or sell a stock. It does most of the charting as well. It’s really top notch for the $29/month price. I’m sharing my best ideas from BarChart, so unless you have more time to hunt, I’d say all you need is TradingView (hint).
Other Investment Research Resources
I literally subscribe to over 3 dozen more websites, investment letters and services. All have a use from time to time.
I have pared back my oil and gas subscriptions as we are into the “end of the oil age” now and I know the field well enough (get it, “well” enough) that I don’t need the regurgitation anymore.
I have quite a few technology directed services due to my “smart everything world” and alternative energy tilt. I’ve been diving into materials since I think scarcity returns in the 2020s due to lack of investment the past decade. I have been doing a deep dive into cryptocurrency and gold as well the past two years. There’s various screening platforms and quant ratings to try to find value against historical and fundamental data as well.
The Seeking Alpha Premium service and tools are interesting. The best feature to me is the author stock ratings for finding trends and when too many people are on one side of the boat. The crowd sourcing is useful. The screening and portfolio management tools are also very solid. I haven’t quite figured out the financial factor/quant ratings, but they do seem to get folks to focus on thinking factors. The transcripts and old articles are very useful for quickly building up a knowledge of a company. For $239 per year it’s a very good service.
The one last thing you might want is Zacks. You don’t need it for most of the investment letters, I have those, but the screening and monitoring tools with their basic membership called Zacks Premium is a real time saver.
The Zacks ranks are good in that we can discern which way the analyst crowd is starting to lean. They are a great contrary indicator when herding, but a great early indicator when a few top analysts switch directions. I have contacted them to see if there is a discount I can offer.